Manufacturers' Associationfor Information Technology (MAIT), the apex body representing IT manufacturers, conducted a sensitization workshop on 'Good Procurement Practices for Information Technology' in association with the Department of Information and Technology, Government of Kerala. The workshop laid emphasis on the need for adoption of best practices for IT Procurement by government and semi-government organizations. More than 150 officers from different government departments attended the event and gained insights on IT Procurement Procedures being followed in the IT industry.
While delivering the keynote address, Mr P H Kurian IAS, Principal Secretary, Industries & IT, Government of Kerala discussed the importance of standardization of procedures in procurement of IT goods and services. He said, "There is a great potential for small and medium sized companies in government procurement. We should try and bring in innovative procurement practices such as the Swiss Challenge process in software procurement, which is part of the approved IT Policy. This will enable the government to get quality products in least possible time."
Mr Kurian also expressed his thoughts on how to formulate vendor neutral specifications so that tenders are not biased towards any particular manufacturer. The Government of Kerala is working with MAIT for developing an IT Procurement policy for the state. The new policy aims to bring in greater transparency and much higher participation.
Apart from Mr Kurian, the other prominent speakers included Mr K Mohammed Y Safirulla IAS, Director, Kerala State IT Mission, Mr Anwar Shirpurwala, Executive Director, MAIT and Mr Ankur Malhotra, VP- GR & PP, Accenture. The event was organized by MAIT in association with BSA and Accenture as knowledge partners.
Mr Anwar Shirpurwala, Executive Director, MAIT said, "The workshop was conducted with a purpose to interact with the state government officials and share good practices of procurement with respect to e-governance projects. We were quite thrilled to see the high level participation and enthusiasm displayed by the government officials in Kerala. This was the first state where more than 150 officials participated, the largest among all states where such workshops have been organized so far."
The workshop was aimed at creating a free, secure and transparent environment for procurement of IT goods and services. The delegates emphasized the need for reviewing existing IT procurement procedures, identifying vulnerabilities and streamlining processes to make them more efficient. They also advocated the need for greater IT orientation and creation of a comprehensive IT procurement system for government and semi-government organizations.