Three University of Wisconsin System schools, Eau Claire, River Falls and Stout, in coordination with the UW System Administration Office of Procurement, have partnered to create the Northwest Regional Procurement Center for Excellence.

The goal is to harness the power of the system to reduce costs while providing quality services, especially where services are statewide, such as in information technology, human resources, financial services and procurement.

Schools will conduct spending analysis and consolidate efforts while standardizing and streamlining systems and processes.

In creating the center, the institutions evaluated their procurement needs and the challenges and benefits of a center.

The center contributes to the UW System’s Commitment to Operational Reform and Excellence — or CORE — initiatives by creating operational efficiencies. It also supports the UW System’s 2020 Forward commitment, 2020FWD, to operational excellence to vigorously pursue transparent, efficient and effective operational practices.

Brent Tilton, UW System director of procurement, said the center is recognized by UWSA for strategic procurement value rather than routine procurement processing capacity.

The three universities and UWSA Office of Procurement will share ownership of the center, with a regional assistant purchasing director, Todd Pooler, reporting to Tilton.

The assistant director’s position will be funded by UWSA for the first 2½ years, with the universities supporting a minimum of a half-year support of the initial hire. After three years, if the position continues, the schools will be responsible for funding the position.

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