purchasing

Vendor Performance
Tracking System (VPTS)

State Agencies

Successful agencies embrace their vendors, understand the added value good vendors bring and view them as partners to help them achieve their goals. The Vendor Performance Tracking System (VPTS) evaluates vendor performance and affects the vendor’s eligibility for state contracting. The VPTS provides state agencies with a system to evaluate, select and then reevaluate vendors to reduce risk in the contract awarding process.

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts is required to provide VPTS under Texas Government Code §2262.055 and 34 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) §20.509 and §20.115.

See an overview of the full VPTS process.

State Agencies' VPTS Roles and Responsibilities

  1. The contracting agency's contract management staff ensures the contract is performed satisfactorily. The contract is the responsibility of both parties: the agency and the vendor. Effective contract management prevents, minimizes and resolves problems and potential claims and disputes. For contract management to be successful, the contract manager must be involved throughout the procurement cycle.
  2. Agencies are required to report vendor performance for purchase orders throughout the life of the contract, within 30 days of the following events.
    Type of Review Reason
    AnnualReporting a vendor's performance annually.
    Purchase orders exceeding $25,000 Reporting a vendor's performance for a purchase order that has exceeded the $25,000 threshold.
    Key milestones (if value of a contract exceeds $5 million If the value of a contract exceeds $5 million, within 30 days of completion of a key milestone and at least once each year during the term of the contract.
    Contract/purchase order completion Reporting a vendor's performance when the contract has reached contract and/or PO completion.
  3. Accurate vendor performance reporting allows the contracting agency to submit positive and negative feedback, which includes documenting in the form of positive performance codes, negative performance codes, resolution codes and general comments/explanation.
  4. Best-value criteria considerations are required when determining contract awarding during the contract management phase of the procurement cycle and also are considered when vendor performance grades are determined.
  5. The contracting agency must consider all information collected from the appropriate contract management staff when scoring a vendor.
  6. After the agency determines a performance-based letter rating, the report submittal includes performance information and a grade ranging from A to F.
  7. Unsatisfactory vendor performance issues may require the contracting agency to consult with the agency's legal counsel to determine whether a corrective action plan is necessary.
  8. Unsatisfactory vendor performance issues involving material misrepresentations, fraud and/or breach of contract may require the contracting agency to determine whether debarment of the vendor is in the best interest of the agency.
  9. The Statewide Procurement Division (SPD) may also bar a vendor from participating in state contracts if more than two contracts between the vendor and the state have been terminated by the state for unsatisfactory vendor performance during the preceding three years.
    For details, refer to the State of Texas Procurement and Contract Management Guide.

Exemptions

  • Inter-agency contracts
  • Inter-local agreements
  • Memorandums of understanding
  • Sub-contracts issued by a company with which the state has a contract
  • Grant-funded procurements that are determined to be subrecipient or recipient by the respective state agency
  • Grant-funded procurements that are determined to be a contractor by the respective agency are required to comply with vendor performance reporting

FAQs

When should a vendor performance report be submitted to VPTS?

A contractor's performance must be reported to VPTS once a contract with a value exceeding $25,000 is completed or otherwise terminated. If the value of the contract exceeds $5 million, the agency must review the contractor's performance at least once each year during the term of the contract and at each key milestone identified for the contract.

How can I use VPTS as part of the best value criteria when evaluating a bid?

A statement must be placed in the Invitation for Bids and Request for Proposals stating that a vendor's past performance may be a best-value evaluation factor, and VPTS may be used as part of the best-value criteria. Please see the vendor performance best-value clause.

Can a vendor profile registration have more than one purchase order number?

A report may only contain one purchase order number. If multiple purchase order numbers apply to a particular contract, separate reports must be entered per purchase order number.

What happens when a state agency enters vendor identification or a contractor name that does not exist in the system?

Email vendor.performance@cpa.texas.gov and type VENDOR PROFILE REGISTRATION in the subject line. SPD will create a new vendor profile to allow the submission of a vendor performance report.

Your email should include the following information:

  • Complete company name
  • Vendor ID/tax ID
  • Vendor contact name
  • Phone number
  • Valid email address
  • Business address

Tips for State Agencies

Listed below are tips and tools to assist agencies to effectively rate vendors and track their performance.

Tip Description
Quality of Goods/Services Agencies should consider the strategy to utilize when monitoring the quality of the contractor's performance.
Timeliness of Delivery or Performance
(Deadlines, Milestones, Schedule)
Agencies should review the major points of the contract with the vendor, such as the value of the contract, major performance milestones, deliverables, reports, meetings) and time and place of delivery.
Price/Budget Monitoring the contract budget to ensure sufficient funds are available throughout the term of the contract.
Professionalism, Responsiveness,
Communication
Agency staff should exhibit a courteous, conscientious, and generally businesslike manner. Provide timely responses, to include appropriate and sympathetic interaction. Maintain a system which the agency and vendor can engage in exchanging verbal and/or written information.
Specific requirements included in the SOW A description of the products and services to be provided by the vendor who is awarded the contract. The success or failure of a contract can usually be linked to the adequacy of the planning, analysis, and thoroughness of the scope of work. Time spent planning, analyzing, and drafting the scope of work will result in savings of time, resources and money, and will improve the quality of products and service provided.
Determination of rating Accurately reporting contractor performance allows agencies to share vendor information and facilitates better oversight of state contracts. The monitoring activities chosen by the agency should be balanced in type, scope, and frequency to achieve the desired result for the particular procurement. Overly restrictive oversight may interfere with the contractor's ability to accomplish the work and may unnecessarily and inadvertently increase costs.

VPTS Process

  • Vendor Performance report search webpage: http://www.txsmartbuy.com/vpts . Be sure to use Google Chrome as the browser.
  • Report grades of “A”, “B” & “C”, are automatically published without comments.
  • Report grades of “D” or “F”, are placed in pending status to allow the vendor the opportunity to submit a vendor response within 30 days from submission date.
  • Vendor responses are forwarded to the submitting agency of the VPR for their review and consideration. It is left at the discretion of the agency to make a determination whether changes/revisions will be made to the VPR.
  • Published report grade of “D” or “F”, allows the vendor the opportunity to dispute the report by submitting a vendor protest form within 10 days of the published date.
  • VPTS System access or issues, first contact your direct agency superuser. A link of agency superusers is listed on the TxSmartbuy.com – VPTS entry log in page. Then, if issue still exist send email to: txsmartbuy@cpa.texas.gov
  • Agency Inquiries, Vendor Profile Registrations & VPR Updates: vendor.performance@cpa.texas.gov
  • A report may only contain one purchase order number. If multiple purchase order numbers apply to a particular contract, separate reports must be entered per purchase order number.

VPR Revision Request

  • Revision requests can be submitted to revise a VPR and grade for a specific purchase order within 48 months of the submittal date. In email format, include the vendor name, VID#, purchase order number and written justification for the grade revision.
  • Report grade change requests with priority and high-profile level involvement, may need additional agency approvals. CPA will advise the contracting agency on how to proceed with the request. The report grade change request must be in email format to Vendor Performance, including written justification for the change.
  • VPR correction request must be in email format to Vendor Performance. A copy of the published email notification can be forwarded for purposes of identifying the correct VPR. Also, a separate email requesting the revision request is also accepted, with all the incorrect/correct information included. The written justification for the revision must be included.

VPR Inactivation

  • VPR inactivation is not a common practice. VPRs are not deleted as they are considered a state record. State agencies are strongly recommended to not submit duplicate VPRs if an error is found on the report is found. The VPR correction request must be in email format to Vendor Performance. The revision/correction will be completed on the CPA end.

Vendor Profile Registrations

If at the time of VPR entry, and the agency user receives an error message occurs, “The VID number you entered is not registered in our list.” SPD will create a vendor profile in VPTS, allowing a vendor performance report to be submitted for the specific vendor. In email format, type VENDOR PROFILE REGISTRATION in the subject line, submit an email to: vendor.performance@cpa.texas.gov.

Provide the vendor information listed below:

  • Complete Company Name
  • Vendor ID/Tax ID
  • Vendor Contact Name (do not provide a unit or department name)
  • Phone Number
  • Valid Email Address
  • Business Address

Note: If an error message still occurs after the vendor profile has been created. Be sure to clear the Google Chrome cache/browser history.

Questions?

We’re available Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m.to 5:00 p.m.CST.