The Procurement Project

Kenneth has 14 years of healthcare experience in government and private industry. Over eight years of experience managing healthcare IT projects, operations, contracts, and personnel. His work experience includes project management, contracts and procurements, data analysis, claims adjudication, business writing, and business process modeling. Kenneth was certified in 2006 as a Project Management Professional.

Many project managers view procurement as a process that needs to be completed before starting a project. In some companies or situations, it may actually be as simple as filling out a template, picking the lowest bidder and getting to work on the project. Many organizations, however, have rigorous requirements and red tape surrounding procurements. This is especially true in any type of government setting where procurements can be scrutinized by layers of bureaucracy and all documents and e-mails are subject to “open records” requests. (How would you like to have your correspondence detailing what you need from the grocery store read by a local news reporter?)

Procurement management is one of the knowledge areas in PMBOK, but procurements for large computer systems or multi-year projects can easily take on a life of their own. It is beneficial in these instances to treat the procurement as if it is a project by itself with the beginning and ending planned out in advance. Even PMBOK describes procurement management as if it were a project with a planning process at the beginning and a closing process at the end. This article will provide guidelines for issues that are unique to a procurement project. Ensuring that these guidelines are followed (or at least considered) by the appropriate stakeholder will assist the project manager in successfully completing …

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