DPS Education Procurement Fundamentals

As the City of Chicago, we are a large consumer of goods and services. We pride ourselves on
providing a level playing field for all companies that want to do business with us, along
with providing substantial opportunities for small minority and women-owned
businesses. This is done through our Department of Procurement Services or DPS. DPS is the contracting authority
for the procurement of goods and services for the City of Chicago. So what are we
all about? As our mission, we pledge to work together to guarantee an open, fair and timely contracting
process by establishing, communicating, enforcing
superior business practices. Integrity, Public Trust and the Law are
our guiding principles. DPS is a customer service department that contracts for the goods and services needed by
our user departments to run the City of Chicago. We consider
our clients as not only the City’s User Departments, but also the vendor community and the
citizens of our city. DPS procures goods and services from
every size business with contracts ranging from less than
$10,000 to $140,000,000. How it works, is that the City’s User Departments
determined their particular needs and requirements for goods and services.
Then, DPS goes to the marketplace to seek these goods and services necessary to
meet those needs. This is where you, as a vendor, come in. There is an
opportunity for almost every type and size of business to work with the City of Chicago. As far as the diversity of goods and
services that the City of Chicago needs, we at DPS are looking for everything from
suppliers of dog food to development at the airport runways. In
our buying plan, the potential contracting opportunities
are divided into seven functional category: Construction,
Professional Services, Commodities, Work Services, Vehicles and Heavy Equipment,
Architecture and Engineering, and small orders, which are purchases under a $100,000 A commitment to the law is one of our
guiding principles. We are committed to the highest
standards with our community for an open, fair, and timely process for procuring goods and services. The
laws that govern us are the State Purchasing Act, the
Municipal Code of Chicago, and Federal laws and regulations. There
are a number of different types of procurement methods, depending on goods and services required. 1. Competitive bids, such as most construction or commodities, are based on low price. 2. Request for proposals or RFP, where the scope of the project dictates that additional factors, such as specialized experience, are
considered. 3. Request for qualifications or RFQ, which is used to create a pool of qualified candidates that user departments can solicit for specific tasks. And finally, Job Order Contracts, for
small and medium-sized construction projects. Another one of our key objectives is to
bring greater diversity to the pool businesses that bit on and earn City contracts. A thriving small,
minority and women-owned business community is essential to the success the world-class city. We continually
strive to develop ways to move these goals forward. To this end, DPS has developed a
number a bid incentives and programs, such as the Veteran’s/Small Business Bid
Incentive, the Diversity Credit Program, Small Business Initiative, M/WBE
Mentorship Program, and the Alternatively Powered Vehicle Ordinance. DPS conducts extensive outreach to
educate the vendor community about the procurement process. Below are
some ways that you can keep in touch with us and find out about the latest news. The
Buying Plan is a tool that the City uses to forecast
the goods and services that it expects to procure in the next
six quarters. The document also contains frequently asked questions about the procurement process with the
City as well as contact information for individual User Departments and web
links to the procurement divisions of our sister agencies and other
government entities. The latest version at the Buying
Plan is always available on the DPS website: at www.cityofchicago.org/dps On a weekly basis, DPS
sends e-mail alert called DPS Alerts. Every
Monday, we issue a Bid Opportunity list itemizes is what is currently advertised. Most every project that is advertised
includes a Pre-submittal Conference that includes a discussion of the
solicitation, the scope of work and procurement
requirements. We encourage potential vendors to attend these meetings for
each project they’re interested in. We are posting daily about new bit opportunities, events, free workshops or other areas of interest to the vendor community. You can follow us on Facebook or Twitter
for the latest information. In addition, DPS staff teaches fifteen
different workshops either monthly or quarterly on how to do
business with the City, procurement, certification and compliance
issues. On behalf of the City of Chicago, we highly value the relationship with
our vendors who provide goods and services throughout the city. We are dedicated to support vendors
interested in growing and doing business in the City of Chicago.
Chicago truly is the “City that Works” and we want to work with you!

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