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Help Desk Hints offers solutions to your COMMBUYS conundrums. In this first segment, the Help Desk staff offers a few pointers for buyers creating bid line items, and for vendors creating quotes and editing line items.  We hope this information will enable vendors to submit complete responses for buyer consideration and will reduce buyers’ need to request quote revisions.

For buyers creating bid line items, DO include a description of the goods/services up for bid.  DO include instructions on how to respond to each line item by either selecting No Charge or entering the Unit Cost. The No Charge option is suitable for pre-qualification type bids; grant applications; bids that include detailed price files that will be returned as attachments; and/or multi-phase projects that will carry deliverable-based payments or charges. The Unit Cost option is suitable for goods/services which can be easily quoted to a per unit level. DO NOT leave a prospective respondent guessing how to complete the line item section of their quote; instead, provide detailed and accurate instructions about how you would like the vendor to respond. For vendors creating quotes and editing line items, DO select the Items tab, read, and complete based on the instructions as offered within the Bid Specification Document(s) or on the Line Item screen. It is imperative that you follow the Buyer’s submission instructions precisely and completely. You must either check off No Charge or enter the Unit Cost for each line item that you will be bidding on.  DO NOT submit a quote with the No Bid checkbox selected. The indication of No Bid could result in the quote being deemed unresponsive or incomplete.

For further guidance, check out the Create a Quote in COMMBUYS job aid, as well as the COMMBUYS Resource Center, which offers a wealth of information.   If you have additional COMMBUYS questions, the Help Desk is available from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday. For assistance, call 1-888-627-8283 or email COMMBUYS@state.ma.us.

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