Cooperative Contracts Program Overview
DIR’s Cooperative (Co-op) Contracts program
is a streamlined cooperative purchasing program for state and local government, public education, and other public entities in Texas, as well as public entities outside the state.
We currently offer more than 650 cooperative purchasing contracts for technology products and services including hardware, software, staffing services, maintenance, and other services with a high customer demand, such as managed services and technology training.
$1.5 Billion in Purchases, $270 million in Taxpayer Savings
We leverage the state’s purchasing power to negotiate competitive discounts with vendors, saving taxpayer money. In fiscal year 2011 we reached over $1.5 billion in technology customer purchases, which translates into more than $270 million in savings for taxpayers:*
- Texas state agencies saved over $109 million*
- K–12 public education institutions saved more than $68 million*
- Cities, counties, and other local governments across Texas saved $56 million*
- Public universities and other higher education institutions saved more than $39 million*
Every dollar our customers save on the purchase of technology goods and services is a dollar that can be spent on mission-critical services such as education and health care.
Who Are Our Customers?
Any Texas state, county or local government office or public education entity—no matter how small—can participate in the Co-op Contracts program. Public entities outside the State of Texas may also use our program (more details here). While Texas state agencies are required to use our services, our other customers do so voluntarily because of the tremendous savings we offer on technology purchases. The following chart shows the current distribution of our customers:
Local Government – 22%
Education (Higher Ed and K–12) – 45%
State Agencies – 33%
Other (Asst. Org and Out of State) – Less than 1%
Review our customer eligibility requirements to see if your organization qualifies for participation in the Co-op Contracts program.
For Purchasers: Why Buy from Co-op Contracts?
- Save Time. All contracts have been competitively bid so you no longer have to prepare competitive solicitations or evaluate responses. DIR has done the time-consuming procurement work for you and has negotiated discounts on hundreds of products and services. Texas Government Code 2054.0565 states that the Co-op Contracts program meet the competitive requirements for all governmental entities.
- Save Money. We leverage the volume buying power of the State of Texas to negotiate competitive pricing, which translates into big savings for your organization. You can negotiate even deeper discounts based on large volume purchases.
- Choose from a Wide Selection. DIR usually awards multiple contracts for each product/service RFO so that you have a choice. At 650+ contracts and growing, we have the products and services you are looking for. Choose from 20+ brands of computers, 1,100+ software titles, 35+ brands of printers, and much more, all available from multiple vendors.
- Experience the Convenience. The new and improved products and services search makes the buying process easy. You can browse by product type and subtype, vendor, brand or HUB to locate the products you need. When you are ready to make a purchase, we connect you directly to the vendor with information on pricing, ordering process and other details.
Read more about customer eligibility, including information for customers outside Texas.
For Vendors: Why Participate in the Co-op Contracts Program
- Save time and money. Our vendors respond to fewer individual bid invitations because we have already completed the competitive bid process required by the state.
- Get access to our large and growing customer base. All state agencies, cities, counties and other local governments, public school districts and public colleges and universities are eligible to purchase through the Co-op Contracts program.
- Gain public sector business development opportunities. Once you are awarded a contract, you have the potential to expand your business with our customer base. You will also have the opportunity to market your product/services at DIR-sponsored tradeshows and gain exposure through our website.
Read more on how to become a vendor.
*DIR calculates savings based on the difference between the DIR price and the price available from other cooperative programs in other states. Additional value (soft costs) not included in the calculation are:
- Time/Salary Savings associated with streamlined procurement process
- Additional services or benefits such as “free training"
- Improved performance standards and accountability requirements