Procurement Consulting

The key to a successful procurement project is a thorough understanding of what the enterprise is trying to achieve, hence any such project must begin with a comprehensive analysis of the relevant business unit or project leading to the development of a statement of requirements. Once these have been agreed upon by the key stakeholders, they must be organised into such categories as system capabilities, maintenance, service management, scope of works, service levels, etc. and must be written in a style that both defines the requirements generically yet affords a potential vendor little latitude to claim compliance of a requirement that its product or service cannot fulfil. Occasionally, existing services and infrastructure require an audit.

Although there are exceptions, an enterprise usually achieves an optimum outcome via a competitive process by which potential suppliers will respond to the statement of these requirements whether via a formal request for tender, a less formal request for proposal or a still less formal approach. The primary advantages of tendering are that the preparation of the specifications force the enterprise to thoroughly identify and document its requirements at the beginning of the process and by placing these in a formal request for tender document, the enterprise is setting the agenda. This process forces potential vendors to provide precise responses to the enterprise's actual requirements instead of providing a forum for vendors to promote unrequired capabilities with well-rehearsed presentations.

Stephen Coates, the principal of Occidental Communications, has extensive experience analysing current environments and business requirements, and identifying those requirements which require services and/or infrastructure to be acquired. He has developed and continues to refine a well-refined request for tender (RFT) template which has been used in consulting engagements for many state and commonwealth government units and private enterprise clients. He has also developed an evaluation process using a combination of criteria weightings and price scoring based on the service or product's net present value (NPV). Stephen has applied the above to projects to procure:
l telephony infrastructure;
l telephony carriage;
l identity management software;
l call centre infrastructure;
l videoconferencing systems;
l facilities and infrastructure management.

Stephen has also project managed the implementation of several such systems and services.

Whether working on a procurement project, writing a piece for publication or compiling the vendors directories on this site, Stephen Coates meticulously maintains strict vendor independence. RFTs, for example, are written to reflect the requirements of the client in question and not to seek capabilities some vendors would like to promote. RFTs managed by Stephen Coates for different clients have been won by a number of different vendors.


Application Design
Projects have included the design of applications for CTI, IVR and IVR/speech recognition projects. For some projects, the application has been included in an RFT specification, ensuring the quoted price is that of a working system, not just licence fees.


Market Knowledge
Stephen maintains a broad awareness of a large number of vendors in each of several vendor and product categories relevant to call centres. The directories for Australia and New Zealand are listed in the ANZ Vendor Directories page.


Vendor Independence
Whether working on a consulting project, writing a piece for publication or compiling the vendors directories cited immediately above, Stephen Coates maintains strict vendor independence. RFTs, for example, are written to reflect the requirements of the client in question and not to seek capabilities some vendors would like to promote. RFTs managed by Stephen Coates for different clients have been won by a number of different vendors.


To further discuss how, contact our procurement consulting skills can benefit your organisation, contact Occidental Communications.



Home Call Centre Consulting Contact



Occidental Communications, 2010