I'm looking forward to catching up with the Hackett guys this week -- we have a discussion set up for later today, in fact -- to discuss their latest research in the sector. But in the meantime, check out some of the highlights over on Purchasing which discuss Hackett's recent findings that "top-performing procurement organizations emphasize two key best practices: centralization and cross-functional teams." By way of example from the article, Hackett suggests that a "1 billion in annual spend can save $8 million in process costs alone by increasing the percentage of contracts negotiated centrally from 20% up to 80%." In addition, world class procurement organizations focus on supplier rationalization programs in a major way, "consolidating their purchases among 78% fewer suppliers than typical companies."
As many of you know, I'm a big fan of Hackett's research in the Spend Management world (and it's not just because of Pierre Mitchell's work, even though he certainly has been a huge asset to the firm). In my view, Hackett's benchmarking efforts are second to none in this sector. Without question, they can -- and should -- play a key part in helping procurement organizations how best to determine not only investment prioritization, but how to justify strategies to CFOs and other executives to get funding for new initiatives in the first place.