The NET+ Business, Procurement and Legal Advisory Committee (BPLAC) sponsored a working group to focus on vendor management in higher education IT.  In August of 2023, the working group submitted the framework they developed to share with the community and Internet2's NET+ program.   

BPLAC identified the following areas where vendor management activities are performed as foci for the Working Group:

  • Operational (technical) - performance related.  
    • Management of day-to-day or operational interactions with vendors. Maintaining good relationships with vendor technical staff for operational activities, security requirements, and monitoring SLAs.
  • Procurement Management - internal process and price related.  
    • Selecting vendors (RFPs/contracting), maintenance of vendor information, legal risk mitigation, payment relations (Procure-to-pay), tax information and documentation.
  • Strategic Relationship - relationship and value related.
    • Bigger picture relationship activities with vendors, shared vision of product(s) roadmap within the institution.  Quarterly business reviews, partnering activities to gain value from the contract and overall vendor relationship (wide-scale adoption initiatives, donations/development, internships, etc), and planning budgeting/finance.

View the working group's Community Framework for IT Vendor Management and a recording of their webinar from March 2024.  

If you have a passion for improving vendor management practices in research and higher ed, we invite you to reach out to us at

Working Group Members:

  • Emily Perry (Chair), University of Arizona
  • Matt D'Emilio (Sub-Group Lead), Carnegie Mellon University
  • Rebecca Kinkead (Sub-Group Lead), College of William & Mary
  • Alicia Klein (Sub-Group Lead), University of Maryland Global Campus
  • Emma Levett (Sub-Group Lead), Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Marra Austin, College of William & Mary
  • Scott Genung, University of Illinois
  • Lester Greenman, Northwestern University
  • Cindy Griffiths, Carnegie Mellon University
  • Joe Holewa, Harvard University
  • Dan Lewis, Clemson University
  • Sean Nicholson, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Steve Tanner, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Phan Truong, University of Maryland Global Campus
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