4 Ways Procurement Software Brings Efficiency to the Government Contracting Process

Posted by Annette Grotz on January 10, 2019

4 Ways Procurement Software Provides Efficiency

Let’s face it, the procurement process can be unpredictable. Just when it seems everything is in place, a supplier misses a deadline. There are many moving parts, and some cannot be controlled.

Procurement software can bring efficiency to the entire procurement process, primarily through automation and by bringing all procurement data into one system; allowing specialists to easily view and manage communications, information, vendors, and for manufacturers, parts.

Consolidation of information and the ability to manage processes is a good step in the right direction for procurement teams delivering on government contracts.  However, without support for contract flow-downs, subcontractor management, and project-level procurement processes, inefficiencies start to creep back in, usually in the form of workarounds, paper processes and busy work.


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1. Procurement Tied to the Financials

Having procurement capabilities seamlessly linked to your enterprise resource planning (ERP) or accounting system, means you will benefit from the automation of many processes, shared vendor data, and increased accuracy. You will also have a highly visible approval workflow and be able maintain purchase order integrity for the entire procurement process.

2. Built-in Support for Contract Requirements

Adherence to contract requirements is key to being successful in government contracting. The requirements span from bid to bill, and the methods of meeting these requirements must be documented and preserved. Keeping the contract requirements intact through their automated flow helps ensure that teams from business development, operations and even shipping are aware of what is needed.

The contract your company won will have unique stipulations. Examples of common government contracting requirements:

A procurement system made for government contractors will automatically flow down contract specific requirements and load DPAS ratings to working documents based on a project task. This can also be completed and tracked with manual processes.

3. Subcontractor Management

Changes to the National Defense Authorization Act include subcontracting goals. You need to manage subcontractors for both internal and external purposes. You need alignment from the start and to have accountability for the duration of the project.

As a prime contractor, having subcontractor management support within your procurement system, may allow you to do such things as embed the statement of work (SOW) right into the requisitions and purchase orders, to keep communications clear, accountability visible, and processes efficient.

Built-in subcontractor management also helps record and maintain the history of modifications and historical data, which in turn helps accelerate the close out of a subcontract.

A procurement system with built-in subcontractor management also helps you control charges by following the workflow rules you establish, as well as govern who can charge what and when. It is much more efficient when subcontractors enter their own time and expenses and simply require review and approval.


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4. Project-Level Procurement

Procurement software helps government contracting firms automate the process of purchasing material and services. There are typically many other functions involved, such as inventory, contract management and vendor management.

Project-level procurement software takes functionality multiple steps further by aligning the processes and charges to projects, which allows users to analyze the data on project, account and organization levels.

Procurement planning at the project level helps procurement managers ensure they are buying according to the project’s contract requirements. An integrated, project-based system provides the visibility needed to set up each project’s approval workflow in a way that maintains the contract requirements (contract type, costing methods, subcontractor information, resource specifications), and loops in other teams to establish accountability and control from the start, before the purchase order is even created.

Automated procurement systems with materials resource planning (MRP) capabilities provides manufacturers with the additional functionality they need to plan and procure parts.

Project-based procurement software will have the project charge on every line for project data integrity, resulting in accurate project status reporting. Tying into accounting and invoicing at the project level will deliver detailed cost information at every stage of the work breakdown structure (WBS). Additionally, the automated flow of information between teams ensures that everyone is on the same page and working from the same data.

Experience the Difference

Government contractors can make a lot of efficiency gains with the right procurement software. View a demonstration of a purchasing system designed for their unique needs with the on demand solution speed session covering Deltek Costpoint Procurement.