[Cato] FW: WIPHE Language

Jess Thompson jess.thompson at sbctc.edu
Wed Nov 1 17:13:44 PDT 2017

Just sent this on to the 2yr and 4yr group of disability support professionals after a thread where UW, yet again, suggested SBCTC procure and manage a contract for some software thing that's cheap enough the colleges can just do a direct buy.

Thought I'd pass it along to you all in case similar conversations come up - like the SiteImprove stuff...

Abraham also gave us kudos because he was in a WaTech webinar where accessibility came up as a "coming down the pike" issue regarding procurement and he realized we're so far ahead of every other state agency. :)

Jess Thompson
Program Administrator, Accessible Technology Initiatives
p: 360.704.4327 | c: 253.229.8591
Current Projects<https://docs.google.com/document/d/1KXjxctpTAa2R06iRksMrjaeiCkphAJzqkwX-awvJh9g/edit?usp=sharing>

From: Jess Thompson
Sent: Wednesday, November 1, 2017 5:06 PM
To: 'WAPED' <waped at u.washington.edu>
Subject: WIPHE Language

What is WIPHE?

      In 1993, the Washington State Legislature passed HB 1509, which among other things, granted Washington's public higher education institutions independent purchasing authority for goods and services. To maximize the benefit of that authority, Washington's public four-year institutions along with the state's community and technical colleges entered into an interlocal cooperation agreement to jointly develop and utilize purchasing contracts. The Council of Presidents and the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges coordinate this process and convene representatives from the institutions to develop policies and procedures for WIPHE contracts.
      Since its inception, the WIPHE process has been utilized by institutions of higher education to save time by reducing overlapping efforts, and maximized the value of taxpayer dollars by leveraging the buying power of multiple institutions to obtain group buying discounts and promotional savings. The WIPHE process is a highly successful collaboration among the two and four-year public institutions of higher education. (Source: https://wiphe.sbctc.edu/default.aspx)

Adding WIPHE language to a contract saves both the vendor and the institution(s) in overhead - it's a great way for a vendor to get their foot in the door at institutions they aren't working with yet, so it's to their benefit to do this and you can market it as just that if trying to negotiate a lower price. For the colleges, they get the same terms and conditions - including price.

Why WIPHE and not SBCTC managed contract?
Let's say a product costs $3,000 for an institution. That's under $10k, so you all can do a direct buy. For SBCTC to lead the way, that $3,000 becomes potentially $102,000 (3k*34) and we must go open and competitive (which requires pulling together a committee that represents the colleges, drafting up a requirements list, putting the RFP out for others to respond to, evaluating the responses, demoing products, coming to an agreement over scoring, then negotiating the contract - for captioning that took... 6 months? - and we could end up selecting a different vendor than the one you're working with, and then you may be unhappy with the results and not want to opt in). So, from my perspective, an RFP makes sense when looking for a service where we want to compare vendors and products, not when looking to buy a particular product that you've already selected.

Adding WIPHE to contracts
Ok, so how to get the WIPHE stuff into your contracts (this is from our contracts guru, Abraham Rocha - arocha at sbctc.edu<mailto:arocha at sbctc.edu> - feel free to reach out to him if you have questions):

In the RFP:
I either include the language in the Definitions or as a separate section:

      "Authorized Purchaser" shall mean all members of the Washington Institutions of Public Higher Education (WIPHE) consortium and all institutions participating in this RFP.

      1.7       WIPHE (Additional Authorized Purchasers)
      Any contracts resulting from this RFP will be available to all members of the Washington Institutions of Public Higher Education (WIPHE).  They shall be included as authorized purchasers.

It's redundant to state it in both places, but at least it is quite clear.  Also, it's something that I like to bring up in the Vendor Preproposal conference so that the bidders know they should be really competitive and give us the best deal possible because it has real potential to be used by everyone.

In the Contract:

      "Authorized Purchaser" shall mean all members of the Washington Institutions of Public Higher Education (WIPHE) consortium.

That's it for the contract.  You can also reference that it came from the RFP, but it is otherwise unnecessary.

Hope that helps,

Jess Thompson
Program Administrator, Accessible Technology Initiatives
Washington State Board for Community & Technical Colleges
1300 Quince St SE | PO Box 42495 | Olympia, WA 98504
p: 360.704.4327|c: 253.229.8591
jess.thompson at sbctc.edu<mailto:jess.thompson at sbctc.edu> | www.sbctc.edu<http://www.sbctc.edu/>
Current Projects<https://docs.google.com/document/d/1KXjxctpTAa2R06iRksMrjaeiCkphAJzqkwX-awvJh9g/edit?usp=sharing>

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