Problem Solver - August 2020
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Streamline Your Purchasing Process


Purchasing products and equipment to outfit and update your facility is challenging. Luckily, there's a simple way to start the process. Services are available that are designed to help purchasing agencies save time and money, by streamlining the procurement process.

Q: How can we simplify purchases for our facility?

A: Consider joining a purchasing cooperative to make your procurement process more efficient. Purchasing cooperatives leverage public-sector demand for products at a larger scale, enabling them to deliver competitive prices, while also reducing the total cost of acquisition. Opportunities are available for everything from technology and furnishings to play equipment, sports equipment and more.

When you become a member of a purchasing cooperative, you can achieve product savings as you will benefit from more efficient and cost-effective purchasing methodologies. The cooperative will work to find commonly needed commodities and services, and then advocates for fair terms and conditions, minimizing work on your end and reducing costs through scaling of procurement procedures. This enables you to make purchases quickly from suppliers who have already been vetted, without having to engage in a time-consuming bid process.

Q: What do we have to do to join a purchasing cooperative?

A: Free memberships are available to school districts, colleges, universities, cities, counties, special districts and nonprofits. Vendors pay a transaction fee when they get orders from members, covering the cost of operations. This fee has little impact on the prices you pay for products and services, due to economies of scale.

To get started, simply sign your organization up, then wait for the cooperative to vet your agency to be sure your application is legitimate. Once your application is accepted, you and others from your agency will be able to use the cooperative to make purchases for your facility.



FOR MORE INFORMATION

The Keystone Purchasing Network
888-490-3182
www.thekpn.org


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