Successfully Doing Business with the Public Sector E32
If you’ve ever considered doing business with state or federal government entities, you know that the procurement and government sales process can feel like a maze of rules and regulations. So, how can your company stand out from competitors when pursuing business opportunities with the public sector?
The November 2022 episode of the Arizona Technology Council’s AZTechCast podcast featured experts including Ed Jimenez, director, State Procurement Office, State of Arizona; Paul Robles, sales executive, State and Local Government, Google Cloud; and Jennifer Woods, president, Traversant Group. These leaders joined Karen Nowicki, president and owner of Phoenix Business RadioX, and Steve Zylstra, president and CEO of the Arizona Technology Council, in discussing the complex nuances of the public sector’s primary motivations and operating models when it comes to procurement.
Throughout this hour-long episode, the panel of three experts convened in person at the Phoenix Business RadioX studio to discuss the ins and outs of why the private sector should consider doing business with the public sector, the primary barriers that prevent private companies from contracting with federal and state government entities and the advice that the panel would give smaller companies that are exploring becoming first-time contractors for the public sector.
Google helps our government transform how they serve their constituents. Google guides them through the challenges they face caused by outside pressures and massive demands on their systems.
Google helps them adopt new technologies and adapt to new ways of doing business quickly, efficiently, securely, and intelligently. By using Google Cloud, government systems are smarter, more efficient, and more responsive.
Paul Robles is an experienced leader with 25 years of sales, planning, and management experience in globally recognized entities including Hewlett Packard Enterprise, IBM, and American Airlines (formerly America West Airlines).
With a progressive career supporting various industries including the public sector, healthcare, financial services and travel, Paul focuses on driving business outcomes for his clients and team members.
The mission of the Arizona Department of Administration’s State Procurement Office is to help accelerate agency performance through value added services and offering agencies world class best practices in procurement.
Their vision is to be the #1 State Procurement office in the Nation, where adding value is the norm and customer service is second to none.
Ed Jimenez serves as the Director of the State Procurement Office for the Arizona Department of Administration. Ed is the State’s central procurement authority and is responsible for the authorization, oversight and management of the contracting and purchasing activities of the State.
Prior to his appointment, Ed served as the Executive Director in different capacities for The Boeing Company as well as the President and CEO for Supply Chain Whisperer, a supply chain consulting LLC.
Ed has been a provider of supply chain logistics and purchasing to aerospace and airline industries, including but not limited to: lean initiatives, procedures refresh/rewrites, supply base rationalization, subcontract strategies, commodity strategies, market analysis, warehouse optimization, strategic outsourcing, root cause analysis, balanced scorecards, employee development, negotiation strategies, project management, RFP development, and KPIs.
Traversant Group is the proven strategic and tactical business guide for organizations who wish to accelerate their success in the government market and achieve extraordinary outcomes.
Jennifer Woods has 20 years of experience in government relations, strategic planning, procurement, and public policy. Prior to starting Traversant Group in 2013, Jennifer served as the Arizona Deputy State Procurement Administrator to help lead the state’s procurement reform effort.
Previously, she was a Principal at one of Arizona’s largest public affairs firm where she was instrumental in creating the first government marketing and procurement business line in the Arizona lobbying community. Jennifer is also an attorney and has worked as a
commercial litigator at two national law firms.
Jennifer’s practice focuses on advising a broad range of clients from large corporations to small start-ups and non-profits on matters involving marketing strategies and government contracts at the local, state and federal level.
She develops and executes public sector sales and branding strategies, advises clients on government procurement and contract issues, and has lobbied on legislative matters.
About AZ TechCast
AZ TechCast is dedicated to covering innovation and technology in Arizona and beyond.
Through the art of connected conversation, AZ TechCast’s guests will share their expertise, success stories, news and analysis about the region’s leading startups, companies and emerging technologies, as well as the latest industry trends and critical issues propelling the state’s growing technology ecosystem.
About Your Hosts
Steve Zylstra serves as president and CEO of the Arizona Technology Council, a role he assumed in 2007. He is responsible for strategy, operations, finance and policy development. Zylstra is a vocal spokesman for the value technology can provide in raising social and economic standards in Arizona.
Zylstra serves on numerous councils, committees and boards, was named “Leader of the Year, Technology,” by the Arizona Capitol Times, and “Most Admired Leader” by the Phoenix Business Journal. In addition, he was awarded an honorary doctorate of science in technology from the University of Advancing Technology in Tempe, Ariz.
Zylstra earned a bachelor’s degree in automotive engineering technology from Western Michigan University.
Karen Nowicki is a successful author, speaker and the creator of Deep Impact Leadership™ and SoulMarks Coaching™. She is a two-time recipient of the prestigious national Choice Award® for her book and personal development retreat. Karen was crowned the first-ever “Mompreneur of the Year” Award in 2010 for the southwestern states. She was recognized for her leadership, business acumen, and work-life balance.
Karen has been an expert guest on regional TV and radio shows, including Fox Phoenix Morning Show, Sonoran Living, Good Morning Arizona, The Chat Room, and Mid-Day Arizona. She has been a regular contributor to many print and online magazines – publishing articles and blogs for business and education.
In addition to working with private coaching clients, Karen is also the Owner & President of Phoenix Business RadioX. The Business RadioX Network amplifies the voice of business – serving the Fortune 500,000, not just the Fortune 500. Phoenix Business RadioX helps local businesses and professional associations get the word out about the important work they’re doing to serve their market, profession, and community.
Of all the experiences Karen has had the privilege of participating in over her vast career, she shares that Phoenix Business RadioX is a pinnacle adventure!
Born in Phoenix, Arizona, Bianca Buliga is a trilingual first-generation American of Romanian ethnicity. A marketing professional with experience in both the nonprofit and for-profit sectors, Bianca currently works as Director, Marketing & Communications for the Arizona Technology Council.
Previously, Bianca worked as Marketing Communications Lead at Proctorio, a learning integrity platform that offers remote proctoring software ensuring exam integrity for learners around the world.
Bianca also worked as Senior Marketing Manager at SEED SPOT, a social impact incubator that educates, accelerates, and invests in impact-driven entrepreneurs creating market-based solutions to social problems. In January of 2020, Bianca was selected as an awardee of the Mandela Washington Reciprocal Exchange Program and traveled to the African island of Mauritius to run entrepreneurship programming for 15 impact-driven ecopreneurs on behalf of the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
Bianca has also completed comprehensive consulting projects for IBM, ESAN Business School, and the Peruvian government, and interned at the Arizona House of Representatives and U.S. Embassy in Bucharest, Romania.
Bianca earned her Bachelor’s degree in International Affairs from Northern Arizona University in 2014 and her Master’s degree in Global Affairs and Management from the Thunderbird School of Global Management in 2017. She is an avid reader, yogi, and world traveler always planning her next trip.
Connect with Bianca on LinkedIn.
About Our Sponsor
The Arizona Technology Council, Arizona’s only statewide organization serving the technology sector, fosters a climate of innovation to enhance technology in Arizona.
A trusted resource in strengthening Arizona’s technology industry, the Council proactively eliminates impediments that companies face, accelerates the entrepreneurial mindset in the state’s expanding innovation ecosystem, and works to create a destination for companies to be, thrive and stay.