A Collaboration Request is used by NC eProcurement buyers to work with multiple vendors on the best pricing for goods and services. Vendors will receive a notification that they have been sent a collaboration request and can then choose to respond with a quote, called a collaboration proposal, for the requested items. After the collaboration request has been closed, the buyer can then review all received responses and work with the vendor that sent in the best proposal for the goods and/or services.
While all vendors registered to receive purchase orders in the electronic Vendor Portal can receive notification of a Collaboration Request via email, responding with pricing to the request requires a free Ariba Network account. For more information on creating an Ariba Network account, see Accessing the Ariba Network.
For more detailed step-by-step information regarding this topic in a printable format, see the following job aid.
Vendors can find all requests for collaboration stored in their Ariba Network account once they log in. Email notifications will be sent to vendors for each new collaboration request.
To respond to a collaboration request, vendors will click on the 'Request #' for a specific request and then use the 'Respond' drop-down to choose 'Respond with Proposal.' From there, vendors can edit line items to update the 'Price' field for the goods or services being requested by checking the box on the left side for the line, then using the 'Actions' drop-down to 'Edit Details.'
Note: North Carolina State Agencies and some community colleges require that the fields for a service line item be filled out differently, indicating that requirement by setting the ‘UOM’ to ‘dollar’ when creating the request. To respond to a service line for these entities:
1. Update the ‘Qty’ field to the total dollar amount for the service based on the ‘Full Description.’
2. Change the ‘Price’ field to $1.
3. The ‘Amount’ field will update with the new total.
While vendors can always contact the buyer using external methods if they have questions, there are also several communication methods within the Collaboration Request tool. Use the 'Send Message' link in the upper right of the individual Collaboration Request page to send a message related to the collaboration, or leave comments while editing the line items to update pricing.
After a vendor has sent their proposal to the buyer, revisions to pricing or other details are able to be made as long as the revised proposal is submitted before the collaboration request deadline.
Note: Revisions to a Collaboration Request, including withdrawing or declining the request, can be made up until the buyer accepts the proposed pricing or closes the request entirely. Changes made after the request deadline set by the buyer may be rejected.