The tracking list : a powerful tool to manage tenders with SLA.

The processes  that contains SLA have been identified (and described) during  the Operational Process  Analysis .
The next milestone is to plan the content  of a powerful monitor tool: the tracking list.

The tracking list is a database in which all the necessary steps of the execution of each offer and eventual order are recorded (Fig 1).

Fig 1 – scope of the tracking list

The BPMN charts are the necessary source to plan the content of the tracking list.
The order process BPMN is the first chart used to start the plan (Fig 2).

Fig 2 - Tracking list of the offer BPMN

Fig 2 – Tracking list of the offer BPMN

Introducing any measure of a process, obliges the analyst to reflect deeper on the process itself and on the content of the tender.

Interpretation of the tender.
Let’s take for example the measure “SLA offer”.    In this process, the SLA is the respect (or not) of a specific  time interval. I believe there is no problem to define the end of this interval: the date at which the offer is done. Now, when the interval starts? This is not defined in the tender document.  Does it start in the moment that the contractor receives the request of the offer?  The analyst should look for the answer, first of all, in the bid answers of the tender phase. In this case, there was no bid question. So, the analyst is now obliged to interpret the tender.

It is quite clear from Fig 2 that the analyst interpreted that the interval starts when the customer has supplied all the necessary technical information.
This interpretation implies not only that it is necessary to track when the customer has supplied all the necessary information, but also that in the ISO 9001 QMS it is necessary to describe how this point is reached.  It might be when the customer accepts the technical configuration; in other case it might be when the customer requests the offer if he provides the technical configuration and he does not ask for a technical validation. It is important to deeply reflect and document any interpretation because, at  a certain point of the life of the contract, it will be necessary to present it to the customer (for example in the moment of a request of liquidate damage). That is why the interpretation should be agreed by the main stakeholders and not just by the analyst.

BIT Information Management System for the tracking list
In the balanced scorecard developed by  BIT,  it was clearly identified the need of a tracking tool. It was also decided to develop a solution for the first tender that was mainly based on the current structure of the BIT management information system, accepting some manual job.  Based on an experience of at least 4 years, it would be then possible to develop (or buy)  a new, automated, tracking solutions (at that point not just for public tenders).
Fig 3 illustrates how  BIT planned the Information management system in order to implement a  tracking list tool.

Fig 3 Information Management System

Fig 3 Information Management System

For the implementation of this tracking list, it was necessary to add a manual data input, using  Access, in order to introduce data (related to the offer phases) that were never collected previously and it was easily possible to store (and retrieve) in Navision.

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