Professional Service Contracts by Joseph Tramontana
This blog post is the second in a five part series regarding professional service contracts. Last week we talked about making the list of vendors expansive as possible. The more choices that are available means there will be more competition, which is known to drive down costs.
This article discusses the topic known as Statement of Work or Scope of Work (SOW). The SOW is simply a well-written guide regarding the actual service that you want to procure. The document should be so well written and clear that no one would have any doubt about the service the vendor is bidding on. The SOW is the first opportunity for the contracting unit to explain to the potential competitors exactly what they want to be done. A clearly written document will elicit more vendors competing and more importantly competing for the exact work the contracting unit wants.
In addition to clarity, the SOW needs to be complete and specific. An accurate scope of work can be accomplished by working with the department that needs the work done. If you’re hiring a labor attorney than it is a good idea to reach out to the Human Resources Director for his/her input on the scope of work that needs to be done. The Purchasing Department should actively seek input from the intended beneficiaries. Another common mistake is that contracting units tend to focus on the process they wish to see the vendor use. Instead, the contracting unit should emphasize the results they want to see achieved and let the vendor use their process in getting the results.
A clearly written scope of work that emphasizes results will go a long way in assuring that you find the right company that performs the right tasks. This saves money in the long run by assuring you hire the right company at the right price.