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Vendor Guide to Doing Business with Miami Dade County Prepared By

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1 Vendor Guide to Doing Business with Miami Dade County Prepared By

2 What We Will Cover… 1. Introduction 2. Getting Started
3. Vendor Enrollment 4. Vendor Registration 5. BidSync 6. Procurement Processes 7. Getting Paid 8. Marketing Your Contract 9. Frequently Asked Questions and Myths 10. Getting More Help

3 1. Introduction State and local governments in the United States spent close to $3 trillion on goods and services last year, the U.S. Federal government spent about $250 billion. Miami Dade County manages in excess of 1,300 active contracts valued at approximately $4.9 billion. Each year they negotiate and award new contracts that exceed $900 million. Miami Dade County currently has approximately 70 annual contracts in place for uniforms, apparel and textiles, such as sheets, blankets, towels and other related items. These have an estimated value of $45,000,000. The largest contract value is $12,900,000 and the smallest is valued at $7,600. With such wide ranges in mind, there is a large opportunity for bidders of all sizes to meet the financial, technical, and production capabilities necessary to perform these contracts, on a case by case basis. Miami Dade County is always looking for qualified new vendors to compete for County business This guide will take you through the steps of how to do business, assist you with finding bid opportunities and get you on the way to becoming a successful vendor with Miami Dade County. The Procurement Management Services Division is a Division of the Internal Services Department of Miami Dade County. They are located at 111 NW 1st Street, 13th Floor, Miami, Florida, Their main phone number is # Miriam Singer, Director. The information contained in this manual is provided for general informational purposes only. Nothing contained herein shall be construed to modify, amend, override, or nullify any statute, policy, or procedure of Miami Dade County or the State of Florida, or any specific provision of any given solicitation used in any competitive procurement.

4 2. Getting Started Understanding how to successfully become a supplier/vendor for local governments in the United States can be quite confusing. There are a lot of rules and regulations, and understanding why and how decisions are made is important to your success. This guide is designed to encourage potential supplier/vendors to form profitable partnerships with Miami Dade County. What is Procurement? Procurement is simply government’s word for purchasing or buying goods and services. While textbooks have been written on the subject, the bottom line is, governments have been charged with the responsibility to get the best value, when spending public money, in a way that is fair and transparent for everybody. There are state, federal and local rules, laws and standards of practice that all need to apply to each purchase. Higher dollar values create more complex processes in order to purchase. Lower dollar values can sometimes be purchased by getting three quotes from vendors.

5 3. Vendor Enrollment
In order for Miami Dade County to know that your company is interested in doing business with them, you need to enroll first. Enroll online as a County vendor today for immediate notification of business opportunities in the area(s) that you have identified in your enrollment application. Go to the website above and the following form will appear. Note: *Fields marked with an asterisk are required. There is a slight problem with this requirement on the application that Miami Dade is aware of…if you Are selecting a Country from the drop down menu, you will still only be able to select states in the United States. While they are working on correcting that, you should select Florida from the States and enter as the zip code.

6 Adding Commodity Codes…
You must select at least one (1) commodity code, but you can select as many as you want. Remember that for everyone that you select, Miami Dade County will notify you about bidding opportunities, so while it seems like a good idea to select all possible commodities, remember that you will get many more s than you may want. To Add a New Commodity Enter your search criteria which will best describe the products and/or services you provide. You can enter more than one word and even the Commodity Codes, if you are familiar with them. By selecting "Matches on any word", those commodities that have at least one of your words/codes in their description will be displayed for you in a selection box. If you select "Matches on all words", those commodities which contain all the words/codes you provide will be displayed for you.

7 Adding Commodity Codes Continued:
By clicking on the "Find Commodities" button, you will be provided with a list of commodities which match your request. When you see a commodity that you want to select, double click on it and it will be added to your commodity code list. If you click on the "Display All Commodities" button, you will be provided with the entire list of commodities, regardless of your request. By clicking the "Return/Done" button, you will exit this page and return to your form. 

8 Adding Commodity Codes Continued:
If you have already added a specific commodity to your list and you select it again, a note will pop up to say, “this commodity is already selected.” Remember, you can always add or delete commodities at any time. It’s time to click “submit” at the bottom of the page. It will ask you to verify your information. If the information is correct, click “Submit” at the bottom, if you still want to make changes, click “return.”

9 After you click the “submit” button, you will get the following message:
You will be receiving an with your system generated Enrollment Number and Password. This will confirm your enrollment, so please keep this information in a safe place. If you do not receive an with your system generated Enrollment Number and Password please contact the Vendor Information Center (VIC) at

10 Within a very short time you will then receive the following email:
Thank you for enrolling with Miami-Dade County!  Enrollment functions as a "mailing list" that allows us to send you announcements via for possible business that coincides with the products and services your company provides. Please see note below regarding registration, which is the next step in the process. If you would like to change any of your Enrollment information, you must use the enrollment number and password below and log onto:     Your enrollment number is: XXXXX     Your password is: XXXXXXX

11 IMPORTANT NOTE: Registration is a separate process that must be completed prior to a contract being awarded to you. Registration requires the submittal of several documents, including notarized affidavits. While Enrollment only allows you to be notified of bid opportunities, Registration is required prior to a contract being awarded, so that Miami Dade County has the ability to pay you for the goods or services you provide. So, that’s a good thing! We’ll talk about Registration in the following section.

12 4. Vendor Registration http://www. miamidade
What is Vendor Registration? Vendor Registration is the next step in doing business with Miami Dade County and the most important step if you want to be awarded a contract and get paid after winning a contract with the County. It also adds your company name to computerized listings of vendors available to the Procurement Management staff and other County departments when they are looking to acquire quotes under $10,000.

13 Vendor Registration Continued:
The Vendor Registration package consists 26 pages in the following four sections: Section 1. General Business Information (Page 1-4) Section 2. Vendor Affidavits Form (Requires Notarized Signatures) (Page 5-8) Section 3. Vendor Commodity Code Checklist (Page 9-23) Section 4. Vendor Documents and Additional Forms (Pages 24-25)

14 Vendor Registration Continued:
Completed Vendor Registration Packages can be mailed or hand delivered to: MIAMI-DADE COUNTY VENDOR SERVICES SECTION 111 NW 1st Street Suite 1300 Miami, FL 33128 (305)

15 Vendor Registration Continued:
Let’s take a look at the application by Section and page. Page 1. At the top right it asks for your Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) Chances are you will not have a U.S. FEIN Number. In that case, you should submit the appropriate W-8 form and the County Finance Department will provide you with a number (created by Finance) that identifies you as a foreign firm. There are several W-8 forms to choose from. Each one is a Certificate of Foreign Status of for United States Tax Withholding and is used by foreign persons (including corporations) to certify their non-U.S. status.

16 Vendor Registration Continued:
The forms establish that one is a non-resident or a foreign Corporation to avoid or reduce tax withholding from a U.S. source of income, such as sale of products to the U.S. These forms and the instructions for completing them are found online or can be obtained by calling the County Finance Department for help in determining, obtaining and completing the appropriate form for your company. Call the Finance office at The selection of the correct form will depend on the type of business/relationship your company will have with the US.

17 Vendor Registration Continued:
Below are the links to the IRS site with the W-8 instructions for each form. These are also found in the printed Guide book. - W-8 - W-8BEN - W-8CE - W-8EXP - W-8ECI - W-8IMY

18 Vendor Registration Continued:
Directly under the FEIN Number they ask for your NAICS Code. NAICS stands for North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). There are hundreds of codes for every industry and for every facet of an industry. You can search key words for a specific code at or you can enter the following high level codes: Textiles (Except Apparel) Uniforms and Apparel The balance of page 1 is general information regarding your address.

19 Vendor Registration Continued:
Page 2. This page asks about your contact information, type of business organization and years in business. When entering the firm’s telephone and address, do not put a general phone number and/or address. Make sure it goes to a key person in the firm and that it will be accessible if that key person is no longer at the company. Many times companies put a general phone number and address on a form, and when that person changes jobs the company never receives another call or from the County.

20 Vendor Registration Continued:
Page 3. This page asks for the type of business, specifically what commodity or service you can provide. It also explains the County conflict of interest ordinance and asks if any owner, principle or family members are County employees. To the right of 9a and 9b, select no and go to the next page. If you need to answer yes, you will need to follow the instructions in 9.

21 Vendor Registration Continued:
Page 4. This page asks you to affirm that the information in pages 1-3 are true and correct. Make sure that someone who is authorized to sign contracts for the company is the one who signs this page. Page 5. Again, as on page 1 at the top right it asks for your Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN). Directly under the FEIN Number they ask for your NAICS Code. This page has to do with the ownership of the business, the legal names, titles and % of ownership.

22 Vendor Registration Continued:
Page 6. and Page 7. The top section of this page is interested in the employees of the company, their race, national origin, gender and their employee benefits. Section 3. through Section 10 explains several County Ordinances that all vendors must comply with, even if they are a foreign company. While this seems odd, the County Attorney’s Office has ruled that when these affidavits were established, the County did not differentiate between companies that were in the United States or located somewhere else.

23 Vendor Registration Continued:
Page 8. This page requires you to affirm that the information in pages 6 and 7 are true and correct. Again, make sure that someone who is authorized to sign contracts for the company is the one who signs this page. Page 9-15. These pages ask you to select the commodities and services that your firm is interested in providing to the County. Pay particular attention to page 11, section 5 entitled, Apparel, Uniforms, Gloves, Shoes, Etc. and page 16, section 34, entitled, Leather Goods, Luggage, Purses, Fabric, Notions and Accessories.

24 Vendor Registration Continued:
Page 17. This is a checklist of documents that need to be submitted as part of the Vendor registration package. Again, as on page 1 and 5 at the top right you are asked for your Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN). Directly under the FEIN Number you are asked for your NAICS Code. Except for the W-8, these documents will probably not apply to your company.

25 Vendor Registration Continued:
Page This is a notice concerning the use of Social Security numbers and/or FEIN numbers in order to have a “County Vendor Number.” Remember, in the case of a non-US company case, after you submit the W-8 form, the County Finance Department will provide you with a number (created by Finance) that identifies you as a foreign firm and that will serve as your County Vendor Number. NOTE: Please refer to the printed Guide book for a copy of the Vendor Registration Form.

26 5. BidSync (Select “Free Registration) Now that you have enrolled as a vendor and you’ve completed the Vendor Registration Application, it’s time to register with BidSync. Note: You can actually register with BidSync before you complete the Vendor Registration Application, whichever you want to do first.

27 BidSync Continued: Miami-Dade County is now issuing all competitive solicitations for goods and services issued by the Procurement Management Division of the Internal Services Department, through the BidSync Electronic Bidding System. You will be able to view and submit your bid/proposal responses electronically through the BidSync system. Paper proposals will not be accepted for solicitations issued/advertised after January 21, 2014.

28 BidSync Continued: If you have not already done so, register with BidSync by choosing the “Please Register with BidSync” option from Miami-Dade County website you prefer, you can also register directly through by choosing the “Free Registration” option on their website. The use of the BidSync System for Miami-Dade-County solicitations does not require your firm to participate in any of the BidSync subscription services or options. Miami-Dade County does not endorse BidSync subscription services besides the FREE service provided by BidSync for Miami-Dade County business.

29 BidSync Continued: When you click on the link to register with BidSync you will get this message… You are now leaving the official website of Miami-Dade County government. Please be aware that when you exit this site, you are no longer protected by our privacy or security policies. Miami-Dade County is not responsible for the content provided on linked sites. The provision of links to these external sites does not constitute an endorsement.

30 BidSync Continued: Please click 'OK' to be sent to the new site, or Click 'Cancel' to go back. Once you are on BidSync’s webpage a form will appear asking for your contact information. It will also ask you to create a user name and a password. The password needs to be at least 8 characters long and have at least one letter and one number in it. This user name and password is very important for future use of this website…write it down and keep it in a safe place. Complete step #2 and then click “next step.”

31 BidSync Continued: The next page will ask what your primary industry is from a drop down list. Select “Clothing, Textiles.” It will also ask for keywords that describe what you can provide. Enter words such as; apparel, uniforms, fabric, etc. and click the tab button. When you do that it will automatically suggest additional keywords that you may or may not want to use. It will then ask where you do business. Feel free to select any of the choices. You can then click “next step” to move forward or “previous step” if you want to go back and make any changes.

32 BidSync Continued: The next page will give you a selection of commodity codes based on the keywords you selected on the previous page. It will also give you the option to look at other codes that companies like yours have selected. Select as many as you want. You can then click “next step” to move forward or “previous step” if you want to go back and make any changes.

33 You will then get the following message on the screen:
BidSync Continued: You will then get the following message on the screen: Thank you for registering with BidSync! You can now log in and view bid information. Please allow one business day for us to review and confirm your registration. You will have “read only” access and will not be able to place offer, ask questions, etc., until we have confirmed your account. If you need immediate assistance and would like to have your account confirmed immediately, please contact Bidsync Support at Thank you for joining and we hope you enjoy your experience with BidSync!

34 BidSync Continued: Within a very short time you will get the following message: Welcome to BidSync! Your FREE account is now active. Please go to and login using the username and password you created. You will need to accept the terms and conditions and review your "Account Profile Setup". This should only take a few minutes. IMPORTANT: Please review the following sections of the Account Profile Setup. Pay extra attention to the Classification section to ensure that you receive all relevant bid notifications:     •    Regions (areas in which you do business)     •    Classifications (codes that describe your products and/or services)     •    Notification Types (how you would like to be notified of bid opportunities, fax/ )     •    Agency Types (the type of agencies you are most interested in doing business with) Your username is:     _____________ If you cannot remember your password, please click on the following link:

35 BidSync Continued: All of the information that you submitted during registration including your username and password can be edited under the "Tools" tab in your account. You must be logged in to view this tab. If you need assistance with your account or have questions about the functionality of our system, please contact Vendor Support at toll free, or locally, Monday through Friday during normal business hours. Cordially, Vendor Support BIDSYNC Congratulations…your Company is now registered with BidSync

36 6. Procurement Processes
The Procurement Management Services Division uses a variety of competitive methods to acquire goods and services for the County. They work closely with user departments to get what they need at the best value. Here are some of the key methods they use to acquire goods and services for the County.

37 The Procurement Process Continued:
Small Purchase Orders Purchases of less than $25, are considered small purchase orders and these purchases may be made without a formal bidding process by the user department directly with the vendor. This is another excellent reason to complete the Vendor Registration package. When a department has a need for goods and/or services in an amount less than $25,000 they will go to the registered vendors list and select a minimum of three vendors who can supply them with the item(s) and only contact them for quotes. The department will then issue a purchase order directly without the need to contact the Procurement Management Division staff.

38 The Procurement Process Continued:
Invitation to Bid (ITB) The standard method Miami-Dade County uses to acquire goods or services is the Invitation to Bid (ITB) process. Here, they look for the lowest price on specified goods and services. Price is the primary basis for award.   Below is a brief description of a typical Invitation to Bid process: The user department has a need for goods and/or services and notifies the Procurement Division. The Procurement Division drafts the bid for publication and sets a bid opening date A “cone of silence” goes into effect when the bid is advertised and all communication regarding the bid solicitation must now be in writing only until an award recommendation is made. Bids are reviewed and evaluated and an award recommendation is made Award notifications of $250,000 or more are sent in the mail. Award notifications of less than $250,000 are posted on the County website.

39 The Procurement Process Continued:
Important: General Terms and Conditions are a part of each bid document and you should familiarize yourself with them. To review the standard terms and conditions, click on the following link: NOTE: Alternate or Equivalent Bids Whenever the specifications of an article or material are defined by trade name, brand name, or model and catalog number, the term “or equal,” if not written, is implied. Any such reference to a particular manufacturer’s product is for the purpose of item identification and to establish standards of performance, quality and features. Bids on equivalent items are invited. Alternate bids may be submitted and, if they meet and/or exceed the specifications or scope of work in the bid document, shall be given equal consideration during the evaluation process.

40 The Procurement Process Continued:
Request for Proposals (RFP) The RFP process may be used when the scope of work cannot be completely defined by the County. Contract award for Request for Proposals and Request for Qualifications is not based solely upon price. Other factors, such as: Qualifications and experience of principals and staff; Methodology and management approach; Understanding of the project and the County's objective; Technical superiority; Financial stability; Experience and history of the firm, among others, are taken into consideration.

41 The Procurement Process Continued:
Request for Qualifications (RFQ) A Request for Qualifications (RFQ) process may be used to determine the qualifications from proposers when the County cannot or has not completely established the scope of services. An RFQ may be used, for example, when creating a pool of qualified vendors to be used on a rotational basis, or in a two-step competitive basis where the scope of services is incomplete and only those firms selected in the qualification phase compete when a particular work order is established.

42 The Procurement Process Continued:
Here is a brief description of the Request for Proposals/Qualifications (RFP/RFQ) process. 1. The User Department Requests RFP/RFQ. 2. Procurement Management prepares solicitations in conjunction with user department. 3.RFP/RFQ is advertised. 4.Procurement Management holds pre-proposal conference. 5.Proposals are received and evaluated 6.Negotiations take place. 7. Award Recommendation Issued

43 The Procurement Process Continued:
Prepare your solicitation with great care. Solicitation requirements vary from contract to contract. Make sure all required information is included. A contract awarded on erroneous information may result in financial loss or other difficulties for your business, so it’s important you pay attention to every detail and make sure you can meet all of the deliverables listed in the document.  Thoroughly understand the stipulations regarding purchase, delivery of goods and payments. You should clearly define the items and services you can provide, your delivery schedule, and your best price.

44 The Procurement Process Continued:
It’s also very important to keep track of your proposal after you submit it. Once all proposals have been submitted the process of evaluation will begin and you may be contacted for a pre-award questionnaire and a chance for you to demonstrate that you can deliver the items in your proposal. Once the contract has been awarded the awarded vendor and contract price become public information. Whether or not you win the bid, keeping a record of this information is vital as you move forward and submit future proposals. The biggest lesson is to stay proactive: Research the needs and show that you can provide the best solution. Making sure you bid wisely will increase your chances of winning contracts.

45 Checklist for Submitting a Successful Bid
_____ Did you type all entries or make them in ink only? _____ Did you read the bid thoroughly before you starting to write? _____ Did you include transportation costs in you bid price? _____ Did you bid on all items if required? _____ Did you bid an alternate item that is not equal or better? _____ Did you double check all mathematical calculations? _____ Did you attend any mandatory pre-bid or walk-thru? _____ Did you provide all necessary contact information?

46 Checklist for Submitting a Successful Bid Continued:
_____ Did you attach all required forms? _____ Did you submit the requested number of copies? _____ Did you provide references if requested? _____ Did you include any signed addendums if addenda was issued? _____ Will your bid arrive before the time and date required? _____ Will your bid arrive at the right location? _____ Did a person who is authorized sign the bid?

47 7. Getting Paid
Vendor Payments Miami-Dade County now offers a payment option that will expedite County payments to your organization via Automated Clearing House transfers directly to your bank account, instead of the issuance and mailing of a County check. The new Vendor Payment Inquiry application provides vendors and County departments alike access to invoice check and payment information literally at your fingertips. This reduces the need for time consuming phone calls, and expediting invoice follow-ups. You can sign up for this payment option by filling out an Automated Clearing House (ACH) Authorization Agreement by following the link to the website above and clicking on “Direct Deposit.”

48 Getting Paid Continued:
Vendor Inquiry Regarding Payment Status The Vendor Payment Inquiry page is designed to present invoice and payment information to Miami-Dade County vendors to assist in expediting payment inquiry resolution. Invoice and check payment information is available on this page; the day payment is due, the amount paid, any deductions taken, date check was processed or cleared by the bank, and whether payment was made by check or direct deposit are some of the fields of information that are presented.

49 Getting Paid Continued:
The Vendor Payment Inquiry pages are provided and maintained by the County Finance Department. Any questions or concerns about the application should be addressed by calling the Finance Department at After you have registered as a vendor and the Finance Department has assigned a FEIN number to your company, follow the link above and select “Vendor Payment Inquiry.”

50 Getting Paid Continued:
You will receive the following message: Welcome to the Vendor Payment Inquiry Website To start - In the Login box on your left, please enter your Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) assigned by the Federal Government or Social Security Number (SSN) if you do not have an FEIN number, remember Finance will assign you a number. Press enter or click login. For your protection, this number will not show up again once you have typed it in and it is validated by the system. Of course the County still can issue paper checks if you prefer, however this is a much faster method of getting paid promptly…it’s your choice.

51 8. Marketing Your Contract
Marketing any product or service requires an understanding of who the buyers are; why they need the item(s), what they want to buy, where and how they want it shipped and when they need to receive it.  Marketing to a government is the same.  Miami Dade County, like all governmental purchasing is reactive rather than proactive.  Everything they buy is in response to a need which is determined by the user departments, not the Procurement Department.

52 Marketing Your Contract Continued:
WHO There are usually several players involved in the buying process.  This will usually include several individuals in addition to the Contracting Officer. There are Procurement Liaisons in every user department. Additionally if you are lucky enough to win a Miami Dade County contract the County has a User Access Program (UAP) that allows 110 other governmental entities, quasi-governmental and not-for profits to purchase from their vendors at the County awarded price, terms and conditions. Check to see if the solicitation you are bidding on has a UAP clause in it.

53 Marketing Your Contract Continued:
The User Access Program (UAP) allows for a two percent (2%) discount on prices, collected through a deduction on your vendor invoices. The UAP discount, on these contracts, applies to purchases by County departments; other governmental, quasi-governmental and not-for-profit entities accessing County-issued contracts. While giving an additional 2% discount may seem a hardship, keep in mind the potential of providing goods and/or services to 110 additional governmental entities without the need to bid on each of their contracts can mean a huge profit for your business.

54 Marketing Your Contract Continued:
WHAT They buy anything from fire trucks to underwear.  In addition to products, they also buy services. The key component in your offering is to ensure you have a solution that fits the needs and budget.

55 Marketing Your Contract Continued:
WHERE Although the Procurement office is the hub of the centralized purchasing function, much of what happens is at the user department level.  Major and minor purchases take place at various locations around the county.  Goods and/or services are never delivered to the Procurement Department and according to your purchase order may have several delivery locations. Make sure you know where to deliver your items.

56 Marketing Your Contract Continued:
WHEN When goods and/or services need to be delivered can be the most important factor in deciding which vendor is awarded to contract. Be realistic in your delivery dates. Failure to deliver when promised will reflect on every decision to award to your company in the future and will penalize you in your late delivery of a current award.

57 Marketing Your Contract Continued:
HOW If you don’t have a website, get one. If you do have a website, keep it current. Post your award sheet prices on your website and consider sending blasts to the 110 governmental entities that are able to access your contract through the UAP. Each entity will issue it’s own purchase order when they want to access the prices, terms and conditions of your County contract. If you can attend the FREE classes that are offered by Miami Dade County, you should take advantage of them. Occasionally Miami Dade County sponsors trade shows that you can take part in if you are in the area.

58 9. Frequently Asked Questions
Q - Who can sell goods or services to Miami Dade County? A - Any vendor who sells goods and/or services can sell to Miami Dade County. The County purchases a wide variety of goods and/or services in nearly every category specified in the commodity code listing. Q - Does my company need to register as a vendor? A – Vendors must register in order to receive payment from Miami Dade County. In addition, you will be placed in additional areas that allow using departments to call upon you for small purchase orders. Registering does NOT create a contract or guarantee that the County will buy from you.

59 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - After I have registered my company, how long does it take before my company will be in the County system? A – It usually takes one business day. Q - How can I correct or update my company information once I have registered? A – It is your responsibility to keep your vendor information current. Once you are registered, you may correct/update company information by contacting the Vendor Assistance Unit of the Procurement Management Division at (305)

60 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - How can I market my business to the County? A - Procurement specialists are constantly seeking new reliable sources for products and services. Determine the needs of the County based on previous purchases and communicate how you could meet those needs or solve their problems in advance for the next bidding cycle. This information is public record and can be requested in writing to the Specialist in charge of your specific contract or commodity interest. Additionally, the County has a User Access Program (UAP) that allows all other governmental entities to access awarded contracts and pricing. Make sure you obtain a list of key contacts in these other entities and let them know you were awarded a Miami Dade contract and your company is available to provide the same goods and/or services to their government as well.

61 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - When is an Invitation to Bid (ITB) most likely to be used? A – An ITB is used to select a supplier when the price will be the basis of the award. The County will award the contract(s) to the lowest responsible, responsive bidder. Generally speaking, this means a bidder who: • Meets all the specifications • Has the capacity and is qualified to perform the contract • Agrees to comply with the terms and conditions of the ITB • Completes and provides all applicable pricing information requested in the ITB • Provides an authorized signature on the Proposal Form • Submits the bid as instructed, by the due date and time specified • Submits any and all information or documents required in the ITB • Offers the lowest price

62 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - Who evaluates an Invitation to Bid (ITB)? A – Bids are evaluated by the user department(s), who submits a recommendation to the Purchasing Division. The bid recommendation is reviewed thoroughly by the Purchasing Division. The recommendation is made to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder. “Responsive” means the supplier conforms in all material respects to the requirements set forth in the bid document. “Responsible” refers to the ability to perform as specified.

63 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - What are some of the reasons a vendor may be deemed non-responsive or non-responsible A – The reasons may include: a. Previous vendor performance problems as documented in a vendor performance file b. Failure to meet contractual obligations after an award has been made c. Failure to conform to required delivery, specifications, or detailed requirements d. Submission of a bid or offer in such a manner that would prevent the establishment or determination of a firm bid price. Such as, refusing to hold firm prices or submitting bid prices subject to change due to manufacturer increases/decreases, market conditions, or minimum quantity requirements e. Submission of a bid that is contingent upon receiving the award of another bid f. Failure to provide a bid surety or meet insurance requirements when specifically required in the bid g. Submission of solicitation exceptions when not acceptable to the County based on its own best interest. h. A record of financial difficulty and/or business instability i. Criminal sanctions, civil sanctions

64 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - When is a Request For Proposal (RFP) or Request For Quotation (RFQ) most likely to be used? A – An RFP or RFQ is used when the County intends to award a contract to a responsible supplier whose proposal is determined to be the most advantageous to the County. When using the RFP/RFQ process, the County may conduct negotiations or allow proposal modifications to obtain the best value. Generally speaking, this means: • When qualifications, performance levels, expertise, quality of service or product performance are more important than the cost.

65 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - Who evaluates a Request For Proposal (RFP) and/or Request For Qualification (RFQ)? A – Proposals are evaluated by an evaluation team. The proposals are scored based on the criteria set forth in the proposal. The committee may create a short list from proposals received, based on the criteria. The top firms may be interviewed and the price, terms, or the scope of work may be negotiated with the highest scoring firm. Once the firm has been selected, the user department submits a recommendation to the Purchasing Division, who in turn presents it to the Board of County Commissioners for its approval or rejection

66 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - Can I review previous contracts or bids/proposals that have been submitted to the County? A - This information is public record and can be requested in writing from the Specialist in charge of your specific contract or commodity interest. Q - What if I discover a mistake in my bid or a problem with my County contract? A - Call and discuss the mistake or problem with the procurement specialist assigned to the purchase or contract. Often, the procurement specialist can find a solution if the mistake or problem is discovered in time

67 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - Can I charge separately for delivery costs? A – It is highly unusual for the County to pay freight charges separately. Shipping charges, if applicable, must be included (built into) in the unit price of the item(s) bid. All purchases are made F.O.B. destination, unless otherwise specified. The County’s title to goods occurs upon satisfactory delivery and acceptance at the delivery point shown on the purchase order. All shipments to the County must be made to the locations designated on the purchase order. Deliveries may be required to be made to different departments in various parts of the County. Make sure to check the purchase order for that information and put the purchase order number on each shipping ticket.

68 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - What if I can’t meet the delivery dates I stated in the bid proposal? A - Vendors should always state, on the bid form, the number of calendar days required before delivery of a product can be made, or they should indicate the specific date upon which delivery will be made. The time required for delivery may be one of the most important considerations in determining who shall be awarded the bid. Successful bidders will be expected to deliver the materials and/or services they are providing within the specified time. If delivery dates cannot be met, the Department of Procurement must be notified immediately. The Department of Procurement will decide, after notification of late delivery, what action should be taken.

69 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q – Do I have to stick to the terms and conditions in the bid? A –The bid documents contain the specifications for the commodity or service being purchased and the terms and conditions governing the bid. The bid form will become the actual contract, if it is awarded to you. That is why an authorized representative from your company must be the one signing the bid, as it is a legally binding contract. Submitting a bid in response to a solicitation obligates you to honor your bid price and to meet County terms and conditions for the full term of the contract.

70 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - How soon will I be paid for products and services I sell to the County? A – If the invoice you submit is complete and provides all of the information needed you should be paid in within 30 days after the using department has received and accepted your goods and/or services. In order to receive prompt payment: • Send your invoice to the using department’s “bill to” address as stated in your purchase order • Always put the purchase order (PO) number on your invoice. • Check your invoice for accuracy and conformance with the price and other terms of your contract • Ask about partial deliveries prior to making one. Some departments do not accept partial deliveries. • Offer prompt payment discounts. • Accept the County’s Automated Clearing House (ACH) program to expedite payments directly to your bank.

71 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - What should I do if I do not receive payment on my invoice? A – On the County Finance Department website, click on The Vendor Payment Inquiry page which should tell you the status of your invoice and payment. If you still have questions or concerns about the payment call the County Finance Department at

72 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - Are pre-bid/proposal conferences mandatory? A – Occasionally they are mandatory. Please read the specific solicitation for that information. The nature of some bids and proposals require a pre-bid or pre-proposal conference to be held. Pre-bid and pre-proposal conferences are held in order to clarify specifications, answer vendor questions regarding the spe­cific bid or proposal, or to allow the vendor to perform an on-site review and inspection. Most pre-bids and pre-proposals are voluntary. Any changes to the original bid or proposal will be made in writing in the form of an addendum and will be mailed, ed, and/ or faxed to all vendors who originally received or have requested the solicitation. All questions and information requests must be directed to the appropriate Purchasing Specialist listed in the bid document to insure that all vendors have the same information. Addenda will also be posted on the County’s website. It is the vendor’s responsibility to obtain any and all addenda prior to submitting a bid or proposal. If the pre-bid is mandatory, your company must send a representative to the meeting in order to qualify to participate in the bidding process of that specific solicitation.

73 Frequently Asked Questions Continued:
Q - Can County staff accept gratuities? A – Unlike the private sector, the public sector has a much stricter code of conduct and ethical behavior rules and regulations. It is the policy of the Purchasing Division to refuse any gift from vendors, regardless of the monetary value of the item. Any gift received by mail will be returned to the sender. If returning the item will result in a significant charge, the item will be donated to a charitable organization.

74 Myths Myth - that the company has to be located in the U.S
Miami Dade County is always looking for qualified new vendors to compete for County business. There is no “Buy America” requirement and companies all over the world are encouraged to offer their services to the County. Best value to the County is what they are looking for, first and foremost. Myth - that the company must be a big company Miami Dade County currently has approximately 70 annual contracts in place for uniforms, apparel and textiles, such as sheets, blankets, towels and other related items. These have an estimated value of $45,000,000. The largest contract value is $12,900,000 and the smallest is valued at $7,600. With such wide ranges in mind, there is a huge opportunity for bidders of all sizes to meet the financial, technical and production capabilities necessary to perform these contracts, on a case by case basis.

75 Myth - that all orders are huge
Myths Continued: Myth - that all orders are huge Purchases of less than $25, may be made without a formal bidding process by the user department, directly with the vendor. These purchases are called “Small Purchases Orders” and the County spends millions of dollars through this process.

76 Myths Continued: Myth - that it’s difficult to get paid
Miami-Dade County now offers a payment option that will expedite County payments to your organization via Automated Clearing House transfers directly to your bank account, instead of the issuance and mailing of a County check. Myth - that there is no way to know what the previous contract price was Having this information is the key to offering a fair and reasonable price to the County. This information is public record and can be requested in writing from the Specialist in charge of your specific contract or commodity interest. Myth -that no one will help a new vendor through the process There is help available every step of the way with all aspects of the bidding process. This includes, but is not limited to vendor enrollment, vendor registration, bid preparation and getting paid. Whatever area help is needed, help is available.

77 10. Getting Help Vendor Enrollment Help
If You Need Assistance Please Contact The Vendor Assistance Unit at (305) If you are no longer interested in receiving future notifications about bid opportunities, send an and type 'Unsubscribe' in the subject line.  Your address will be removed from the distribution list.  Vendor Application Help

78 Getting Help Continued:
BidSync Help If you need additional assistance regarding the BidSync registration and training process as a Miami-Dade County vendor, please contact the BidSync support team at , or Should you have any questions or require additional information regarding BidSync, please contact Miami Dade County staff member, Adil Khan at or Janice Bandhu at

79 Getting Help Continued:
W-8 Help Contact the County Finance Department at Bid Preparation Help 2014 Free Vendor Workshops 111 N.W. 1st Street, Miami, Florida - Stephen P. Clark Center 18th Floor, Conference Room :00 a.m.—12:00 noon Contact us to register (305) Workshop Dates:  August 12  November 11

80 Getting Help Continued:
Getting Paid Help Contact the County Finance Department at or

81 Consulting Help Jill Klaskin Press, President
JKP Consulting Group, Inc. Phone: Fax: Cell:

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