By Tim Nau and Linda Leiby
Now more than ever, we are all learning to live with uncertainty. But one thing we know for sure is that public sector agencies cannot simply shut down. Millions of people depend on the essential services of state and local government agencies.
While public sector agencies adjust to remote work, increased paperwork, and unprecedented numbers of citizens facing unemployment, they also must move forward on critical IT projects that have been in the pipeline or that directly address the recent surge in demand for services. Keeping up with growing needs is already a challenge, but with a procurement staff stretched extra thin, agencies need a path that will guarantee positive outcomes with as little resistance as possible.
Sourcewell cooperative purchasing contracts give public sector entities the ability to move forward with critical IT projects without a long RFP process. By developing RFPs that meet member procurement requirements, Sourcewell allows local agencies to source exceptional products and services from national suppliers.
Sourcewell is a national municipal contracting agency established under Minnesota law with the authority to develop and offer cooperative procurement services to its members. Eligible membership and participation include states, cities, counties, both public and non-public educational agencies, colleges, universities, and non-profit organizations.
Because Sourcewell has more than 50,000 members, it can wield more buying power than a single organization and help public sector entities realize economies of scale they otherwise would not. Sourcewell procures more than $3 billion in goods and services for its member organizations each year.
When we heard about the cooperative purchasing contract CAI uses from Sourcewell, we immediately knew it offered what we needed to get the project off the ground in our tight timeframe.California City Project Manager
While the RFP process serves public sector agencies in important ways, there are times when smaller entities or local districts need to find specialized IT talent to staff critical projects quickly.
Here is an example of one of those times. By working with CAI to find contingent labor, a California city not only saved the six months a traditional RFP would have taken, but it also was able to leverage the right resources and tap the large talent pool that, until now, only large states have been able to access.
CAI is part of Sourcewell’s supplier network and provides public sector entities a one-stop shop for contingent workforce, service desk, ServiceNow®, application maintenance and development, and cybersecurity services. We have delivered more than 24,000 engagements with a total spend in excess of $2.2 billion across 594 state and local agencies - maintaining our contractual service level agreements (SLAs) while managing a network of more than 1,800 suppliers.