Manage Complex Global SOW Projects with Ease with the Chameleon of VMSs | DCR Workforce Blog

Manage Complex Global SOW Projects with Ease with the Chameleon of VMSs

A Statement of Work (SOW) project lays the foundation of the relationship between buyers and sellers, and requires skill, strategy and practicality to be effective as contracts. As SOW contracts get increasingly useful – thanks to the Affordable Care Act and the need for specialized skills in a talent-starved job market – companies are embracing these projects. This requires companies to put a strategy in place to manage the entire Statement of Work lifecycle, starting with the RFP process to milestone compliance and from onboarding to offboarding.

You have to remember that effective SOW management presupposes financial and operational controls for a company to enjoy a great opportunity for savings while having access to important reporting and benchmarking. To put effective processes in place, you need a Vendor Management System (VMS) that’s capable of setting the required processes to help manage a SOW project.

Smart Track is the VMS chameleon

Not only that! Project management becomes complex as SOW projects change, mutate and often are subject to scope creep, so you have to depend on a VMS that is easily configurable to your changing needs. The type of flexibility that Smart Track offers. Smart Track can quickly change as your Statement of Work takes a different turn such as adding a sub-project, adding milestones and increasing the budget. We are the chameleon of VMS providers.

As you look at various VMS providers, don’t forget that the VMS needs to address the various aspects of the Statement of Work contract, and help with managing the SOW project management strategy in all its complex detail such as location-specific compliance, currency and other end user needs. It needs to have customizable architecture and meet the integration requirements easily.

Here are some points to consider:

  • Can the VMS help us decide whether to hire on a project basis or just pay a consultant for a finished product?
  • Can we use the VMS to set terms and conditions, technical references, measurement systems, schedules and milestones, deadlines for the project and its sub-projects as well as performance standards and metrics and deliverables for each stage of the project, to be incorporated into the SOW document? If yes, who carries the responsibility and risk in case of failure to deliver according to the schedule?
  • Does the VMS allow access to analytics and reporting tools that offer visibility into which SOW worker is associated with which project and automatically track them against deadlines and report on their performance in real time? Can the data help to derive key actionable insights, which come in useful for future projects too?
  • Can the VMS tool provide insight into supplier performance, focusing on the quality of talent supplied, compliance standards and overall contribution to and impact on the project?
  • Can the VMS help identify SOW project costs across disciplines and biographies, so you can identify the usage trends and forecast future costs? Are the workers being on-boarded properly, supplied with the necessary information and access to the enterprise systems as needed? Are we equally focused on removing such access when off-boarding the workers?
  • Can the VMS ensure that the SOW workers are being classified properly as per the facts and circumstances of the workplace relationship with the buyer working in a truly independent fashion and being paid rates commensurate with their skills and efforts? Are you ensuring compliance with relevant local laws in managing complex global projects?
  • Is the VMS tool global in nature using an agile management structure that can continuously anticipate and adjust to not only job specifications but time, language and monetary concerns?
  • Can the VMS allow multiple internal groups and suppliers to be involved in complex projects to play their roles in such a way as to deliver results simultaneously – managing communication, information-sharing and reliable approval cycles across all the stakeholders, including the client’s procurement, IT and finance teams?
  • Are the systems and processes designed such that inexperienced team members can also effortlessly and automatically implement the strategy and best practices in SOW management?
  • Can the VMS manage the complex issues involving time-and-materials, fixed price and/or fixed deliverables arrangements that authorize payments as and when milestones are met and deliverables approved?
  • Does the VMS track different rates, engagement structures and compliance requirements based on where the supplier is working at any given time?
  • Can the VMS track non-billable as well as billable resources and hours to account for all activities and provide the full picture to the project owner?
  • Does the VMS allow for project costs tied to multiple systems as well as an integrated and holistic view (instead of fragmented views) into the costs is necessary to retain overall control?
  • Does the VMS individually manage the vendor’s overall performance across all projects to accurately and properly charge the payments to the right project and the right cost codes?
  • Can the VMS, in the RFP process, configure any kind of question in the exact way you need instead of relying on basic Word or Excel documents? Additionally, the buyer can assign weighted points for each question, then reviewers can review the responses from suppliers and rate the answers. The buyer can see the comparison matrix to select the supplier to proceed with the agreement
  • Does the VMS allow the ability for one non-employee to work on multiple SOWs and can get paid accordingly? Similarly, does the VMS turn off cost codes that are no longer viable?
  • Does the VMS allow the buyer to define a master rate card and inherit the same for any project? Does the buyer have the ability to override the rate card?
  • Can the VMS allow suppliers (who may have more expertise in certain industries than buyer) to propose skill catalog items and milestones/deliverables, allowing the buyer to accept all items, change some items or reject all items?
  • Does the VMS have an approval process based on budget?

If your company depends heavily on SOW agreements, you can buy yourself peace-of-mind by looking for a VMS that offers all the above features and functionalities. Smart Track can do all of this and more because it was built to change with your changing needs like a chameleon changes colors to match its environment.

Check out our brochure “Smart Track: Chameleon for SOW Management” to see how you can leverage our VMS to manage your SOW. Only Smart Track was built specifically to handle your SOW project deliverables with seamless synchronization and ease.

If you require a demo, call our Smart Track team at 1-888-DCR-4VMS to see a trend-setting VMS capable of handling complex global SOW projects in action!

The content on this blog is for informational purposes only and cannot be construed as specific legal advice or as a substitute for competent legal advice. They reflect the opinions of DCR Workforce and may not reflect the opinions of any individual attorney. Do contact an attorney for advice specific to your issue or problem.
Sonali has 10 years of experience in software development, and has held different roles including Developer, Business System Analyst and Scrum Master. Her motto is “No compromising on quality.” She enjoys photography, sketching and DIY projects, and loves spending time with her daughter.