Search Results for: sourcing

Centralized vs. Decentralized Procurement: Technology as (one of) the Great Governance Disrupters

Jason Busch - September 26, 2014 2:43 AM

In procurement, we often look at technology as an enabler. For example, sourcing optimization technology can change how we source by allowing us to gather an increased set of data points from suppliers (and then apply our own constraints to understand how various biases or requirements create additional supply chain cost, such as requiring higher inventory levels, not awarding to the lowest bidder, etc.). Yet technology can enable more than just tactical activities like sourcing – it can also help redesign how we structure procurement teams and leadership to begin with.

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Supplier Performance Assessment – A “Good to Have” or a “Must Have” Process?

Guest Contributor - September 30, 2014 2:26 PM

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Meghana Rajamane of GEP. Once you have a competent supplier on board is the job of procurement done? Most companies today are tending toward complex supply chain ecosystems with an increased dependence on key supplier relationships to satisfy and delight their customers. Given this environment, it is imperative for an enterprise to be able to assess supplier performance. A supplier evaluation process is a must today for maintaining compliance, increasing competitiveness, identifying inefficiencies and driving improvement measures that impact the process.

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Lessons and Key Takeaways From Taulia’s Customer Conference: Tips, Insights and More [Plus+]

Jason Busch - September 29, 2014 10:42 AM

Last week, Jason Busch, founder and managing director of Spend Matters, spent two days at Taulia’s Customer Conference. Jason also facilitated a panel with two CPOs and a P2P process owner, each of which offered a candid take (and different perspective) on bridging working capital strategy and invoice discounting and adoption in the supply base. In this Spend Matters Plus analysis, Jason shares some of the key takeaways and lessons learned from the event talking with Taulia customers as well as those on the front lines of deploying invoicing and trade financing solutions. His observations are divided into three sections: accounts payable/procurement, the supplier perspective and external forces impacting (and driving) adoption.

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Local Sourcing and Localized Supply Chains for Magma and the Automotive Industry

Jason Busch - September 5, 2014 6:30 AM

Auto News recently reported that Magna International, one of the top three auto suppliers based in Canada, has been rethinking its supply chain of late, noting that “local strategy and efficiency improvements as key cost-saving measures within its supply chain.” In particular, supply chain localization was one of three trends within Magna’s supply chain identified by Carrie Van Ess, vice president of procurement for the Americas, at a recent industry briefing. Van Ess said a new supply chain model is emerging in which “goods are produced, sold and consumed in the same geographic region,” according to the article.

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Accenture Spend Trends Report: Logistics Market Intelligence – “Get Local” and More

Jason Busch - August 26, 2014 10:30 AM

Accenture's Spend Trends Report from Q2 (published in October) covers a number of macroeconomic areas impacting procurement and supply chain costs while also diving into a number of category-specific trends. One area the research brief explores is the logistics market, offering a global perspective on it and opportunities for savings and procurement improvement.

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Centralized vs. Decentralized Procurement: Centralization Theory Takes a Great Leap Forward (Courtesy of Peter Smith)

Jason Busch - September 25, 2014 2:26 AM

A couple of days back, we introduced our readers to the notion of a Center Led Action Network (CLAN) concept for structuring procurement, courtesy of my colleague Peter Smith (who recently authored the paper: . More than 10 years ago, Peter took this thinking a step further by introducing a more advanced CLAN, or Strategically Controlled Action Network (SCAN) as he termed it.

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

Jason Busch - August 19, 2014 10:42 AM

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.

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An Interview with Corporate Ink’s Amy Bermar, Part 1: What to Know Before Hiring a PR Firm

Thomas Kase - August 12, 2014 2:30 AM

Many public relations firms get fired after two or three years – hardly an ideal track record. With procurement more involved than ever, it’s time to look beneath the covers and boost the odds – not just the budget – in your favor. Thomas Kase interviews Corporate Ink's Amy Bermar, who has been on all sides of the agency pitch – selecting, winning, and losing. In Part 1 of this two-part interview, Amy talks about what companies should know before hiring a PR agency.

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Accenture Spend Trends Report: The Drivers of Category Trends Start with Economics

Jason Busch - August 13, 2014 10:31 AM

Who says that former sell-side analysts on Wall Street can’t do something better with their lives – like helping millions of procurement and supply chain managers make more informed decisions? My old friend and colleague Mark Hillman has shown there is hope for former financial minds that want to make a difference to industry. Mark recently joined Accenture after his former employer, Procurian, was acquired, and is leading up market intelligence efforts. One of this first public reports was released in early August. The Q2 edition of Accenture’s “Spend Trends” is a great piece of research that stands far above the type of analyses that knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) firms would charge clients a fee to deliver.

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Lower-End Sourcing Tools: When to Just Say No

Jason Busch - August 7, 2014 10:26 AM

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.

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When Receivables and Payables Financing Meets Bean Counting

Jason Busch - August 4, 2014 10:24 AM

My Trade Financing Matters colleague David Gustin has spent quite a bit of time over the years investing the accounting treatments of various trade financing schemes (from dynamic discounting to approved trade payables financing). Yet what’s most curious about this area is that we shouldn’t accept the current state of various accounting treatments (e.g., rebates vs. non-rebates and balance sheet impact) as gospel. Regulators and the Big 5 alike are still exploring the area in more detail.

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

Kyle Fitzsimmons - July 24, 2014 6:49 AM

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.

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New Downloadable Paper Delves Into Sourcing, Supply Chain

Kyle Fitzsimmons - July 22, 2014 2:22 AM

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.

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Centralized vs. Decentralized Procurement: Seeing the Benefits and Challenges of Centralization

Jason Busch - September 23, 2014 2:28 AM

On the surface, centralized procurement seems preferable to the alternative. As my colleague, Peter Smith observes, “It is perhaps easier to see the potential benefits of centralization than the drawbacks. Centralization means control – being able to control the suppliers and contracts that the organization uses. It means procurement can develop capability, and aggregate spend more easily.” This article continues our "Centralized vs. Decentralized Procurement" series on Peter Smith's paper.

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Not as Many Piggies Coming to Market

Guest Contributor - September 22, 2014 2:38 PM

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post by Mark Kozlowski of Mintec. With favorites such as pulled pork, chops and ribs, not to mention bacon, sausages and ham, it's little surprise that the U.S. is the third-largest consumer of pork after China and the EU. However, 2014 has been a roller coaster of a year for the U.S. pork industry, with hog prices hitting record highs earlier in the year before falling to more normal levels recently.

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Lessons from A&D: When Suppliers Take on an Outsourced Supply Chain Management Role

Jason Busch - June 16, 2014 6:26 AM

It is very easy today to “outsource” indirect procurement (though it’s not something that is necessarily by itself the right decision for companies – we’ll leave that topic for another day). But it’s a more difficult decision, no doubt, to indirectly or directly outsource parts of supply chain management to suppliers. Yet when companies turn to suppliers to provide finished parts and components, they’re doing precisely this, although they might not be hiring a partner such as a BPO to do it on their behalf. The same is also true, mind you, of the “outsourcing” that occurs when working with intermediaries and distributors in other spend areas, including logistics and MRO.

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FedEx, UPS, and Volumetric Pricing: A Tale of Three Boxes

Guest Contributor - June 19, 2014 1:35 PM

By now, just about every shipper has heard the news: effective January 1, 2015, all FedEx Ground shipments, regardless of size, will be subject to DIM (short fordimensional) charges. For many shippers, this will represent a very hefty increase. Are there any silver linings to these new DIM charges? Probably not much, but If you have high density shipments – over 10.4 lbs per cubic foot – there could be minor benefit to you. First, you were not subject to the DIM before, and will not be under the new rules. Secondly, the carriers will argue that since the shippers with “bad” cube will now be paying their fair share, it might translate into slightly lower annual rate increases in 2015 and beyond.

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Hey Brother, Can You Spare a Couple Hundred Thousand Tons of Local Cobalt and Graphite?

Jason Busch - June 2, 2014 6:35 AM

The benefits of local raw material supply are no doubt significant. But Tesla may directly face a “not in my backyard” challenge from environmental opponents as well as an indirect economic hurdle in identifying new local sources of supply given the business considerations involved. As SCD writes, “the US hasn't had an active cobalt mine since 1971. But a company called Formation Metals is developing a new one currently in Idaho. However, the Vancouver-based company needs to raise $120 million to complete the project, and new mine start-ups are historically risky endeavors.”

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Improving Government IT Procurement: Just How Serious is the Problem?

Sydney Lazarus - May 28, 2014 10:29 AM

Federal, state, and local governments in the U.S. spend more than $200 billion a year on information technology. The large scale of government IT programs means that delays and failures not only lead to wasted taxpayer money, but also negatively affect individuals who would benefit from these programs. After all, the success of these programs, whether concerning healthcare or security, in part hinges upon innovative IT. Public Spend Forum and Censeo have recently released a report titled "Billions in the Balance: Removing Barriers to Competition & Driving Innovation in the Public-Sector IT Market." We'll be covering findings from the report for Spend Matters readers.

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