“BuyWi$e Oklahoma” Program to Save State Millions

“BuyWi$e Oklahoma” Program to Save State Millions

State officials announced today that a

new spending initiative will lead to almost $25 million in ongoing savings.

The savings are part of the “BuyWi$e Oklahoma” program, an in-depth study

by IBM consultants of state purchasing with recommendations to modernize

procedures without sacrificing valuable programs.

Funding for the BuyWi$e Oklahoma program was provided by State Treasurer

Scott Meacham’s office. “We have an opportunity through this program to

implement purchasing procedures used by the private sector to make state

purchasing more efficient,” Meacham said.

“In the past, state government has spent more than it should to buy

products and services by failing to adequately focus the state’s aggregate

purchasing power. If we will learn from the recommendations IBM is making,

we can make sure the taxpayers’ money is stretched as far as possible,”

Meacham said.

The initial savings identified by IBM include reform of how the state buys

food, office products, copiers/printers and maintenance and upkeep of

buildings and grounds. Savings of $23.5 million over the next four years

are projected for copier/printer spending alone, according to John Richard,

Director of the Department of Central Services. The Department of Central

Services is responsible for implementing the recommendations of the

purchasing study.

Selected through competitive bidding, IBM consultants have studied current

state purchasing practices and, per contract terms, will identify annual

savings of at least $9 million.

Richard said the projected savings for copiers and printers will be

realized through two primary changes. First, a single contract will be made

for all copier and printer services to state government. Savings will be

made through the large volume of business provided by the vendor. Next,

agencies will be provided the tools to assess their needs and most

efficiently configure their equipment needs.

Richard said he is committed to making the BuyWi$e Oklahoma initiative a

success.

“I am pleased to participate in this innovative approach to purchasing,” he

said. “DCS supports Treasurer Meacham’s efforts to reduce government costs

while being responsive to citizens’ needs. As the initiative develops, DCS

will also build and strengthen bridges between state government and our

in-state businesses. Oklahoma companies are the backbone of our economy and

we are committed to making sure this process takes this into account.”

Contact:

Gerry Smedley

Oklahoma Department of Central Services

405-522-8519