Public Procurement Management Information System(PROMIS)
The global focus is on uniform procurement laws, wide dissemination of procurement
opportunities and transparency. This focus forms a part of the reform program being adopted by
developing countries at present with the assistance of World Bank and other multinational
agencies. Despite ownership of the projects lying with each Government, the projects may be
funded by international development institutions or bilateral aid. The Development Co-operation
Directorate (DAC) held the South Africa and Paris Conventions and has set some criteria to
monitor public procurement.
Consequently, reforms in public procurement have been initiated worldwide in order to increase
accountability and reduce corruption. World Bank financed the first project in Bangladesh called
the “Public Procurement Reform Project”. Central Procurement Technical Unit (CPTU) was
established in 2002 as a permanent unit within the Implementation Monitoring and Evaluation
Division (IMED) of the Ministry of Planning and is responsible for spearhead and conduct the
Public Procurement reforms. Dohatec has since built the first Public Procurement MIS with input
from relevant international agencies.
Dohatec has produced a procurement system that has been designed to effectively disseminate
tender notices to enhance transparency and efficiency. Rules, regulations, standard tender
documents and processes are elaborately laid out. The system is interactive and all government
bids can be placed by respective agencies through convenient interfaces. This product has been
shown to a worldwide audience at the World Bank HQ and its Procurement specialist from the
Country Offices and the Headquarters in December 2005.
Phase 1 was to build a dynamic website for putting up Advertisement Notices from all procuring
entities. The site’s purpose was to act as a reference site for its visitors to access information on
Procurement Rules and Regulations. Local firms attempted to develop this system but it is
thought they could not understand and implement the complexities. Dohatec was invited to build
this system, as a result of their extensive web database development experience.
Phase II was to build a Management Information System MIS) to monitor public procurement.
The OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) Round Table Initiative and Paris
Meeting emerged with the procurement monitoring criteria. The process of procurement has to
be closely monitored against a set of key performance indicators to measure the compliance. The
first set of indicators developed was implemented in to the system in Bangladesh by Dohatec.
Government has since followed up the first PPRP with the PPRPll which carried out
enhancement of the system.
The initial system was developed and deployed in 50 calendar days. The rules, regulations,
standard formats were placed on the website. The workflow describing each activity was
presented graphically to reduce the necessity of referring to the central body for clarifications.
The application came into use throughout Bangladesh. Where there was connectivity,
information was uploaded through the Internet and where there was no connectivity, the
Procuring entities sent the Tender Notices on CD-ROM. The system did not require any training
of personnel on the usage instead it just co-opted all operators to the system instantly. There are
queries for validation in the Application that was incorporated and a virtual fail proof system was
implemented. Dohatec also structured the database carefully so that it could have significant
subsequent use. The system is robust and has been functioning smoothly ever since.
There were doubts about the familiarity with software and prevalence of computers in
government offices throughout Bangladesh. Dohatec appropriately assessed the proficiency level
of the clerical staff in government offices and designed user-friendly forms and built in systems.
The Government Procurement MIS (Management Information System) is for keeping track of
procurement starting from the procurement plan to completion and
helping decision makers by generating a set of key performance indicators on the entire
procurement process. The online system forms a part of the procuring entity's routine activity but
the database created allows the government to monitor progress and performance at all times.
The reports generated reveal efficiencies, compliance, progress, transparency, and information
on utilization against plans. Considerable international legal and administrative expertise was
provided by the World Bank to capture each key performance indicator. The Bangladesh system
has a total of forty-five indicators.
The integrated Government Procurement MIS is able to monitor the performance of government
procurement in Developing Countries. The System measures the procurement performance in
terms of qualitative and quantitative progress. It permits benchmarking the performance of
various procuring entities within the government. A procurement cycle creates a lot of
information with many hierarchical levels carrying out different tasks depending on the
procurement type, value, budget etc. It generates reports on the performance of any procurement
entity at any time. The system is robust, easy to use and maintain.
The Dohatec system has drawn the attention of various Development agencies including the
Asian Development Bank, DFID UK, Japan Bank for International Co-operation. It was
presented to an international audience drawn from the World Bank client states and Bank offices
during the World Bank Learning Week in December 2005 in Washington DC. It has been
acclaimed as a powerful tool to empower governments to improve efficiency, performance and
transparency in public procurement.
The website was awarded a prize by Swiss Interactive Media and Software Association in 2005.
The contract for MIS was given to Dohatec on a single source basis. The nationwide
implementation is also assigned to Dohatec “in consideration of good performance” by the
World Bank. There are enquiries from different government about the system.