What Procurement Agents Can do to Prepare for the Infrastructure Bill
Chances are if you’re a procurement agent you’ve already heard about the giant infrastructure bill that’s making its way through the federal government. You also know that this large of a bill only comes along once every 10-15 years, and that making sure your department can make the most of the funds you get will be of utmost importance. With $2 trillion potentially coming down the pipe, government agents will need to be optimizing e-bidding platforms to connect with the best vendors for each project.
What’s in the infrastructure bill?
The bill is still in the works, but we have an idea of what the infrastructure bill may include. According to The Washington Post, the infrastructure package is “expected to include $400 billion in spending to combat climate change, including $60 billion for infrastructure related to green transit and $46 billion for climate-related research and development. The plan aims to make electric-vehicle charging stations available across the country. The measure also would include $200 billion for housing infrastructure, including $100 billion to expand the supply of housing for low-income Americans.” This means that if you’re a procurement agent working for the highway authority, state and local infrastructure departments, water districts, and more, you’ll want to not only keep an eye for what types of funding may be coming, but also connect with vendors and service providers who can help you make the most of the funds you receive.
Connect with the best vendors through e-bidding
Government procurement agents will want to connect with as many vendors as possible to ensure that they are hiring vendors who provide them with the highest quality work at the most competitive pricing. Here are some features offered by e-bidding platforms like DemandStar that can help:
Online RFPs – You may need to create more than one RFP depending on the type of funding you receive. By having your RFPs online, you can pull the basics from a previous RFP and only update the specifics of the new project. Also, digital is easier for vendors as well, especially if they’ve signed up for notifications. This will ensure you reach a wider range of vendors to get the most options.
Connect with vendors outside your area – E-bidding is a fantastic way to connect with vendors across your state and even across America. Not every job requires the vendor to be local, so expanding your search area may help you find the right fit.
An algorithm to help – Vendors are also gearing up for these upcoming funds, so it makes sense that you might see even more bids coming through, and an algorithm can save procurement agents lots of time. Government agents can select a variety of criteria including certification requirements or budget parameters and allow the system to only deliver those bids that meet the set standards.
Prepare in advance
As your department waits to learn how much of the $2 trillion infrastructure bill they might receive, it’s important to prepare for what’s coming. By creating an online e-bidding profile for your department in advance, you can establish your agency in the online marketplace and be prepared to connect with vendors once the budgets are approved.
How will you use the online marketplace to connect with vendors once you have infrastructure dollars to spend?