Author Archives: Jason Busch

About Jason Busch

Jason Busch is the founder and Managing Director of Azul Partners (a media, publishing and advisory firm with ownership and management interest in a range of ventures). He started Azul Partners in 2004 after leaving FreeMarkets. The firm now controls the largest and most influential set of B2B, procurement and supply chain media and research resources online, reaching millions of readers and members each year through diverse properties including: Spend Matters, Spend Matters Plus/PRO, Spend Matters UK/Europe, Spend Matters Netherlands, MetalMiner, Public Spend Forum, Trade Financing Matters and Healthcare Matters. He is also active as a partner in Spend Matters Group, an advisory firm, which works with companies and private funds on transactional advisory and due diligence in the procurement, finance and supply chain areas. Jason is known for his role in shaping (and shaking up) the analyst, media and technology industries. He spends most of his time working on new ventures, helping put together strategic investments and buyouts for companies & private funds, and of course, continuing to research, write about and lecture on procurement, finance and supply chain topics that capture his interest. Prior to Azul Partners and FreeMarkets, Jason worked in consulting and merchant banking. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Pennsylvania.

Tying Organizational Transformation to Services Procurement: A Case Example (Part 1)

1218140-2590-D31A-40E893B31F1D745B At IQNavigator’s customer event earlier this month, I had the chance to listen to a case study from the services procurement program leader for a financial services firm, a story that offers lessons for procurement organizations regardless of industry. Most curiously, the company has started to tie elements of its overall organizational transformation efforts – the firm promoted within a chief transformation officer who is on the executive team – to its services procurement efforts.

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The Case for Change Management in Procurement: From the Horses Mouth

JHAWWKPMEU Change management in procurement does not get enough respect. But some organizations are making dedicated change management investments that are paying off. As we conclude our interview series with Paladin Associates’ Barb Ardell, we explore thoughts from organizations that have gone through a dedicated change management process.

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SciQuest’s 15.1 Release Ups the E-Procurement Ante – But How Does it Compare to Ariba and Coupa?

2724C9A9DE SciQuest launched its Version 15.1 of its suite at its recent NextLevel customer event in Washington, D.C. At the show, the Spend Matters team had the chance to look at all of the modules in SciQuest’s latest release and also preview some of the items slated for the 15.2 release this summer. The 15.1 release represents a critically important step for SciQuest in the P2P area in an increasingly competitive market – especially in conjunction with an announced partnership with Transcepta for e-invoicing and supplier enablement. Most important, 15.1 marks a critical step toward a full-featured and integrated source-to-pay (S2P) platform for SciQuest. Yet core P2P capabilities matter as well – beyond sourcing and supplier management. This Spend Matters PRO research brief provides an analysis of the P2P capabilities and enhancements in 15.1 – and offers our perspective on cases where SciQuest e-procurement is likely to be a strong shortlist contender for customers.

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Addressing Communication Challenges With Supplier Enablement and E-Invoicing: Lessons From a Fortune 500 Food/Beverage Company

- April 16, 2015 8:28 AM | Categories: Analysis, Case Study, Invoicing, P2P, Supplier Management

communication-dialer-telephone-3073-825x550 Even with an initial well-constructed strategy in place with support tactics, it is inevitable in any supplier enablement and e-invoicing deployment that things will not always go as planned, or issues will arise that couldn’t possibly have been pre-determined. One issue for an organization we recently talked to was around communications to suppliers requesting information. It turned out that a surprising number of suppliers going through the onboarding process believed the outbound email and phone-based efforts were “phishing” efforts designed to steal their confidential information (e.g., banking details).

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How Change Management Can Change Procurement For the Better

- April 16, 2015 6:41 AM | Categories: Change Management, Procurement Commentary

1129140-2590-D31A-402A89DD1F58ACC9 Many of us tend to dismiss the “soft” elements of procurement including change management initiatives. But as we’ve explored so far in this interview series with Paladin Associates’ Barb Ardell, procurement change management done right can have a huge impact. But how do you build the case for it? Today, we share some of the statistics that Barb provides in helping build the case for it.

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SciQuest: The New Suite Dimension That Puts the Supplier First

EAFA2E9467 SciQuest has proven to be one of the source-to-pay (S2P) leaders in higher education and life sciences (as well as some public sector areas). The organic traction it has realized in these markets – albeit with increasing competition from ESM Solutions, Periscope Holdings (BuySpeed/BidSync) and Unimarket within higher education and state/local government – signifies that it has been successful even without a fully integrated suite (until now) in its core industries. Currently, with the new integrated suite value proposition and particular strength at the intersection of P2P and supplier management (and rising capability in sourcing), it is likely to be in an even better position to compete in these and new markets. If you’re considering other providers such as Ariba, Coupa, SAP, Oracle and Ivalua for integrated S2P, this analysis will provide context to understand if SciQuest should be added to your vendor shortlist.

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Supplier Enablement and E-Invoicing: Lessons Learned From a Fortune 500 Food/Beverage Company

- April 15, 2015 8:33 AM | Categories: Invoicing, Learning / Research, P2P, Supplier Collaboration

L2KBJB91D6 There’s no substitute for learning from experience when it comes to supplier enablement for e-invoicing programs. Earlier this year, our research team spoke with the P2P process owner and head of supplier enrollment for a large food and beverage company. Spend Matters previously shared some of the early lessons in the first installment in this series based on the company’s rollout of Taulia’s connectivity and portal capability (after previously using the Xign solution). Today, we continue key lessons learned from this discussion.

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Successful Change Management Meets the CPO and VP of Supply Chain

- April 15, 2015 6:27 AM | Categories: Change Management, Supply Chain Management

arrow-direction-one-way-536-825x550 So many change management programs in procurement and supply chain fail – as do broader procurement transformation efforts that seem to be repeated every few years inside far too many companies. Today, we continue to share what we learned in our interview with Paladin Associates’ Barb Ardell on the topic. Also see the first and second installment of this series.

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Forget Everything You Knew About Change Management and Procurement

7C439FC197 Today, we continue our discussion with Paladin Associates’ Barb Ardell, exploring why we still ignore change management in procurement and supply chain and what is coming down the change management pike. Check out the first installment of this Q&A here, which was published yesterday. Today, Barb addresses the challenge of actually changing people's behavior.

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SciQuest Becoming a “Sweet” Suite Team Player

sciquest-228x138 Along with my colleague Jason Busch, I recently spent 3 days at the SciQuest customer conference in Washington, D.C., talking to dozens of customers and sitting through many product demonstrations and breakouts. SciQuest has invested significant money and effort to develop a new integrated source-to-pay (S2P) platform entirely, and the launch of its new version 15.1 signifies a material step forward in this area. This Spend Matters PRO analysis will provide an introduction to SciQuest’s new suite capabilities and roadmap. As I myself was an outsider to this firm before the event, it will be most useful starting from a low knowledge base on the provider as well as for those who may wish to consider adding SciQuest to their S2P vendor shortlist along within Ariba, SAP, Oracle, Coupa, Ivalua and others – and to understand where the provider comparatively fits today.

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Getting Smart on the Services Procurement Information Landscape

64696F92C4 The solution marketplace for services procurement is highly fragmented and is confusing to even expert practitioners and advisors. Given this, it is exceptionally important to become smart about your selections and the reality of actual capability vs. claimed, not to mention a provider’s ability to support process improvements across services supply chain needs. At times, expert industry analysts, managed services provider (MSP) thought leaders and consultants lack context and understanding outside of highly specialized areas to provide credible advice that spans the spectrum of buying and managing professional services.

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Change Management and Procurement: Sitting Down with Paladin’s Barb Ardell

climb-to-the-top-of-a-rockshenandoah-old-rag-Mt--110914988B312376 For those who love delving into such topics as total cost savings, inventory reduction and transactional efficiency in procurement and supply chain, there’s no more fluffy a topic than change management. But when the right change management programs sit alongside either targeted initiatives or broader transformation programs, the potential overall impact of efforts can be magnified considerably – and most importantly, sustained over time. In the coming days on Spend Matters, we’ll share an interview series with one of my personal favorite people in the sector, Barb Ardell, vice president and influencing change practice leader at Paladin Associates.

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