Commodity contracts are often awarded on the basis of price. A price-based methodology for making such awards fails to consider the suppliers' ability to minimize the risk of non-performance in terms of cost, schedule, or customer satisfaction. Literature suggests that nearly all risk in the delivery of commodities is in the interfacing of nodes within a supply chain. Therefore, commodity suppliers should be selected on the basis of their past performance, ability to identify and minimize risk, and capacity to preplan the delivery of services. Organizations that select commodity suppliers primarily on the basis of price may experience customer dissatisfaction, delayed services, low product quality, or some combination thereof. One area that is often considered a "commodity" is the delivery of furniture services. Arizona State University, on behalf of the Arizona Tri-University Furniture Consortium, approached the researcher and identified concerns with their current furnishing services contract. These concerns included misaligned customer expectations, minimal furniture supplier upfront involvement on large capital construction projects, and manufacturer design expertise was not being utilized during project preplanning. The Universities implemented a best value selection process and risk management structure. The system has resulted in a 9.3 / 10 customer satisfaction rating (24 percent increase over the previous system), for over 1,100 furniture projects totaling $19.3M.
- Management of facility commodity contracts: a model for the furniture services industry
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Statement of Responsibility
by Jake Smithwick