Getting the Right Stuff: A Practical Solution to Procurement
by Jenny Choban on November 5, 2017
Procurement isn’t like impulse shopping. (Or at least it shouldn’t be!) The folks charged with overseeing your organization’s procurement process need to make sure that the right steps are being taken and the right questions are being asked. Those steps might look something like this:
- Identify the specific need.
Why is the new item needed? What are the requirements? Who will use it? Could it be used in ways beyond its designated purpose? Could more than one business team share use of the item? If so, what are the other team’s requirements?
- Source the item.
Who are the available suppliers? Is there a supplier that the organization has already been designated as an approved vendor? How many quotes are required before making a decision? What factors (other than price) might influence which supplier you use? What would be considered an acceptable rationale for not going with the lowest bid?
- Negotiate price and terms.
Can you get a better deal for buying at scale? Or establishing a long-term relationship with the supplier? What about a service warranty?
- Draw up a purchase order.
This will serve as the contract for the purchase. Are all the details included and correct?
- Receive the item.
Inspect the item upon receipt to ensure that it is indeed the item ordered and that it has arrived undamaged.
- Approve payment.
Do the specs on the receiving document, the invoice and the purchase order match?
- Document the purchase.
The item is now part of the organization’s assets. Does it need to be tracked on a depreciation schedule? Do you have a way of tracking when servicing is due?
ProForma Forms & Templates for Jira: A Practical Solution to Procurement
That’s a lot of steps to track and a lot of questions to answer. It calls for a system. Fortunately, the system you’re looking for may be right at your fingertips. Atlassian provides a purchasing template with a designated workflow as part of Jira Core.
Jira is a great tool for tracking a process. But what if your data collection needs go beyond what the Atlassian template was designed to handle? For items with complex requirements, which is fairly common if you’re working in a highly regulated industry, just documenting the requirements can be a big job. You need a way to make sure you’ve accurately captured all the data. And once you’ve gone to the trouble of identifying all of those pieces, it would be nice to be able to re-use your work.
This is where ProForma Forms & Templates for Jira can help. ProForma empowers teams to create, deploy and manage forms right within Jira. Your procurement team can design a form to collect all of the correct information when an internal customer wants to procure a new vehicle (there’s a process in our template library to get you started), or when it’s finally time to replace the copy machine. Rather than having all of the pertinent information dumped together in a description field, forms allow teams to identify the specific pieces of information they need, validated to their parameters.
Best of all, your procurement team can get this specific information without requiring a slew of custom fields from you. In fact, you may find that ProForma actually decreases the need for Jira administration even as it helps you bring more business teams into Jira.