NASHVILLE, TN — Nashville Electric Service’s (NES) Supplier Diversity Program received a big boost with the awarding of an information technology staffing contract to Ciber. The three-year outsourcing contract, worth an estimated $12,400,000, will include 49 percent participation by Zycron, a local minority firm owned by Darrell Freeman.
Ciber and Zycron will provide on-site information technology staffing services to NES.
This contract is part of a larger effort on NES’ part to actively seek out and do business with small, minority and women-owned businesses. NES’ Supplier Diversity Coordinator Almetta Bonds works daily in the community to identify and recruit minority businesses that are potential suppliers for NES. She assists them in learning how to qualify as an NES supplier or contractor, and explains how to participate in the often complicated competitive bidding process.
Numbers for NES’ Supplier Diversity Program continue to rise steadily. Second quarter program results showed vendor payments to minority businesses as a percentage of the total increasing from 12 to 14 percent. In addition, payment to all minority firms, regardless of size, increased from 8 to 11 percent.
NES has also had success in recruiting minority companies to assist with its vegetation management program. Omega Trees, a small, minority-owned company, partnered with Wolf Tree Experts to provide 30 percent of the tree removals and to furnish labor for 15 percent of the positions needed to perform time and material work. The amount of the contract is $6,250,000 over three years.
“Our goal is to provide small, minority and women-owned businesses with equal opportunity to provide goods and services to NES,” Bonds said. “We are committed to assisting small businesses that may have been placed at a competitive disadvantage in the past.”