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AFAC Annual Reports : 2011 Annual Report
Collaborative Purchasing and Contracts An important part of AFAC’s Vision is to facilitate efficiency across the industry. Over the past 5 years it is estimated our member agencies have saved millions of dollars through our collaborative purchasing initiatives, these include both actual dollar savings as well as those achieved through a reduction in the process of procurement. A significant initiative in this area has been the development of a collaborative purchasing contracts section which was added to the Knowledge Web during the year. This new area allows AFAC member agencies the ability to search, browse and identify existing collaborative purchasing agreements that may suit their procurement needs. Contracts are loaded in this online space for the appropriate and authorised parties to access. They are set to automatically expire upon a set date, assuring accuracy for active contracts. This is a very powerful tool and enables all our agencies to take advantage of the most recent tenders, no matter how large or small. Where applicable, contracts are also linked to pertinent specifications documents that have already been established in the Knowledge Web. This not only standardises what is available, but eases administration time for all interested parties. During the year the NSW 292 contract was launched. This is a joint tender between the NSW Rural Fire Service, Fire and Rescue NSW and the NSW Department of Procurement and Government Services in collaboration with the Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council (AFAC). At the launch Mr Russell Shephard, Manager Standards AFAC, provided the forum with an overview of the Collaborative Purchasing Initiative (CPI) outlining benefits that exist for AFAC members and for the industry as a whole. Russell commended both agencies for tirelessly working together to reach consensus on a large number of specifications that underpin this tender. Mr John Hacking, Manager Procurement and Contracts for the Rural Fire Service, NSW, explained that fire and emergency services agencies increasingly operate in an environment where there is competition for available funds from areas such as health, police and education. “As agencies struggle with tightening budgets we are consistently pursuing avenues or initiatives to save financial resources and supply fire fighters on the ground with the equipment they require,” he said. The NSW Fire and Rescue and NSW Rural Fire Service, in partnership with AFAC, and along with the support of the other fire agencies from around Australia and New Zealand, have together been developing a systemic joint approach to agency specifications. This is only the start of what’s to come. The success of this project is demonstrated by the two largest fire fighting agencies in Australia, coming together in a partnership to produce a range of specifications that both agencies have agreed upon. This will not only improve the efficiencies between agencies, but ultimately between all fire agencies across Australia. Pictured Below: AFAC CEO Naomi Brown addresses a meeting of the collaborative purchasing group who meet in Melbourne twice a year “The term, ‘Collaborative Purchasing’, is a term all vendors will be hearing more of in the future...” John Hacking, Manager Procurement and Contracts, Rural Fire Service NSW “...this is the first important step in achieving national specifications and industry standards.” Russell Shephard, AFAC Manager Standards 16 | Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council Annual Report 2011
2010 Annual Report