FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 1, 2020
Contact: Andrea Foren, CPPO, CPPB
City of Fayetteville Moves to Digital Procurement Process
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The City of Fayetteville has contracted with Bonfire, a cloud-based online procurement software provider, to support cost and time savings, improve collaboration across internal departments, and strengthen vendor relations. The City anticipates that this change will result in better outcomes internally and for the greater Fayetteville community.
The new process provides software that helps the City’s procurement team find the right vendors to work with through the RFP and bid process to make best-value spending decisions. Bonfire’s platform offers an automated workflow, built-in compliance for purchasing processes, and simplifies the procurement process with easy-to-use tools.
An electronic review process will allow the City to transition away from requiring vendors to submit large amounts of paper when responding to a formal solicitation. Currently, responses to requests for proposals are broken down and recycled after a contract is awarded by City Council. Reducing or eliminating paper submittals helps support the City’s waste reduction and recycling diversion goals.
City of Fayetteville Engineer Chris Brown, P.E. stated: “Electronic bidding makes it easier and faster for our suppliers and contractors to get their bids put together. This can result in more interest from bidders, which can mean lower bids and a reduction in cost to the taxpayers.”
Internal efficiencies will be increased by removing a manual process to check for calculation errors on larger vendor construction bids. The manual process can be time consuming, but it remains a key component to verifying and certifying bid tabulations for evaluation and award. Vendors will be able to more easily review the bid prior to the deadline, even minutes beforehand, and make adjustments as necessary to ensure accuracy.
“We’re thrilled to partner with Bonfire and support the digital transformation of procurement workflow. This change will enable our vendor community improved access to submit bids and other solicitation responses online rather than having to physically deliver submittals to City Hall or mail them,” said Andrea Foren, purchasing manager for the City of Fayetteville. “This really gives the City an expanded capability for vendor outreach and exposure. Bonfire has had great success working with similar clients, and we look forward to bringing efficiencies to the City of Fayetteville and vendor community.”
Bonfire implementation has been in process for several weeks; however, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the process was expedited recently in efforts to provide vendors with an electronic option to submit bids. All active bids with an established deadline were postponed as a result of City Hall being closed to the public. The City’s Purchasing Division will begin working with interested parties on current projects to bring them up to speed on bidding through Bonfire.
Registration is open and free to anyone interested in doing business with the City of Fayetteville online at the Purchasing Division section of the City’s website by clicking here or going to www.fayetteville-ar.gov/bids. Vendors will be required to register as a vendor with the City in order to be eligible to submit bids and respond to requests for proposals (RFPs) and requests for statements of qualification (RFQs). Once registered, vendors will be able to update their information electronically, including tax identification information, addresses, email and phone numbers.