Global Best Practice - Information Technology (IT) Procurement: No. 1

This practice is the first in a series of four that focuses on the specifics of information technology (IT) procurement. When procuring a commodity that falls within the realm of IT (e.g., hardware and software products and services), it's important for procurement professionals to have knowledge of the specific IT area for the procured commodity, including understanding the terminology and attributes of a specific IT area. By fully understanding the IT area that is being procured, procurement professionals can ensure successful collaboration with suppliers and end users. This practice provides an in-depth look at the four types of IT commodities: software, hardware, services, and support and maintenance. It details specific considerations that should be taken into account during the procurement process to help procurement professionals write specifications. It also includes checklists of the unique attributes of the IT industry and the results of those attributes, which must be considered when determining potential impacts of procuring new technology. IT can be complex, and so an IT procurement plan may need to include additional steps compared with procurement plans for other types of commodities. This practice includes additional steps and initiatives that may need to be added to an IT procurement plan, including requests for information (RFI), re-designing business processes, strategic sourcing, pilot programs, negotiation, public demonstrations, and well-established timelines.