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NIGP Consulting


Improve Buyer-Seller Relationships

Whether you are a procurement professional or a supplier for the public sector, it is necessary to have a strong relationship with your counterpart.  The NIGP Business Council, of which Periscope Holdings is a member, authored the Healthy Supplier Relationship Guide in support of NIGP and the public procurement profession by the sharing of resources and collaboration of expertise. The Healthy Supplier Relationship Guide provides best practice ideas and practices for both procurement practitioners and suppliers to improve and elevate the value and effectiveness of buyer-seller relationships. The Guide focuses on three key components of the procurement cycle; non-contract relations and activities, competitive solicitation activities, and contract holder interactions.  Such concepts as development of a communications plan, market survey development and completion, conduct of procurement fairs, and award de-briefings with unsuccessful offerors are just some of the tangible, practical ideas that can be put into action.

Take some time to read the Healthy Supplier Relationship to improve your procurement or selling practices in the public sector.

Healthy Supplier Relationship Guide

Periscope Acquires BidSync to Form Public Procurement Powerhouse

Austin, TX, December 10, 2014 – Periscope Holdings has acquired BidSync, an industry leader in developing cloud-based procurement and bid notification solutions for the public sector. Periscope’s addition of BidSync creates a true powerhouse in public and higher education procurement. The combined company will retain the name Periscope Holdings. The transaction closed on Monday, December 8, 2014.

BidSync is best known for its eSourcing solutions and for having the largest government bid notification system in North America, enabling suppliers and vendors to identify and respond to more bid opportunities, while Periscope has created a strong reputation in eProcurement, along with being the sole custodian of the NIGP Commodity/Services Code and the NIGP Consulting Program. Both companies are pioneers in the industry and have been instrumental in creating the solutions that have transformed public procurement over the last 15 years.

This acquisition was supported by Periscope’s private equity partner, Parthenon Capital Partners. Through Parthenon Capital Partners, the combined company will have access to strong institutional sponsorship and the growth capital necessary to drive further innovation to ensure it continues to offer the industry’s leading eProcurement and bid notification solutions. Parthenon’s investment recognizes Periscope’s strong history of thought leadership, consistent growth and profitability, and commitment to transforming public procurement. In addition, it will support the combined company’s future operational and product development plans and its drive to remain the leaders in purpose-based procurement.

“Our acquisition of BidSync is incredibly exciting and we are thrilled to bring these two public procurement industry leaders together,” said President and CEO of Periscope Holdings, Brian Utley, who will lead the merged company. “We look forward to continuing to deliver on the promise of purpose-based procurement, which has always been Periscope’s value proposition and reason for existence. I am particularly grateful for our partnership with Parthenon Capital Partners, which allowed us to form a new public procurement powerhouse.“

Periscope Holdings will continue to drive innovation for both the vendor and the agency-side of the business, with a long-term strategy to find efficiencies and new products in the combined company’s offerings. The company’s commitment to innovation and thought leadership will only grow, with a firm resolve to provide the market with the most advanced and comprehensive solutions that transform public and higher education procurement and enhance visibility for the vendor community.

“We are enthusiastic about joining the Periscope team,” said Fred Tillman, BidSync CIO and interim CEO, who becomes the combined company’s CIO. “The combination of these two eProcurement pioneers will have tremendous benefits to our customers and the eProcurement industry as a whole. Not only will this transaction bring together the two industry-leading eProcurement products for the public sector and higher education, but it also will enable BidSync and Periscope to drive further innovations that enable better purchase interactions between agencies and vendors.”

Brian Golson, Managing Partner at Parthenon Capital Partners, said, “We’re thrilled to partner with Brian Utley and the Periscope/BidSync executive team to aggressively grow the company. Periscope is poised to continue to build upon its leadership position in the government and education procurement industry.” Zach Sadek, Principal at the firm, remarked, “We are impressed with the Periscope team and their commitment to their mission of eradicating waste and providing value to every dollar spent. We’re looking forward to assisting the company as it continues to innovate and offer the industry’s leading procurement solutions.”

With the completion of the transaction, BidSync employees join the Periscope Holdings team led by Brian Utley. Periscope is headquartered in Austin, Texas, and BidSync will retain its location in American Fork, Utah.

Stephens Inc. served as exclusive financial advisor to Periscope Holdings on the transaction, and Piper Jaffray & Co. served as exclusive financial advisor to BidSync. Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as legal advisor to Parthenon Capital Partners in connection with the transaction.

Periscope Holdings, Inc. (http://www.periscopeholdings.com), headquartered in Austin, Texas, is the leader in purpose-based procurement. Periscope eradicates waste and maximizes the value of every dollar spent by our public sector and higher education clients with procurement transformation solutions and services.

Periscope offers an eProcurement software suite, BuySpeed™, holds the exclusive license to maintain, enhance, and market the NIGP Commodity/Services Code, and manages the NIGP Consulting Program, which provides a wide range of procurement transformation services, including procurement strategy development, organizational assessments, relevant benchmarking, process reviews, and strategic sourcing services. Our solutions streamline processes, increase efficiency, decrease expenditures, and create transparency, allowing our clients to focus on achieving their purpose.

BidSync (www.bidsync.com) offers cloud-based, end-to-end e-procurement solutions that help public sector agencies streamline their procurement process, maintain compliance, reduce costs, enable transparency and save time. The comprehensive solutions deliver cross-functionality through the entire procurement process from request to settle. BidSync also delivers bid notification services to 800,000 vendors nationwide. BidSync has 15 years of experience and its award-winning solutions have been relied on by more than 1,000 public sector agencies nationwide.

Parthenon Capital Partners (www.parthenoncapitalpartners.com) is a leading mid-market private equity firm based in Boston and San Francisco. Parthenon utilizes niche industry expertise and a deep execution team to invest in growth companies in service industries. Parthenon seeks to be an active and aligned partner to management, either through recapitalization transactions or by backing new executives. Parthenon has particular expertise in business services, financial and insurance services and healthcare, but seeks any service, technology or delivery business with a strong value proposition and proprietary know-how. Parthenon’s investment team has deep experience in corporate strategy, human capital, capital markets and operations, thereby enabling the firm to pursue complex, multi-faceted value creation opportunities.

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Digital Services Playbook Blog Series Introduction

Today’s blog was written by Ryan Moore, Periscope’s Director of Product Management. It is the first in a series of blog posts about the Digital Services Playbook created by the U.S. Digital Service, a team focused on improving and simplifying the digital experience that people and businesses have with their government.

In 2013 the Federal government launched one of the cornerstone initiatives under President Obama, HealthCare.gov. The ambitious website was plagued with early technical problems, and it quickly became evident that the old-school practices for expensive development projects were not compatible with building highly technical digital systems in the ever evolving information technology landscape. As a result of these early stumbles, the Administration sought out those in the private sector that had the skills and experience to both turnaround HealthCare.gov, and to proactively lead the public sector in the fast paced digital services environment.

This new group of talented innovators formed what is now the U.S. Digital Service, a team with one core mission, to improve and simplify the digital experience that people and businesses have with their government by:

  • Establishing standards to bring the government’s digital services in line with the best private sector services;
  • Identifying common technology patterns that will help us scale services effectively;
  • Collaborating with agencies to identify and address gaps in their capacity to design, develop, deploy and operate excellent citizen-facing services; and
  • Providing accountability to ensure agencies see results.

In an effort to achieve this mission, in August the Administration released the Digital Services Playbook, a guidebook for agencies and developers that lays out 13 best practices that will help deliver more value from the digital products and services we all heavily rely upon today.

13 Plays in the Digital Services Playbook

  • Understand what people need
  • Address the whole experience, from start to finish
  • Make it simple and intuitive
  • Build the service using agile and iterative practices
  • Structure budgets and contracts to support delivery
  • Assign one leader and hold that person accountable
  • Bring in experienced teams
  • Choose a modern technology stack
  • Deploy in a flexible hosting environment
  • Automate testing and deployments
  • Manage security and privacy through reusable processes
  • Use data to drive decisions
  • Default to open

As thought leaders at the intersection between technology and public procurement, Periscope has been an early adopter in the move towards more agile and lean development practices. We were excited to see this acknowledgement that agile development and the government sector not only can be compatible, but are actually the best practice for building digital services that bring the most value for every dollar spent.

Over the next few months, Periscope will be highlighting some of the key plays in the Digital Services Playbook that help drive our day-to-day decision making. We hope to use this opportunity to educate our clients and partners on how these plays can be used to build better eProcurement solutions. We also want to establish a dialogue with other procurement professionals and to hear your feedback on how these plays are working, so we can continue to improve the products and processes you use every day.

Please check back in two weeks for the next blog in this series which will explore how Periscope is using these plays as we work with our clients and partners to eradicate waste and maximize the value of every dollar spent.

Introducing NIGP Code News

We are excited to introduce NIGP Code News, our new quarterly email newsletter for NIGP Code users! We created NIGP Code News for YOU, our loyal Code users! This quarterly newsletter will include important information about the Code, a tip for getting the most from the Code, and a message from the President of NIGP Code & Consulting, Matt Walker.

Please let us know how we can make NIGP Code News valuable for you! Share your ideas in the comments section or email us. We are committed to meeting your needs and providing information that well help you to maximize your use of the NIGP Code.

Skills & Capabilities of Successful Procurement Professionals

Earlier this year Andrew Bartolini, Publisher of CPORising.com published a fantastic blog series highlighting the key skills and capabilities that a successful procurement professional should have. His list included:

1. Data Analysis
2. Financial Analysis
3. The Sourcing Process
4. Category Management
5. Supply Market Knowledge
6. Cash Management
7. Contract Management
8. Business Consulting Skills
9. Leveraging Technology to Drive Business Value
10. Supplier Performance Management
11. Supply Risk Management
12. Operational Procurement
13. Project Management
14. Presentation Skills

You can click here to read all of the blogs in this series. When you think about your future as a procurement professional, which skills and capabilities will you focus on developing?

Periscope works with procurement professionals every day, and we are in awe of your diverse skills and expertise. We applaud your hard work and leadership, and we stand with you.

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