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An initiative of the Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab

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Are Procurement Thresholds Slowing You Down?

Quick Read: Are Procurement Thresholds Slowing You Down?

In most governments, different purchasing rules apply depending on the dollar value of the purchase. Often, more stringent procedures apply to large-dollar purchases compared to smaller ones, and purchasing thresholds help government staff understand which rules apply. But these thresholds do more than set the rules for how you make your purchase; they can also be a major factor in your procurement cycle times and process efficiency. In this quick read, you’ll learn how to evaluate whether your purchasing threshold is right for your government, including strategies for setting your purchasing threshold to maximize efficiency, while also considering whether your thresholds are in line with those of your peers. Finally, if you do decide to adjust your threshold, you’ll find best practices for making your case to your governing authority.