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Enhancing Efficiency and Transparency in the Public Sector: How Periscope’s Valuable Solutions Deliver Proven Results

A recent report was published by a global consulting firm regarding how governments are making positive strides in better managing the various challenges met in the public sector and in enhancing transparency to gain public trust, despite heavy debt loads and budget constraints. The analysis indicates that governments are able to achieve these objectives and successfully do more with less by adopting such practices including increasing their use of accessible data, connecting with citizens for valuable input and feedback, advancing their knowledge base, and working with other sectors to improve procurement processes. This approach focuses on the four aforementioned concepts and encourages public sector leaders to think more logically and leave behind legacy processes that are no longer effective. Periscope Holdings applauds the report and is a firm believer in these practices, offering essential procurement solutions and services that are designed for the public sector and align perfectly with the highlighted recommendations.

Increasing Use of Data and Analytics

Data tracking and analysis capabilities facilitate informed decision making and lead to more accurate results in measuring the efficiency and effectiveness of operations. The report recommends gathering detailed performance statistics, applying benchmarking techniques, and using relevant data to promote government initiatives. Periscope’s e-procurement solution BuySpeed incorporates key procurement performance metrics and best practices from our clients to further develop our industry-leading suite of management dashboards and reports powered by BuySpeed’s Business Intelligence (BI) module. The State of Arizona implemented the BI framework to monitor performance and track spend and has since experienced a 26% reduction in costs toward various commodities and services. Further, the company works with state and local government entities to aid in master data cleanup for a more standardized format, rationalized inventory, and visibility of spend, and to deliver benchmarking analysis through its NIGP Consulting Program. The team is currently working with the State of Arkansas to conduct a material master data cleanse, which is expected to improve reporting capabilities, reduce inventory and carrying costs, increase vendor participation, and provide a highly structured, industry-standard classification system.

Connecting with Citizens for Input and Feedback

The movement toward citizen involvement is growing, and more governments are relying on the public for input on the design and development of services, in order to not only better meet their expectations but also to transfer some level of accountability. Additionally, they are improving productivity and further encouraging citizen participation by boosting transparency of data through technology. BuySpeed Sourcing and eProcurement software transforms the public procurement and competitive solicitation process by providing a one-stop-shop for viewing bids, solicitations, vendor responses, contracts, and more. BuySpeed’s vendor management functionality empowers private enterprises and ensures that primary suppliers of products and services to our state and local governments are sharing the administrative load associated with a fair and competitive procurement process. Further, this capability allows vendors to easily register for free, download bid notices and respond to bids online. The City of Baltimore more than tripled its vendor registrations, from 3,000 to nearly 10,000, after a successful launch of BuySpeed in 2007.

Advancing the Knowledge Base

This report points out that gathering well-trained employees who are driven by a purpose is absolutely essential in the strategic success of public sector programs. Procurement staff assessment, including the areas of knowledge, skills, experience, and workload management, is a primary component of many of the procurement reviews designed by Periscope’s NIGP Consulting services. Additionally through the efforts of the NIGP Consulting Program, we strive to advance the overall competency level of our public purchasing clients, assist them in achieving and maintaining necessary certifications, and assess staff skill sets relative to best practices in the industry. We work with our clients to leverage valuable educational resources that are available to them, such as those through the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP). Upon entering a project with the NIGP Consulting team, the County of Sarasota raised staff credentials with over 1,000 training hours logged within a 12-month period and members earning advanced certifications, such as CPPB, CPPO, CPM, and FCCM. Employing individuals who possess thorough backgrounds and advanced knowledge and skills is yet another way governments are able to gain greater productivity and do more with less.

Improving Procurement Processes

This overarching approach to government reform highlights the need for governments to improve the procurement of products and services and reduce costs. At Periscope Holdings, this is the foundation on which we have built our sole purpose. Our company focus is to eradicate waste and maximize value the value of every dollar spent, and we work every day to ensure that the tools and services we provide fulfill this mission for each and every one of our clients. The BuySpeed solution streamlines processes, decreases expenditures, and creates transparency to drive significant savings and ensures close collaboration with suppliers and vendors throughout the entire procure-to-pay process. Periscope is currently developing new offerings that will allow even greater visibility to and analysis of products and services that governments are purchasing collectively – qualities that will further assist public entities in making meaningful benchmark comparisons while also empowering a market-focused supplier community to be responsive to government needs.

The public sector has the opportunity to benefit from increasing their use of data, connecting with citizens for input and feedback, advancing their knowledge base, and improving procurement processes by first being willing to make a change. Governments should step up and implement creative solutions that will generate savings and raise efficiencies. Procurement transformation encompassing these four practices is a valuable investment and a crucial step to creating a more effective and manageable organization. Periscope takes pride in offering unique, purpose-built functionality and useful services that are proven to bring about procurement success.


What You Need to Know about Evolve ‘14

The time has come for Periscope’s 3rd annual Evolve conference in Austin, and it’s getting bigger and better every year! Join us April 21-23, 2014 as we bring together public sector procurement professionals nationwide to discuss the latest trends and obstacles in the industry and the future of procurement in 2014 and beyond!

KEY THEME. Productive networking and education on innovative ways to eradicate waste, maximize value, and drive savings in the public sector through procurement automation.

GREAT EVENT, GREAT LOCATION. The Evolve conference has grown significantly over the years, with a doubling attendance rate and an impressive agenda full of valuable takeaways. Evolve ‘14 will be hosted at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines just outside of Austin. The hotel boasts comfortable guest rooms, vast meeting spaces, dining, and activities all in one convenient location.

HIGH-CALIBER KEYNOTE SPEAKERS. Former Governor of Pennsylvania Edward Rendell will join us to deliver a compelling keynote presentation on how he promoted strategic cost cutting and drove procurement savings, among many other achievements, throughout his eight-year leadership. Past speakers have include top names, like Roy Spence, chairman, CEO, and co-founder of Austin advertising agency GSD&M, and Gilbert Tuhabonye, Olympic runner, author, and motivational speaker.

THOUGHT-PROVOKING SESSIONS. Backed by a purpose-driven approach, Periscope is determined to provide education on relevant solutions and strategies necessary for achieving procurement success. The Evolve ‘14 agenda will also include exciting news on product launches and updates and provide the opportunity for attendees to engage in dialogue with respected procurement leaders via panel discussions and learn real-life examples of procurement transformation.

BEST PRACTICE TRAINING. There will be plenty of opportunities to participate in in-depth breakout training sessions to gain further understanding of the ins and outs of powerful procurement tools, like the NIGP Code and Periscope’s top-rated software BuySpeed, via interactive live applications and product demos, and learn more ways to get the most out of these solutions. The Evolve conference additionally offers certification exam preparation and continuing education credits.

HUGE PUBLIC SECTOR FOLLOWING. Evolve attendees typically include chief procurement officers, certified purchasers and procurement directors, and IT and finance professionals from state and local government agencies, school systems, special districts, and higher education entities.

AFFORDABLE COMMITMENT. Early Bird Registration is currently available for $385. The Hyatt Regency Lost Pines is offering a discounted rate of $108 per night. We’ll provide meals, beverages, and activities.

*To take advantage of Early Bird pricing for a limited time, register now at evolve.periscopeholdings.com/registration.


Evolve ‘14 Keynote Speaker Announced

Periscope Holdings is proud to announce the Evolve 2014 Keynote Speaker! Former Governor of Pennsylvania Edward G. Rendell will deliver the keynote presentation to kick off Periscope’s annual thought leadership procurement conference on Tuesday, April 22, 2014. Register now and join us in learning how he drove efficiency and increased procurement savings for the state, among many other compelling achievements throughout his eight-year leadership.

After 34 years of public service, including 24 years as an elected official, Governor Rendell continues to pursue many of the same issues he was passionate about while serving. His commitment to making America a cleaner, more efficient place and to fostering investment in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure is as strong as it has ever been. Rendell has become a champion for progress in the area of alternative energy, and now serves as a consultant or board member for several green and alternative energy firms, including Own Energy, Element Partners and VNG.co. He has also remained heavily involved in the campaign for government efficiency and strategic cost cutting through his work with entities such as Government Sourcing Solutions and Public Financial Management.

Perhaps no other issue has been and continues to be as important to Governor Rendell as America’s dire need to rebuild and reinvest in its infrastructure. As Governor, Rendell worked with Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to create an organization called “Building America’s Future.” The organization focuses on the need for a more significant investment in American infrastructure projects to ensure that America maintains its place as a global economic power. Governor Rendell currently serves as Co-Chair of the organization and travels throughout the country speaking about this issue.

Governor Rendell also recently penned his first book, A Nation of Wusses: How America’s Leaders Lost the Guts to Make Us Great. In A Nation of Wusses, Rendell chronicles his storied political career with his trademark candor while making a strong statement about the state of American leadership.

Rendell served two terms as Governor of Pennsylvania (2003-2011) and oversaw a budget of $28.3 billion as the chief executive of the nation’s 6th-most-populous state. As Governor, Rendell was committed to making government more responsible and responsive to the public’s needs, and he successfully cut wasteful spending and improved efficiency leading to savings of over $1 billion. His legislative agenda focused on commonsense political reform and putting progress ahead of partisanship. Through his unprecedented strategic investments, he energized Pennsylvania’s economy, revitalized communities, improved education, protected the environment, expanded access to health care to all children, and made affordable prescription drugs available to older Pennsylvanians.

During his two terms as Mayor of Philadelphia (1992-2000), Rendell eliminated a crippling deficit, balanced the City’s budget, and generated five consecutive budget surpluses. Philadelphia’s renaissance, which The New York Times called “the most stunning turnaround in recent urban history,” is largely attributed to his determination, inspiration, and energy.

Before serving as Mayor, Rendell was elected District Attorney of Philadelphia for two terms from 1978 through 1985. Rendell also served as Chairman of the Democratic National Committee during the 2000 Presidential election. He currently sits on several boards, is a Brookings Fellow and teaches government and politics courses at the University of Pennsylvania.

An Army veteran, he holds a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from Villanova Law School.

Don’t miss out on this dynamic presentation! Early Bird Registration for Evolve ‘14 is still currentlyavailable. For more information about the conference, please visit evolve.periscopeholdings.com.


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