While the procurement profession continues to struggle to do more with less, save dollars, and even find new ways to bring in revenue, we know that you will be asked to justify spending time away from the office and money to attend the NIGP Forum. With tight budgets, you will have to find creative ways to convince the powers that be that face to face educational and networking opportunities are the best way for you find more efficient ways to do your job that can implemented immediately, and to stay current on issues your organization faces every day.
Use these suggested tools to obtain approval to attend the Forum and create positive organization ROI resulting from your attendance.
- Focus on what you will bring back to your agency as return on investment (ROI)
- Commit to preparing a report for your supervisor on the things you learned
- Offer to deliver a presentation and Q & A to your colleagues to share what you learned so they benefit from the experience too. Handouts from the presentations will be provided on our website to you as an attendee so presenting on the session you attend should be easy!
- Point out that you can share the session handout material to everyone in your office so more than just one person benefits from attending.
- If you are working toward earning a certification, such as the UPPCC CPPO or CPPB, or need educational credits for recertification, remind your supervisor that the Forum counts for 18 contact hours
- Have a plan ready that shows who will cover you while you are out of the office or how you can stay connected to the office for urgent matters while attending
- Offer to share a room to save on hotel expenses by using the NIGP roommate finder service
- Review the many registration fee options available. Registering early or choosing one of the lower priced registration options will save your entity money.
- If you live within driving distance, offer to commute daily.
- If it is difficult to receive approval to be out of the office during normal business hours, seek approval to attend as a “daily” attendee on Sunday. The benefit to your employer is two-fold: a reduced registration fee and you don’t miss precious office hours.
- Offer to pay some expenses out of pocket, such as meals that are not included in the registration fee, or ancillary expenses associated with travel.
- Carefully review the session topics and identify sessions you need to attend. Tell your supervisor what relevance the topics have to your agency and how your attendance can benefit your organization. Be sure to point out sessions that offer best practices that will provide immediate benefit.
- Review the exhibitor list. Are there products and services your organization needs to learn more about?
While keeping these things in mind, use the tools provided in the toolkit to calculate the return on your agency’s investment for attendance.