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Author archives: Josh

Summer Internships 2016

Last update on March 2, 2017.

SupplierSelect Ltd is a UK registered software company  in with offices in London and Sydney. We are running a series of product development sprints in July and August 2014. To help us with these projects we hope to recruit some smart cookies for few weeks this summer.

Is it really an Internship?

We associate the term intership with bad pay, unstimulating work and vague notions of helping a student's future career. On that basis, no, it probably isn't an internship.

What work is involved?

We are migrating a Java/J2EE codebase away from being single monolithic application towards ...

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Ensuring Deliverability of RFP Notification Emails

Last update on March 18, 2016.

SupplierSelect has changed the Project's From Email Address field. It is now the Reply To address. This means that email notifications of RFP activity will always come from notifications@supplierselect.com. If a user replies to the message notification, then the reply will go to the Reply To address (if defined) for that Project.

We regret having to make this change, but feel it is essential in order to ensure that our emails are not blocked by firewalls and spam filters.

Background

SupplierSelect sends thousands of automated email per day: RFP event notifications, password reminders, registration links and messages ...

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Notification Email Backlog

Last update on Feb. 1, 2015.

SupplierSelect's servers are patched and updated for non-critical fixes overnight on a Saturday night / Sunday morning GMT.

During the course of today's (1st Feb) patch-restart procedure we became aware that a number of email notifications had been stuck in the outbound notification queue for one server. When we restarted the server this queue was re-set, and the notifications were sent.

This has resulted in stale notifications being sent by the system. These notifications should have been sent between Wednesday 28th and Friday 30th January 2015.

The reason for the original blockage has been found and a fix applied ...

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Domain Experts for RFP Evaluation

Last update on July 13, 2014.

Larger RFP projects often feature a team of evaluators working together on the analysis of vendors' responses. Work will generally be divided according to the specific skills and knowledge of each evaluator.

For example, an IT RFP might contain the following sections, allocated to the users indicated:

SectionEvaluator
1. Company Financial Strength Bob
2. Product Functionality Alice
3. Deployment & Integration Fabricio
4. Support Options Fabricio
5. Pricing Bob

Alice, an IT consultant, is an expert on the functional characteristics of this product category. So she is the ideal candidate to assess vendors in this section of the RFP.

But ...

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Maintenance Window - Saturday May 10th

Last update on May 10, 2014.

Upgrades to server hardware will be performed between 22.00 - 24.00 UTC on Saturday May 10th.

The following servers will be affected

  • hosted.supplierselect.com
  • xantive.supplierselect.com
  • rfp.t2rl.net
  • rfp.ccg-catalyst.com
  • aspac.supplierselect.com
  • demo.supplierselect.com

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OpenSSL Security Vulnerability

Last update on April 9, 2014.

News emerged yesterday of a security vulnerability that affected millions of internet websites.

http://arstechnica.com/security/2014/04/critical-crypto-bug-in-openssl-opens-two-thirds-of-the-web-to-eavesdropping/

A fix has been published. The fix has been applied to SupplierSelect servers and relevant TLS certificates have been regenerated. These changes required some server reconfiguration and DNS records have been updated.

It is possible that some browsers will have cached old DNS records and will not be able find SupplierSelect. If so, the fix is to restart the browser.

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Server Maintenance 5th April 2014

Last update on April 5, 2014.

Database maintenance is being performed on servers hosted.supplierselect.com and xantive.supplierselect.com on 5th April 2014. There will be a 30 minute maintenance window between 15:30 and 16:00 UTC

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RFP objectivity a myth? Who cares? Concensus is what counts

Last update on March 21, 2014.

RFPs are supposed to be about transparency, fairness and objectivity. These values are especially important in the following cases:

  1. Public Accountability. Government or other public sector organizations must be able to demonstrate that public money is being is being well spent. If the mayor's brother in law wins a bridge building contract, the mayor needs huge stack of RFP documents to bog down opponents until the next electoral cycle.
  2. Job Security. When responsibility for a big decision lands on someone's desk, the career risks are daunting. A bureaucratic, turgid and mind numbingly dull RFP can be flourished as ...

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Transparent eTendering - Publishing Criteria Weightings

Last update on March 14, 2014.

SupplierSelect helps buyers ("contracting authorities") to comply with procurement regulations by providing a number of project settings which change the behaviour of the RFP. Many of these are driven by the European Union's directives on public sector contracting. We've now added a new setting - "Expose Weightings to Respondents".

SupplierSelect enables buyers to define a set of evaluation criteria, structure these into sections and sub-sections, and then assign weightings to any level of the resulting criteria questionnaire. Previously, it was possible for buyers using SupplierSelect to show criteria weightings to respondents by downloading the weightings into a spreadsheet, and ...

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eSourcing software in Public Sector Tendering

Last update on March 14, 2014.

This describes some of the ways in which web based software can help public sector organisations comply with common regulations. This article draws upon our experience of working with public sector organisations in Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom to provide some ideas for how to use eSourcing and eRFX software in public sector tenders.

Background

Public sector organisations face unusual challenges when evaluating and selecting a vendor for a major contract. By definition, the number of "stakeholders" in a public sector tender is vast - potentially all taxpayers can claim to be an interested party. All these stakeholders want ...

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