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ARCHIVED - Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Canadian Polar Commission and Indian Specific Claims Commission

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Procurement and Contracting

Role played by procurement and contracting in delivering programs

The procurement and contracting activity supports the delivery of programs within INAC’s headquarters and its 11 regional offices. In addition to enabling all departmental personnel to acquire the office furniture, furnishings, desktop computers, stationery, supplies and equipment they need, this activity allows INAC to obtain professional and consulting services, from the private sector, in pursuit of its responsibilities to First Nations, Inuit and Northerners. It provides a wide range of services, from diamond valuation and mine management to auditing, program evaluation, specific claims and litigation research, federal negotiators’ services and training support.

Overview of how the department manages its contracting functions

Although the departmental contract management process is decentralized, it remains mostly under the responsibility of the procurement specialists’ community, save for low-value goods and services purchased by departmental employees with acquisition cards (MasterCard and Visa) or by using a Low-Dollar Value (LDV) service contract tool (up to $15,000, including GST/HST).

All departmental responsibility centre managers (RCMs) have been delegated a signing authority of $25,000 to award non-competitive service contracts, $400,000 for service contracts following an invitational competitive process and $2,000,000 for a service contract resulting from a bid solicitation on the Government Electronic Tendering Service (MERX). The department has a $25,000 delegated authority for the procurement of goods.

Purchase orders, call-ups against Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) standing offers, and requisitions to PWGSC are handled by dedicated procurement specialists.

Service contracts of less than $25,000 are prepared by RCMs for issuance by procurement specialists at headquarters or in the regions. All competitive and non-competitive service contracts in excess of $25,000 are managed exclusively by procurement specialists at headquarters and in the regions.

RCMs can use acquisition cards to buy goods up to $5,000; for purchases over $5,000, a requisition is processed by departmental procurement specialists.

INAC issued 3,892 goods and services contracts in 2006–2007, worth $242 million, not including acquisition card transactions worth $15.6 million.

Progress and new initiatives enabling effective and efficient procurement practices

  • Conducted 38,045 acquisition card (MasterCard and Visa) transactions at a value of nearly $15.6 million, having increased the number of cards issued from 747 in 2004–2005 to 836 in 2005–2006.
  • Issued approximately 396 procurements, with a potential value of nearly $49 million, to Aboriginal suppliers.
  • Prepared an action plan in response to an internal audit on contracting and purchasing.
  • Implemented proactive disclosure of all contracts of $10,000 or more on the departmental Web site.
  • Moved to a new version of the department’s Oracle-based Enterprise Financial and Materiel Management System effective April 1, 2005.
  • Served as members on the Treasury Board Advisory Committee on Contracts, the PWGSC Client Advisory Board on the Way Forward, various Way Forward commodity teams and councils, the Treasury Board Professional Development Advisory Committee and the Material Management Institute Executive Committee.