The Public Sector Category

How Client Relationship Management (CRM) is Different for Government Contracting


Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Public Spend Forum, a sister site.

If you are used to private-sector sales, there are many differences to acquaint yourself with when transitioning to selling to government agencies, and the learning curve can be time consuming. Some of the successful sales and marketing tactics used in the commercial market do not work as well in government contracting. In fact, even the term “sales” is replaced with “capture management.” If you plan to transition and succeed in government contracting, it’s important that your client relationship management system (CRM) is set up to accommodate these differences to capture the business processes and data elements needed for government capture management.

Raj Sharma, on Public Spend: ‘The government market is one of the most closed in the world’

A sense of frustration — and optimism — comes through in Raj Sharma’s interview about the state of public procurement, or government contracting.

“Government markets are supposed to be open — the fact is, the government market is one of the most closed in the world, with significant barriers to entry,” says Sharma, co-founder of Public Spend Forum, a sister site of Spend Matters. “Many suppliers find it too difficult to penetrate, and end up walking away from the complexity, costliness and unyielding regulations.”

In an interview with Nancy Clinton of Spend Matters UK/Europe, Sharma details how he has dedicated much of his professional life to finding ways to improve government contracting and ways people can better interact with government.

10 Trends in Government Contracting: Analyzing the Parties, the Issues and the Shutdown

The changing power in the U.S. House alters the way Washington will work — and how procurement professionals will approach contracting with the government, Public Spend Forum says, offering 10 trends in government contracting (govcon) that should be on the profession’s radar.

Govtech in 2019: These 8 Public Sector Start-ups Already Making a Difference

Public Spend Forum (PSF), one of our sister sites, has taken a look at civic tech companies whose solutions “hold great promise for improving the way we live, work and engage within the public sector.” These emerging government technology contractors are featured in this PSF outlook for the year ahead, and the solutions focus on everything from monitoring stormwater to building better municipal websites to giving first responders on-demand, real-time information on how to respond to people with mental illnesses and other conditions. Check out the list of 8.

Public Spend and Riding a Bike: A Fresh Look at Successful Buyer-Supplier Relationships

In Spend Matters’ effort to examine public spend, we came across an article on Public Spend Forum that highlights a universal truth — while also leading into a lesson on rethinking how to source a project. The truth is that having the knowledge about something doesn’t mean that you can understand it enough to use it effectively. Kate Vitasek, a professor at the Haslem College of Business Administration at the University of Tennessee and founder of the Vested business model, learned a similar lesson when studying why some buyer-supplier relationships were more successful than others. Along the way she studied these transactions — even looking at U.S. Air Force procurement deals — and developed the Vested business model, which has five steps. Check out the details in this story and hear her on a podcast.

The Ultimate Guide to Subcontracting in Government Procurement

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Public Spend Forum, which is helping us look at the world of public sector procurement.

Entering the world of government contracting requires considerable effort and education on the complicated process. Once you’ve overcome all of the hurdles and secured your first government contract, you may find you’ll require additional assistance to fulfill the job. Before you begin your search for the appropriate subcontractors, you’ll want to review the applicable regulations and compliance requirements. And you'll want to read the tips in this guide.

Focusing on the Other Rich Vein of Procurement — Public Spend

Spend Matters plans to broaden its views on procurement in the new year with occasional forays into public spend issues — but let’s unwrap a present early to see what’s what.

There are numerous challenges that public sector procurement organizations face now and in the coming year. Mazes of emerging regulatory structures, high barriers to entry for suppliers and digital disruption, to name a few, all weigh on practitioners looking to better serve their governments and constituents.

To help navigate these and other issues, we’re diving into the Public Spend Forum archives to bring you some of the best public procurement-related news and research around. Our colleagues at PSF suggest we start by examining a story on the techniques for conducting efficient, effective government market research.

Sponsored Article

What Procurement Must Do to Keep Pace with Government’s Promises to Taxpayers

When President Trump first took office, it was clear that the new administration expected government agencies to start buying IT more like “a business.” Nearly two years later, that directive has not changed. In fact, the White House wants a technology business management (TBM) framework to be embraced government-wide by 2022, a feat that is not feasible unless agencies first embrace a more modern procurement framework. If the White House wants to change how agencies buy IT, infrastructure or any other system or service, it first needs to encourage broader investment in the technology required to more efficiently execute, track and evaluate every purchase.

Sole Sourcing and Lack of Weapon Design Experience to Blame for Pentagon’s Munitions Procurement Woes

The U.S. government is facing considerable challenges with its munitions procurement, as reported by Defense News in an article memorably headlined “The U.S. is Running Out of Bombs — And It May Struggle to Make More.” According to the latest annual Industrial Capabilities report from the Pentagon's Office of Manufacturing and Industrial Base Policy, sole sourcing and a lack of weapon design experience are crippling the U.S. industrial base.

Bonfire: Vendor Snapshot (Part 3) — Summary and Competitive Analysis [PRO]

procurement software

Bonfire is one of our most anticipated new participants in Spend Matters Q2 2018 Sourcing SolutionMap. Based on what we have covered in this deep dive analysis of Bonfire thus far, we suspect that the provider will personify many of the requirements of the Nimble persona, providing a compelling functional alternative to top-ranked Value Leaders including Scout RFP, Coupa, EC Sourcing, Keelver and Market Dojo (not to mention Nimble Solution Leaders including Ivalua, Zycus, Scanmarket and SynerTrade, as well as Nimble Customer leader SAP Ariba).

This third and final installment of this Spend Matters Vendor Snapshot covering Bonfire provides an objective SWOT analysis of the provider and offers a competitive segmentation analysis and comparison. It also includes recommended shortlist candidates as alternative vendors to Bonfire and offers provider selection guidance. Finally, it provides a summary analysis and recommendations for companies considering the vendor. Part 1 provided an in-depth look at Bonfire as a technology provider and its specific solutions. Part 2 gave a detailed analysis of solution strengths and weaknesses and a review of the product’s user experience.

Bonfire: Vendor Snapshot (Part 2) — Product Strengths and Weaknesses [PRO]

The market for best-of-breed sourcing solutions continues to take off. Bonfire, which was founded two years before Scout RFP, is the newest provider in the sector to build significant momentum in North America, leveraging a similar playbook as its better-known competitor, emphasizing ease-of-use, adoption and the user experience. With more than 230 customers in the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean, including market penetration in the public sector that rivals larger providers, Bonfire is becoming a more frequent shortlist candidate in an increasing number of sourcing buying scenarios in which suite capability is not a prerequisite.

This Spend Matters PRO Vendor Snapshot explores Bonfire’s product strengths and weaknesses, providing facts and expert analysis to help procurement organizations decide whether they should shortlist the vendor. It also offers a critique of the user interface. Part 1 of our analysis provided a company background and detailed solution overview, as well as a summary recommended fit suggestion for when organizations should consider Bonfire in the sourcing technology area. The final installment in this series will offer a SWOT analysis, user selection guide, competitive alternatives, and additional evaluation and selection considerations.

Afternoon Coffee: OMNIA Partners Purchases U.S. Communities GPO, Argentine Ports Stalled by Sticker Shortage

OMNIA Partners, a group purchasing organization (GPO) composed of National IPA, Prime Advantage and Corporate United, announced Monday it had entered an agreement to buy Communities Program Management LLC, the organization that staffs and manages the operations of the U.S. Communities Government Purchasing Alliance. Dangerous weather and labor strikes are not the only issues that can hold up shipments at ports. Sometimes a supply disruption can be caused by something as a simple as a shortage of green stickers. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.