Agenda Item No. V. B. 3.

Washburn University Board of Regents





SUBJECT: Request for Proposal - Technology Systems Consulting Services



BACKGROUND:



On March 15, 2004, a Request for Proposal was issued to nine consulting firms capable of providing professional consulting/planning services relative to the University's short- and long-term communication needs. The purpose of the consulting engagement is to determine the most economical and efficient method for coordinating the revision and enhancements of the University's internal and external communication systems (telephone, data, and video). A pre-proposal conference held on March 29, 2004 was attended by six of the firms receiving an RFP.



DESCRIPTION:



On April 16, 2004, the University received proposals from five firms: Elert & Associates; Western Telecommunication Consulting, Inc.; Dietrich Lockard Group; Napa Consulting Group, L.P.; and Swartz Consulting, LLC. (Attached are the cost comparisons for each proposal submitted.)



The proposals were evaluated by an evaluation committee based on the following criteria:



The firm must have a large/diversified client base and have a demonstrated commitment to higher education so the needs and requirements of the University are not unique to the firm.

Have industry specialization (telephone, data networking and cabling) and the accompanying expertise and resources in support thereof.

Qualifications of staff, including consultants to be assigned to the project. University will consider education, position in firm, and years and types of experience (determined from resumes submitted by firm).

The firm's understanding of work to be performed and the approach to be used by the firm to complete the project.

The firm's responsiveness to proposal requirements.

Total cost proposed by the firm for completion of the project, and the length of time proposed by the firm to complete the project.

The firm's policies on notification of changes in key personnel.

After performing reference checks, two firms, Elert & Associates and Western Telecommunications Consulting Group were selected for presentations.



Based on the proposal evaluations, the reference checks, and the formal presentations, the evaluation committee recommends an award be made to Elert & Associates to provide the University with a strategic plan that will review and analyze the current and future requirements for telephone `systems, data/text transmission, and educational video distribution systems in order to minimize duplication of effort and redundancy of cabling requirements. In addition, the firm will perform a complete and thorough staff assessment, especially as it refers to managing, maintaining, and administering telecommunications in a VoIP/ToIP environment.



FINANCIAL IMPLICATIONS:



Total cost of consulting and implementation assistance requested in the amount of $115,424 to be funded from current year revenue over-realization.



RECOMMENDATION:



President Farley recommends the Board of Regents approve awarding the technology systems consulting services contract to Elert & Associates in the amount of $115,424.



________________ ________________________

(date) Jerry B. Farley, President


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