Search Results for: sourcing

NEW Webinar: When Sourcing Meets Supplier Relationships in Retail and Grocery


It's not just about managing long-term supplier relationships anymore. It's about challenging them to get the most out of those suppliers over the long haul. Join us as we identify the general trends seen in retail and grocery procurement both today and in the future, and what cost containment strategies can be employed to maximize value and stakeholder-buy-in. Balancing the Carrot and Stick in a Hyper Competitive Cost Environment: Sourcing Meets Supplier Relationships in Retail and Grocery will take place Thursday, Feb. 25, at 12 p.m. CST.

Commoditized Raw Materials: Sourcing Strategies and Best Practices

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from GEP.

The process of sourcing commoditized raw materials is nuanced, with strategies that are not generally applied to other direct materials. While this article will dive deeper into the strategies deployed specifically with sourcing commodity chemicals, it is important to note that these principles can be applied to several other commoditized raw materials. In order to gain a better understanding of best practices with regard to sourcing, we first define what this article considers a commoditized chemical.

Event Procurement and Sourcing: Achieve Visibility with this 30-Minute Webinar


Are you looking to increase visibility into your major spend categories beyond the higher level of hotel and ground transportation? Are you finding it difficult to manage the category, let alone optimize it? So was Eli Lilly & Company, and its situation should shed some light on yours. Join us Wednesday, Feb. 10, at 10 a.m. CST, for the webinar How Eli Lilly & Company Achieved Visibility Through Event Category Transformation to learn more.

Anticipatory Sourcing: Anticipating What, And When

Spend Matters welcomes a guest post from Art van Bodegraven. When I use the term Anticipatory Sourcing without setting the stage fully and correctly with an audience, even an audience of one, the reaction is eerily reminiscent of the late and much lamented Richard Pryor exclaiming, "Say what?!?!?" (Shades of the cult classic film, “Stir Crazy.”) But, at the risk of offending and alienating, I will stake out the position that, unless you are doing anticipatory sourcing, you are taking up valuable space that ought to be occupied by someone more motivated, more aware, more understanding and, possibly, even a bit more intelligent.

Lower-End Sourcing Tools: When to Just Say No

In the first installment of this post, I considered the applicability of lower-end sourcing tools and when they’re most likely to be a good fit for organizations and under what scenarios. Today, as I continue this analysis, I’ll take the other side of the argument focused on when these tools can even do more harm than good, starting first with one of the biggest issues with e-sourcing technologies in the first place – the most valuable features all-too-often sit on the shelf, rarely if ever to be used by procurement organizations.

Recession-Era Pricing is Here to Stay in Sourcing Deals

The slowly fading recession has left a profound impact on pricing in sourcing contracts. That impact is seen in a trilogy of forces with long-term ramifications that will keep pricing at recession-era levels for the foreseeable future, even as contract volume rebounds with pent-up demand. This “new normal” imparts lasting implications on future sourcing agreements. There's a trilogy of forces keeping downward pressure on prices. Read on for what these are and for the implications of this new normal on pricing for future sourcing arrangements.

Exploring the Evolution of IT and Strategic Sourcing (Part 1)

When I first read about strategic sourcing in Forrester, IDC, and Gartner reports back in 1999, I thought the analysts had no clue what procurement was. But then I realized that they were specifically referring to another IT-centric definition of strategic sourcing, rather than one focused on broader procurement, finance, and supply chain. I came across a more recent article in Data Center Dynamics.

New Downloadable Paper Delves Into Sourcing, Supply Chain

Get the Spend Matters viewpoint on sourcing and its transformation into supply chain with a new, downloadable paper from Jason Busch (managing director). "When Sourcing Becomes Supply Chain" enforces the notion that data-driven analysis in procurement is essential and already underway. This movement can benefit organizations and businesses from various industries, and the paper digs deeper into the continuing outcomes that can be expected when sourcing and supply chain become one and the same.

Exploring the Evolution of IT and Strategic Sourcing (Part 2)

In the first of this two-part series, I briefly traced the evolution of IT strategic sourcing requirements, courtesy of a Data Center Dynamics column discussing an IT perspective on the evolution of procurement priorities and requirements. Today, we come to some of the specific requirements that IT sourcing programs have, including the need to focus on the full lifecycle of a supplier engagement to monitor and track savings. These include monitoring metering, charge-backs, and other areas.

Webinar: 7/29: Advanced Sourcing Strategy for Raw Materials


When you get into sourcing for specific categories, the category of raw materials doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Inflexible pricing, complex quality standards and a rising cost-of-change effect have combined to increase the need for a successful and advanced sourcing methodology. Enter the Spend Matters team and Trade Extensions for our upcoming webinar, Category Lessons: Applying Advanced Sourcing to Raw Materials. Join us Wednesday, July 29 at 10 a.m. for this live event. Register today!

Pre-Order Our August Direct Materials Sourcing Guide Today!


Over at our sister site, MetalMiner™, the Monthly Metal Buying Outlook report has officially launched as a commercial product! If you are sourcing direct materials then this is the report for you – an annual subscription (12 reports) can be yours for $899/year. This report compiles all the fundamental information for aluminum, copper, nickel, lead, zinc, tin and/or steel (HRC, CRC, HDG, Plate) in a single, easy-to-read executive overview. It includes analysis of the technical factors affecting the price of each direct material and offers specific levels to watch and strategies to employ. Subscribe today!

Lower-End Sourcing Tools: When to Just Say No (Part 3)

So far in this series, I have written about both the strengths and some of the limitations of basic sourcing tools – and when organizations should consider using them as opposed working with those that really do specialize in supporting more advanced sourcing organizations and sourcing requirements. Another key area that I’ve observed again and again in my research (including both public and private sector) in the case of more advanced tools is when organizations must have sourcing applications reflect heavy levels of governance and process based on regulatory or other requirements.

NASA, or Need Another Sourcing Act: IT Security Spending Horror Stories

We've recently been covering the travails of the latest scathing report to hit federal strategic sourcing circles: NASA’s inability to implement a strategic sourcing program including agency-wide spend visibility. The following is an excerpt from NASA’s Inspector General’s Report into one particular failure to use a strategic sourcing program to drive savings. It’s too good to not print in its entirety.

NASA, or Need Another Sourcing Act: Too Much Choice is Not a Good Thing

Sometimes “choice” in procurement is precisely what not to give to practitioners. This is especially the case as we consider the latest scandal to envelop NASA, who failed to implement a strategic sourcing and spend analysis program (see here and here) that provided even a modicum of leverage and visibility into spend within the agency. One “excuse” the agency provided was the numerous options for procurement that were available.

Lessons from A&D in Local Sourcing with Industry Certifications, Regulation, and Offsets

For those with total cost on their minds, re-shoring remains a hot topic – especially from the standpoint of factoring both price and risk into the supply chain equation. But in certain industries and categories, in-country or local sourcing is in fact the right strategy from the start. I came across an article in AMD that points out just how critically industry certifications and regulation can factor into the sourcing equation for markets such as A&D with specific requirements.

Webinar Replay: Check Out Last Week’s Recording on Supplier Collaboration in Strategic Sourcing!

Did you miss our webinar last week on supplier collaboration in strategic sourcing? Fear not because it is still available. Check out the recording of “Supplier Collaboration in Strategic Sourcing: an Oxymoron?” while it is still here to listen to! Thomas Kase (VP of Research) and Pierre Mitchell (Chief Research Officer) have also written a paper that provides helpful background if this topic is one of particular interest to you.

When Sourcing Becomes Supply Chain: The Case of One Massive Catalog (Part 1)

Drawing from the Spend Matters perspective When Sourcing Becomes Supply Chain, Jason considers the various constraints and requirements of an extended supply chain. There are trillions of potential permutations of optimal supply chain designs to ensure the highest possible fill rates, how to manage unit and total costs, improve sustainability metrics, and so on, but only one optimal outcome.

Hot Off the Press: Looking Back at Strategic Sourcing to Project the Future of E-Sourcing


Brand new hot-off-the-press research is now available from the Spend Matters team! Jason Busch, founder and managing director, and Thomas Kase, vice president of research, present The Past and Future of Strategic Sourcing – Looking Back to Look Forward at E-Sourcing. What does the future hold for strategic sourcing? Have we reached the full value potential for this segment or are there even more savings to be had? Get the full story here!

Advanced Sourcing: Of Market Gods and Sourcing Ministry…

If you’ve followed this series so far, you’ll already know that the types of technology that change the way we go about pursuing a particular supply chain and business outcome – not just a specific event or negotiation – can have a huge impact on the ability to engage stakeholders. It also explains why advanced sourcing approaches that are most successful on a first-time basis almost inevitably require third-party expertise to pull off (unless a procurement organization is already “up-skilled” enough with truly expert resources in both the market design and stakeholder/supplier engagement areas). One way to think about it is that the market designer is essentially playing the role of a sourcing god. The stakeholder/supplier engagement lead is the priest, minister, rabbi or shaman who preaches much to the flock and gets them on-board.

Using the Johari Window in Procurement and Sourcing

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Art van Bodegraven. What is that Johari Window thingy, anyway? The technique and the tool was developed in 1955 by American psychologists Harrington Ingham and Joseph Luft to help assess relationships with oneself and others, highlighting known and unknown areas and blind spots. Joe and Harry's visual tool quickly became the Johari Window. How does this apply to procurement and sourcing? We have, in any enterprise of any size, needs to deal with a staggering array vendors and suppliers of a vast range of size, sophistication, simplicity, complexity, services, products and materials. The Johari Window is an extraordinarily useful tool for sorting all this out.