Newsletter - August 2017 Print

Welcome New Members

Welcome New MembersCity of Fort Atkinson

The VALUE Planning Committee would like to welcome the City of Fort Atkinson to the VALUE in Local Government organization!

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The 7 Habits of Highly Ordinary Negotiators

The 7 Habits of Highly Ordinary Negotiators
Part 3 of 7

by Omid Ghamami

If you believe the glossy negotiation seminar advertisements in airline magazines, then world class negotiators are the ones who know how to “get an unfair advantage” and “get the upper hand” in negotiations.

Flush that philosophy down the toilet if you ask me.  What kind of supply chain has all the links trying to extort the upper hand over one another? Ask the Japanese if their supply chains, the most advanced in the world, have this kind of self-serving 1950’s focus.   Or you can save time and just ask me:  they don’t.

So what is one of the biggest “X Factors” that separates the good from world class PSCM (PSCM = Purchasing and Supply Chain Management) professionals?  You will not hear this from anyone else, anywhere.  Ready?

But first I want to tell you a story.  I once hired a landscaper to do my front and back yard.  We agreed as follows:  he would come every Sunday at 9AM and mow the lawn in my front and backyard, edge both lawns, trim the bushes, cleanup, and go.  Sounds clear enough, right?

Well, how could it be that he was doing EXACTLY what he and I agreed on week after week, yet I was still unhappy and had to ultimately release him?  What I learned was that I did not actually want to buy those activities that he and I agreed on.  I had forgotten my own teachings.

What I actually wanted to buy was an END RESULT, not the process.  But I focused on the process instead of the results when I defined the purchase, just like your end users do to you.

What I actually wanted was that every time I went outside or came home, my landscape would look pretty.  That’s what I wanted, but guess what, it’s not what I asked for.  And it was my fault!

The worst possible situation in PSCM in my opinion is that the supplier is doing EXACTLY what you asked them to do, yet you are still unsatisfied.  There’s nothing you can but look in the mirror and get angry.  I call this situation “purchasing hell”, and many of you live in it regularly.

So this leads me to the third habit of highly ORDINARY negotiators:

The most ORDINARY negotiators negotiate for Goods & Services Instead Of Performance Results.

That’s the third habit of highly ORDINARY negotiators – they buy goods and services. They buy “stuff” that their end users ask for, with no negotiated contractual guarantee of deeply researched performance outcomes.

What’s the implication of this, you might ask?

In three decades of working with PSCM professionals in 21 countries, I’ve come to an unmistakable conclusion.  Our profession is focusing on all the wrong things, aginst their will.

What percentage of each day do you think is, on average, spent on unplanned activities?  You won’t believe the answer.   It’s about 70 – 90%.  And it hasn’t gotten better in all this time.

Just stew on that for a minute.  We have a profession filled with unbelievable talent, capable of mastering complex strategies to negotiate multi-million dollar contracts and streamline supply chains, and we are instead getting our entire days agenda getting instead sucked up in unplanned activities.

So first let’s define an “unplanned activity”.  An unplanned activity is something you get sucked into against your will – against your master plan for the day.  Unplanned activities are time vampires. They suck the life out of you.  They don’t garner you awards, recognitions, raises or promotions.  They just give you stress and make your career growth slow down to a snail’s pace.

Unplanned activities turn you from a strategist into a fire fighter.  What kind of fires are you putting out?  Late deliveries, lack of payment, customer service issues, product performance issues, supplier safety issues, inventory problems, production problems, after the fact purchase orders, and on and on.

On top of that, there are plenty of planned activities that are unplanned activities in disguise –regularly scheduled meetings that are in place because all parties involved know that there are so many fires involved in a particular area that ad hoc meetings are not enough – you have to keep meeting regularly to discuss the status of the various fires in the pipeline.

Is this how you wanted to spend your life?  Your career?  Putting out fires with 70 – 90% of every day?  What could you do with that time if you could waive a wand and make it go to 20%?

This topic takes me two days to teach in a public seminar, so I certainly cannot do justice in a blog, but I hope to drive change with my loyal readers.

The PSCM profession, despite being filled with highly capable and educated professionals, is getting better and better at the wrong things, which provides the illusion of progress.  I want you to throw your procurement process out the window and start over.

Chief Purchasing Officers, I’m talking to you:  Your organizations need to be soliciting, negotiating, and contracting for PERFORMANCE RESULTS.  Suppliers need to have skin in the game, with rigorous metrics and pay for performance models.  And your people eventually have to develop success metrics when they do supplier report cards, so why not have them do this up front, before the supplier has your company’s money?   EVERYTHING changes after suppliers have your money.

Now is the time to make a difference.  Go off and do something wonderful!

Be your best!

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Meeting Minutes

Meeting Minutes

Minutes of the VALUE Meeting
July 19, 2017

  Name Organization
Barwick, Robert City of West Allis
 x Fleming, Matt Kenosha County
  Hartmann, Roy Washington County
  Jacobson, JoAnne Port Washington/Saukville School District
  Jeffries, Karen City of Milwaukee
 x Kurer, Bill Washington County
 x Martin, Catherine Waukesha County
 x McKinney, Duane Racine County
 x Matz, Cindy Walworth County
 x Nash, Vicky Waukesha County Technical College
  Schaack, Beth City of Waukesha
Schleimer, Laurel City of Wauwatosa
 x White, Jen Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District







Common Solutions / Open Forum Discussion

  • Laurie Schleimer asked if anyone was having issues with the switchover to Office Depot on the VALUE Office Supplies contract. Laurie indicated she’s having issues with invoices, etc. Nobody else is having issues. Laurie mentioned that Cindy Greco is assisting with resolution of her issues.

  • We discussed Office Supply contracts in general, and that VALUE should only target creating cooperative contracts that are not covered under other cooperatives.

  • We discussed the cell phone contract with the State of Wisconsin. Apparently it has expired.

  • Matt Fleming asked if anyone is using WisBuy. Robert Barwick mentioned he was considering it, because they are starting to have more items available.

  • Jen White asked if anyone uses Amazon Business. Duane McKinney and Bill Kurer indicated they do. She’s looking for a way to track who is buying what. Duane indicated he thinks Amazon Business can do this. Robert Barwick mentioned that US Communities has a contract and Jen mentioned they would likely use.

  • Bill Kurer asked if anyone uses electronic bidding on Onvia DemandStar. Nobody has. He’d like to look into it, but nobody at Onvia DemandStar will call him back. Robert Barwick mentioned that ESM might have the electronic bidding option as well.

  • Duane McKinney asked if anyone has noticed an increase in fraud on the p-cards? Catherine Martin mentioned she’s seen a recent increase.

  • Robert Barwick asked if anyone has a bid he could use for recording their 9-1-1 and other calls. If so, please send a copy of it to him.

  • Robert Barwick asked if anyone has a suggestion for prequalifying vendors for court-ordered building demolition. In these types of demolitions, the destruction is often time sensitive and there are frequently unusual situations – such as Hazmat requirements. However, each situation is different, making it difficult to create an RFP or bid. Jen White and Matt Fleming mentioned they have a prequalified list for each service that may be required, and that they did an RFP/bid for each service.

  • Robert asked how everyone was constructing their bids for electrical contracts. Laurie Schleimer said they create a prequalification list and the prequalified vendors can do any work up to $25,000.

  • Catherine Martin asked for samples of bids for inmate food service, paratransit, and meals on wheels.

Business Meeting 

  • Treasurer’s Report as of 6/30/2017:

Checking:  $15,013.64
Savings:  $10,011.55

  • New Members:  Village of Rothschild


  • Audit Procedures: 

    Matt Fleming indicated he has reached out to Schenk, but they do not seem interested in providing services for us. He will reach out to Baker Tilly and possibly some other firms.

  • eProcurement & Shopping Cart Discussion

We discussed creating a VALUE shopping cart on our website to offer our membership. US Communities has one, but people can only show from US Communities contracts. The State of Wisconsin also has WisBuy, but their cart only allows you to shop from State contracts. If VALUE built our own, we would allow price comparisons across multiple cooperatives. Bill Kurer mentioned that with everyone having staff even further reduced, having a VALUE shopping cart across multiple cooperative agreements could be a help for many governmental entities.

Vicky Nash mentioned they used SciQuest for the shopping cart they use, and then switched to ESM, and that the process runs well. They will be adding Amazon to their shopping cart soon. She investigated the costs for VALUE to piggyback from their contract. Based on our current membership, the ballpark costs would be:

$20,000 for the initial set-up
$19,000 per year

Given our current income from membership fees, this would not be sustainable. We would need to raise our membership costs or charge to use the feature. 

Using the ESM software, reports would be available to show who spent how much. An invoice is attached, and 100% of the payments would be on p-card.

Jen White asked how it works when a contract expires – does the basket go away? Do we need to take down the option from the site? This is something we would have to address.

Bill Kurer asked if there is a rebate that we could use to help fund the costs? Vicky said there is no rebate and we would have to pay for the service.

Matt Fleming explained that ESM does not negotiate the contracts – we would need to do that. ESM only sets-up the portal software.

We would want the ability to price compare the costs of items across the various contracts. It must be easy to compare and use.

We discussed that WisBuy does something similar. However, there is no fee, and it only covers State of Wisconsin contracts. Robert Barwick indicated we could perhaps partner with the State of Wisconsin, and help promote and train our membership on how to use WisBuy. Cindy will contact Brenda Derge regarding this option.


Annual Meeting Planning

The hotel has been reserved. 

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Piggyback Updates


Below are changes or additions to the various piggyback opportunities available to VALUE member agencies.  Visit the piggyback page on the VALUE website, and click on the Pig to see the full list.

Do you have a contract to add to the list? Contact to add your contracts to the piggyback list!

New Contracts

Arborjet Tree Injection Supplies and Support
Employee Benefits Consulting Services
EMS Medical Supplies
Hydroflourosilicic Acid


Contract Extensions



Contract Expirations




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State of Wisconsin Contract Updates


Updates to State of Wisconsin contracts are issued weekly by the State of Wisconsin.  VALUE is reprinting the weekly information received as a courtesy to our members. 

The following contracts have been updated for the week of 7/10/2017 - 7/14/2017:

505ENT-O11-AEDANDACCS-00 Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) and Accessories - This Contract Has Been Extended Through November 30, 2017

505ENT-M06-SIGNAGECON-01 Signage - Renewed contract until 10/31/2018.

505ENT-M15-MOTOR FUEL-00 Motor Fuels – Statewide - Updated Vendor Contact List

505ENT-M18-DRUGTSTSUP-00 Drug Testing Products and Services - New Contract


The following contracts have been updated for the week of 7/17/2017 - 7/21/2017:


505ENT-O15-FLOORING-00 Statewide Flooring Including Commercial Carpet, Resilient Coverings (Virgin and Recycled) and Related Services - Added Products for Sergenian's

505ENT-M15-HZRDSWSTSV-01 Hazardous Wastes Services - Updated contract pricing.

505ENT-O13-POWERTOOLS-00 Hand and Power Tools - Updated Hilti price list

505ENT-M18-DATAENTRYS-00 Data Entry Services - New Contract

505ENT-M17-WIRELESSPH-0x Wireless Telephony and Broadband Plans, Equipment and Support - New Contract


The following contracts have been updated for the week of 7/24/2017 - 7/28/2017:

505ENT-M16-CUSTOM-01 Class 8 Printing: Custom Forms: Continuous and Snapset - Corrected DOA-3404 MultiPly Print Order the comment at bottom right for "exact repeat" to direct the user to the top left for the proper entry

505ENT-O17-SALESFORCE-00 Salesforce Implementation Services - Corrected a link within the Quick Guide.

505ENT-O16-ELECRECYCLE-01 Recycling of Electronic Waste Services - Exercised a one-year renewal option on the contract.

505ENT-O16-NASPOCOMPUT-00 NASPO Computer Equipment, Peripherals, and Related Services - Updated the Excel File with Bands, Contractors, Auth Resellers and STAR info

505ENT-O15-FLOORING-00 Statewide Flooring Including Commercial Carpet, Resilient Coverings (Virgin and Recycled) and Related Services - Added Products to Nonn's and Removed Products from Creative Solutions

505ENT-O16-COURTREPORT-00 Court Reporter Services and Transcription Services:

  • Northwestern Court Reporters has a new contact person.
  • Principle Court Reporting has a new reduced 21-day delivery rate.
  • Contract is renewed for one year through 7/31/2018.


The following contracts have been updated for the week of 7/31/2017 - 8/4/2017:

505ENT-M17-RATECERT-00 Class 5 Legal/Public Notices: Rate Certification Program - Certification Rates Bulletin updated for August 2017

505ENT-M15-HZRDSWSTSV-01 Hazardous Wastes Services - Updated fuel surcharge rates.

505 ENT-M15 COALDELVRY-01 Bituminous Coal Supply & Management Services - Extended contract through June 30, 2020.

505ENT-M18-DRUGTSTSUP-00 Drug Testing Products and Services - Updated Vendor Contact Information

505ENT-M17-DENTALSUP-00 Dental Supplies - Renewed Darby Dental and Dental Health Products, Inc. Henry Schein is in the Process of Renewing the Contract 

505ENT-O15-FLOORING-00 Statewide Flooring Including Commercial Carpet, Resilient Coverings (Virgin and Recycled) and Related Services - Added Products for Creative Solutions.  Added Products For Sergenians



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NIGP Webinars


NIGP Webinars

Construction Project Delivery: Construction Manager at Risk

Date:  August 16, 2017
Time:  1:00-2:30 CST

This webinar will address the steps it takes to solicit, select, and negotiate a contract for construction management. Included will be the preliminary steps necessary to determine the best delivery method and the cost and benefits of each. Then, the presentation will describe in detail the process of selecting Construction Manager at Risk, including case studies. Ultimately, we will see how the owner, designer, and contractor collaborate to make a successful project. Samples of projects and the magnitude of their success will be compared. The target audience are those who are starting out in procurement.

The Supplier-Practitioner Connection: Adding Value to Procurement

Date:  September 20, 2017
Time:  1:00-2:30 CST

In this online training session, The NIGP Business Council will explain the various ways that suppliers can add value to every procurement, regardless of the procurement strategy an agency adopts. Whether the issue is sustainability, financial options, or socio-economic conditions, you will discover the benefits of how working with suppliers can help your procurement strategies lead to success. 

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