TechNet seeks to promote and support transparency, competition, cost effectiveness, and professionalism as technology procurement processes are developed, adopted, implemented, and updated. As states consider procurement reforms and legislation, TechNet will advocate for the following principles:
- Measures that are technology-neutral and that promote robust competition by the most capable IT service and solution providers.
- Processes that are transparent, strategic, and start well before Request for Proposals (RFPs) are issued (including a framework for communication between the public and private sectors) to give government agencies a more informed understanding of current industry capabilities and practices. This will also allow the private sector to gain a deeper understanding of that agency’s unique challenges and will result in better RFPs, better contracts, and increased innovation.
- Strong, visionary leadership is needed to drive innovation. Efforts to create or strengthen the role of an executive-level officer with supervisory and operational authority over enterprise- wide IT policy, planning, and operations are encouraged.
- Statutory flexibility to allow agencies to consider all relevant factors in addition to cost. Agencies should adopt solutions that meet all business and technical requirements and provide the best service for a fair price. They should consider both short and long-term impact, the quality of goods and services purchased, performance history, total cost of ownership, and many other factors.
- Develop and advance policies that allow flexibility for states to adopt IT services and emerging technologies that best meet their needs.
- The complexities of IT service agreements are not well suited to uniform application of a standard set of terms and conditions. Agencies should have the flexibility to use contracting vehicles that can accommodate the unique set of IT terms and conditions that are aligned to commercial best practices and can incorporate future innovations.
- Efforts to better recruit, train, and retain procurement professionals with the skills needed to manage complex IT procurement acquisitions and oversee the implementation of the projects are critical.
- Procurement reform at the local, state, and federal levels that acknowledges the evolving technology landscape, and enables the sale and use of innovative and secure products to be sold to and used by governments without imposing additional, time-consuming approvals.