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After months of hard work, what was called the Procurement Information Center (PIC) on the OSD website has been replaced with a simplified, searchable format called the Best Value Procurement Handbook.

Highlights

  • New content promotes using the seven steps of strategic sourcing and ties the concepts together;
  • Simplified language makes the policy easier to understand;
  • Rather than multiple separate documents, all of the documents that previously comprised the Procurement Information Center now reside in one place that is easily searchable, including appendices and links to external information;
  • Eliminates redundancies and clarifies policies;
  • Incorporates previously separate COMMBUYS policy information; and
  • Revised OSD forms and RFR terms.

 

Policy and Procedures

  • In addition to a user-friendly format, a number of policy updates were made for all eligible entities conducting procurements under Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ procurement regulation, 801 CMR 21.00, Procurement of Commodities and Services, including Human and Social Services. The policy updates include:
  • In extenuating circumstances, if a Department is considering accepting late vendor responses, a new policy requires that the Department Head request permission to do so from the Assistant Secretary for Operational Services via email at purchasing.agent@massmail.state.ma.us.
  • Pilot programs now require a full (RFR) procurement process.
  • Providing Estimated Bid Value in the RFR no longer is mandatory. Departments should decide when it makes sense to include this information in their RFRs.
  • Bid cancellations must be noted as Amendments and in the Notes section for at least 30 days to alert vendors of the cancellation.

 

What does this mean?

Moving forward, you should access the Best Value Procurement Handbook instead of the Procurement Information Center, which no longer will exist. If you have previously bookmarked the PIC, please update the link accordingly. We encourage you to take some time to familiarize yourself with the Handbook’s format and usability, as well as the policy changes.

If you have any questions or feedback about the Best Value Procurement Handbook, please email OSDhandbookpolicy@massmail.state.ma.us. We hope you find it to be a beneficial tool for sourcing and procurement!

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