The Waiting Game

Using analytics to streamline the process of visualizing federal procurement.

As I write this blog, it’s the morning of November 9th. Along with much of the world, I was up until the wee hours of the morning last night, anxiously watching and waiting for precincts to close and results to roll in. And now today, with the announcement of our 45th president, we begin to turn our attention towards the transition. Who will fill the Trump Cabinet? How will agencies be impacted?

It’s a waiting game—one that those of us in and around government are all too familiar with. Whether you’re waiting for budget approval, the requirements for the latest congressional mandate, or the appointment of your agency’s new Administrator, it seems we’re always waiting on something.

Recently, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) proposed a new circular to “Implement Category Management for Common Goods and Services”. The goal of Category Management is to further the Federal Government’s strategic sourcing efforts in three key ways: reduce contract duplication, improve buying power and increase sharing. OMB notes that by changing the way government procures the roughly $270B spent annually on “common goods and services”, agencies can realize the above goals while also freeing up contracting officers to focus on mission-critical acquisitions.

Federal procurement can be complex, but #analytics provides a roadmap to simplicity:

All of that sounds great, so when can you start realizing these benefits? Well, you just need to wait for the circular to be approved, execution plans agreed upon, new political appointees to assume their roles and weigh in. OK, so you might have to wait a while....or do you?

Qlik and partner Grant Thornton have teamed up to create a category management solution that provides you with the valuable insight, the ultimate goal of Category Management. Take a look at the screenshot below, where I selected a simple search term, “Oracle”, and instantly see all purchases of Oracle products government-wide. In a matter of seconds, Qlik searched through 8.9 million contract descriptions and filtered the dashboard on all contracts that used Oracle in their description. From there I can see individual agency spend, which suppliers were used, which category the spend fell under, etc.

The Federal procurement process is tough enough. With this type of insight, you can make it a little bit easier.

Photo credit: -Tripp- via / CC BY


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