Choosing & Contracting Consultants A Procurement Guide for First Nations

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Choosing & Contracting Consultants A Procurement Guide for First Nations

  1. 1. Choosing & Contracting Consultants A Procurement Guide For First Nations Brenda Ireland, ICAB
  2. 2. Is a Consultant Really Needed? • ‘Right’ consultant beneficial • Managed properly • Not always perfect • Risks, pros and cons
  3. 3. Contracting a consultant - Pros Short term, focused Quick recruitment Knowledge transfer & capacity development Tailored skills for specific initiative New ideas
  4. 4. Contracting a consultant - Cons Difficult find fit with community Difficult determine fair market value Management = strain overworked staff Can be unpopular with staff & community Monitoring contractual obligations = time consuming/costly
  5. 5. Contracting a consultant - Risks Negate contract obligations = legal wrangling, unfulfilled contract, delivery of poor outcomes Undelivered contract = difficult with funding / disappointed community Badly drafted contract = lacks enforcement Contract process seen biased and unfair Budget and time over-runs End product less that expected
  6. 6. How to Know if a Consultant is Really Needed? First step = define project’s goals/ objectives Scoping • Know exactly what community needs • Know exactly what project needs • Prepare to evaluate/reject unsolicited offers
  7. 7. Scoping Project Checklist Objectives/goals Need for project Resources Human Financial Time Work plan / Time frame How work will get done Deliverables (products) Roles & Responsibilities Qualifications Procurement Approach
  8. 8. Scoping ??? But I don’t have time! Options Engage others Contract consultant Be cautious ineligible to bid on contract Ensure contract clarity RFP – include scoping
  9. 9. How to Select a Consultant Procurement Policy RFQ Gathers info Short list potential bidders RFP Clear Draft and bounce Choose right person to lead procurement Understand project scope/value Able to assess bids Pull together/educate Selection Committee
  10. 10. Factors in Procurement Process Fairness Bidders know proposal considered Follow Through Communicate outcome Transparency Same info in bidding process
  11. 11. Considering community businesses Procurement Policy Objectivity  external verification project costs  minimize concerns about favouritism
  12. 12. How to Evaluate Proposals/choose consultant Establish evaluation criteria Depend on project/community ‘Score’ or ‘rank’ proposals vs criteria Criteria Complicated project = more criteria Create chart or matrix
  13. 13. Criteria Proposed Concept Methodology Deliverables Cost Timeline Experience Qualifications Capacity Building Score Consultant A Consultant B Consultant C 4 3.5 2
  14. 14. Criteria Priority Matrix Some criteria may be more important than others  Weigh criteria Assign percentages
  15. 15. Criteria Priority Percentage Proposed Concept 10% Deliverables and Methodology 15% Cost 30% Qualifications and Experience 30% Capacity Building 15% Total 100%
  16. 16. What Should the Contract Include? Can be time consuming Proposal work plan Elements of funding proposal Clear, concise, no room for interpretation
  17. 17. Elements to Include DELIVERABLES PAYMENT SCHEDULE KEY TASKS BUDGET TIMELINE ENFORCEMENT LEGAL ASPECTS OTHERS ????
  18. 18. Finding consultant particular challenge for FN who are stretched to the limit at the best of times: Seek assistance: • Reach out to other First Nations • AANDC • FN Organizations – ICAB, CANDO, AFOA • Bullies make horrid consultants

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