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The February 17th article featured in Governing Magazine, Purchase Power: A Special Report on State Procurement, outlines the results of a nationwide survey focused on state procurement practices and takes the stance that effective procurement methodologies are fundamental to state governments achieving spending efficiencies. Massachusetts’ approach to state procurement of goods and services, managed by the Operational Services Division, tied for fifth place overall and earned high marks in several focus areas.

The study reviews central procurement office activities from 37 states who responded to the comprehensive survey, looking at their approach to topics such as technology, contract management, and buyer engagement. In addition to its overall fifth-place finish, Massachusetts received a second-place standing for Information Technology Procurement along with a third-place ranking for both Sourcing and Use of Technology.

“We are pleased with these findings and how the focuses of the study align with many of our own priorities,” states Gary Lambert, Assistant Secretary for Operational Services. “The study is another tool to assess our performance and plan our path as we continue to move forward.”

In fact, over the last several years, OSD has shifted and refined its business in a number of areas to be in line with industry trends and responsive to customer needs. Here are a few highlights:

  • In 2014, OSD launched COMMBUYS, the Commonwealth’s Market Center, enabling online bid posting and purchasing, as well as valuable data collection. Today, COMMBUYS boasts 6,484 bids, 14,362 registered vendors, and $371MM in sales.
  • Introduced a municipal outreach group, the COMMBUYS Enablement Team, to help local government purchasers leverage Statewide Contracts and COMMBUYS and to maintain an open dialogue with municipal buyers;
  • Enhanced contract sales reporting capabilities to support data-driven decisions and negotiation;
  • Encouraged public buyer participation in state procurement activities. In FY2016, OSD recruited 113 new Strategic Sourcing Team members;
  • Expanded OSD’s training curriculum to include a five-day interactive course for Agency procurement officials that reviews the fundamentals of Strategic Sourcing. Since its introduction in 2013, more than 400 procurement professionals have attended, advancing procurement know-how throughout the Commonwealth;
  • Continue to work in concert with the Governor’s Office to engage small and diverse businesses in the procurement process by expanding and streamlining the state’s certification process and planning and promoting business networking events targeted to their groups.

Read the complete Governing Magazine article.
View the Survey Highlights.

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