5 Best Practices in IT Procurement to Get The Most Bang For Every Buck

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If you don’t already know, the IT procurement process is simply the steps a business goes through to obtain the right hardware and software to run their operations. The problem is technology is expensive. That’s why you need to leverage the right IT procurement best practices if you want optimal cost savings.

“You don’t have to cut your IT usage to reduce your IT budget. All you need to do is be strategic about your solutions.”Dustin Frost, Founder & President  Attentus Technologies

Those best practices aren’t always crystal clear. Circumstances can change at various points in the procurement cycle and supplier relationships tend to fluctuate. Still, the bottom line is that you need a set of reliable standards that can stand the test of these fluctuations.

Our expert IT procurement team put together this list of 5 IT procurement process best practices that should help you out. Our focus is always on helping you achieve the best ROI for your technology investments, and these 5 best practices are meant to do just that.


Top 5 IT Procurement Best Practices

1. Conduct Comprehensive Market Research

To get the best deals, you need to know the market well. This means knowing who sells what, how they price it, and what’s currently trending. Having this knowledge allows you to negotiate better deals and avoid costly mistakes. When you understand the market, you can spot when a price is too high or when a product doesn’t truly meet your needs.

Here are a few tips on how to conduct market research:

  • Use Data Analysis: Study how well suppliers are doing and what’s happening in the market so you can make decisions based on data-driven insights.
  • Talk to Sellers Early: Speaking with suppliers before you need to buy can give you useful information about what’s going on in the market.
  • Consult Team Members: Consult team members who are experienced in procurement management to make smarter decisions.
  • Monitor Industry News: Stay updated on industry trends to anticipate market shifts.

2. Define Clear Objectives and Requirements

Knowing exactly what you’re looking for is crucial. A well-defined scope of your technology needs not only guides you through the buying process but also helps you avoid costly errors. There are a lot of solutions out there, so you need to zero-in on exactly what you want before you consider making an investment.

What Else Should You Know to Up Your IT Procurement Strategy?

Start by writing down all the features and services you need. This helps you set a budget and keeps everyone involved in procurement on the same page throughout the search process. It also gives you clear documentation of what you need, which makes it easier to compare different suppliers.

3. Evaluate Vendors Thoroughly

Doing your homework on potential suppliers is a must in IT procurement. Proper vendor analysis helps you assess if a vendor fits your needs and meets industry standards. This careful evaluation protects you from risks like poor service, delays, and legal issues.

If you’re not sure where to start, consider the following criteria.

Criteria Description Importance Level
Quality of Service Measure the reliability and performance of their services. High
ROI Assess your return on investment compared to how much operations would cost without the vendor. High
Delivery Time Check the vendor’s ability to meet deadlines. Medium
Customer Service Assess the quality of the support team by reading reviews. Medium
Reputation Consider reviews and the vendor’s industry standing. High
Payment Terms Look at payment conditions to see if they align with how you’re willing to pay. Medium
Compliance Check for your vendor’s adherence to your industry’s regulations. High
Technical Capabilities Evaluate their tech knowledge and skills. Medium
Scalability Measure the vendor’s ability to handle your business growth. Medium
Past Performance Review their past projects and client feedback. High

4. Negotiate Smartly

To excel in IT procurement, understanding the nuances of negotiation is crucial. This expertise allows you to navigate complex discussions, secure favorable terms, and build lasting relationships with suppliers. However, it’s equally important to be aware of common pitfalls that can undermine the negotiation process.


Tips for Effective Negotiation

  1. Know Your Style: Understanding your negotiation style and that of your supplier can set the tone for the negotiation. Styles range from competitive to collaborative, and each has its pros and cons.
  2. Prepare Well: Preparation is crucial. Research the other party to anticipate what might come up in your negotiation. This will help you set your expectations and strategy. 
  3. Set Clear Goals: Clearly state your goals and expectations. This helps align the objectives of both parties.
  4. Be Adaptable: If the goals aren’t the same, you may need to adjust your approach. Be ready to shift strategies based on the other party’s actions.


Common Pitfalls to Avoid

  1. The Self-Centered Approach: Thinking only about what’s best for you and not considering the other party can lead to unsuccessful negotiations.
  2. Lack of Planning: Failing to plan your procurement negotiation can result in poorly set expectations and a poorly executed contract.
  3. Ignoring Relationship Building: Focusing solely on the outcome and ignoring the relationship can harm long-term partnerships and limit future opportunities.


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5. Monitor and Review Contracts

Effective contract management is a continuous process that can make or break the value you derive from your agreements. Monitoring and reviewing contracts are essential steps in ensuring that both parties meet their obligations and that the terms remain favorable.

Regularly reviewing contract terms helps you stay ahead of any potential issues. This proactive approach allows you to spot red flags early and take corrective action before minor issues escalate into major problems. It also gives you space to renegotiate as things change.


Count on IT Procurement Professionals to Land You The Best Deal

Overpaying for software, hardware, or services can drain your budget fast. Knowing the right procurement tactics will prevent this frustrating situation. However, you’re a busy business owner. You might not have time to do this all yourself.

You can count on Attentus Technologies to take that task off your plate. You can also be sure that we’ll always focus on finding what’s best for you, not what’s best for us. Our expert team will take the time to get to know your needs so we can cut you the best IT deal that will enhance your ROI.

Reach out to our experts to get started.