University of California Case StudyCase Study: University of California Office of the President

Strategic Plan using Collaboration and Reverse Auctioning Shows Business Transformation Enabled by Technology


In response to financial pressures, the The University of California, a decentralized network of universities, hospitals, and labs, tasked its Procurement Leadership Council with saving the university $200 million annually until 2017. This project, named P200, seeks to save on procurement costs across the University system by reducing waste, improving transparency, and increasing collaboration. With a FY 2013-14 goal of $120 million, UC System Procurement has surpassed its goal with a total savings of $132M at June 30 year-end.

“The achievements of the P200 program to date have been impressive, and all to the benefit of the university’s core missions of teaching, research and public service,” said Nathan Brostrom, UC executive vice president for business operations and interim chief financial officer. “With continued collaboration among our campuses, labs, medical centers and the Office of the President, we can continue to maximize every university dollar, operate more effectively and improve the quality of our work.” 

Procurement can be disruptive. Find out how Bill Cooper, Chief Procurement Officer, UCOP implemented this ground-breaking cost saving strategy, P200, to reduce procurment costs, permitting the University to focus on its mission of education and research.  

Bill Cooper won the 2014 SuperNova Award in Technology Optimization and Innvoation for his leadership of the P200 project. 

Table of Contents

  • At a Glance
  • The Company
  • The Challenges:
  • Systemwide Sourcing Opportunities Bring Massive Scale
  • Local Procurement Opportunities Delivered $70 Million Annual Savings 
  • Centralization and Localization Successfully Delivered Through Collaboration Technology 
  • Procurement Transformed by Digital Business Purchasing Capabilities
  • The Solution: Approach Applied Five Core Initiatives and Headline Activities 
  • The Board of University of California Views the Program as Groundbreaking 
  • The Impact: Technology Capabilities Increase Market Competition  
  • Domain Expertise Improves Negotiated Discounts 
  • Power of Collective Spend Drives Down Costs 
  • Renegotiating Side Agreements Keeps Contracts Competitive 
  • The Takeaways
  • Lessons Learned: ROI, Best Practices, What to Avoid
  • The Recommendations


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