Author Archives: Thomas Kase

Secrets to Better Technology RFPs – Avoiding Hijackings, Dying References and Key Takeaways

- January 21, 2015 2:28 AM | Categories: Procurement, Sourcing, Technology

Quick: Who do you think has the upper hand in procurement/vendor negotiations when it comes to buying technology, and specifically, enterprise applications? If you guessed the provider, you would be right, in all too many cases. But it doesn’t have to be this way. And in fact, the best processes are anything but zero sum games. As a first step to maximizing procurement value and aligning outcomes with the business (and your vendor), getting the RFI/RFP process right is a critical step. In this Spend Matters PRO Series, Vice President of Research Thomas Kase sheds light on a number of secrets of the trade and how to buy procurement technology – and indeed all technology – that much better. In this installment of the series, we explore how to avoid IT and legal hijacking of the process as well as key takeaways and recommendations for procurement organizations.

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Improving RFP-Driven Technology Sourcing Outcomes: Strategies and Tactics

- January 19, 2015 2:23 AM | Categories: Sourcing, Technology

How can you be a better prospective customer of choice and improve your odds of success? (This means having providers participate, willingly, happily and aggressively.) You can start by following our mini “buyer boot camp” to lower total costs, improve your selection success and even start to smell like roses to solution providers (and become a customer of choice) by sticking to a handful of key strategies. In Part 2 of our analysis looking at the failure of RFP-driven sourcing exercises when it comes to the buying of technology, Thomas Kase digs into a number of tactics and recommendations for getting the most from technology procurement – for source-to-pay (e-procurement, e-invoicing, supplier management, e-sourcing, networks, contract management, analytics, etc.) and far beyond.

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CSR is Practice – Chipotle Runs Out of Suppliers With Capacity

As is common in many "sustainable" and "diverse" areas in procurement (they are often grouped together and managed by the same director), it is hard to find suppliers with capacity. This is an evergreen topic among all supplier diversity professionals – how to get small and diverse firms to scale. Suppliers need capacity if they want to work with Fortune 500 firms looking to maintain a consistent customer experience nationwide. Chipotle has already found this out with its beef. And now, Chipotle has pulled pork from the menu at 600 of its restaurants across the country – not because of trichinosis outbreaks, but because of supplier practices.

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Technology RFPs: Are You Wasting Time and Money? (Part 1)

- January 15, 2015 2:17 AM | Categories: Procurement, Technology

Technology selections are an often overlooked but serious topic, especially given not just the time and effort involved – but also how long you'll live with the results of your decision. This article describes many cost/benefit aspects of the RFP process when it comes to technology solutions and shares some insider "secret" provider insights. We will also share how to avoid allocating inordinate amounts of time and resources in return for a suboptimal outcome. More importantly, and this might sound like a bold statement, sometimes (maybe even most of the time) it just doesn't make sense to go to RFP! Sourcing practitioners might scoff at this, but read on as we challenge the notion that an RFP is the best path to a successful solution provider selection outcome. Join Spend Matters Vice President of Research Thomas Kase as he embarks on one of the most pragmatic and universal Spend Matters PRO analyses to date.

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Supply Risk Management 2015 (Part 3): Seizing Leadership and Learning From Example

- January 12, 2015 2:23 AM | Categories: Supply Chain, Supply Risk, Supply Risk Management

As we conclude our examination of collected leadership, tactic and management lessons from top supply risk management programs, we explore the role of technology (and why there is no such thing as a “supply risk management software market”), extending enterprise risk management into the supply chain, why no silver risk bullets exist and how to frame the problem for maximum effect. This 3-part Spend Matters PRO brief, co-authored by Spend Matters Chief Research Officer Pierre Mitchell and Spend Matters Vice President of Research Thomas Kase provides an outlook on how best to manage supply risk programs. Thomas and Pierre, combined with Jason Busch, Spend Matters founder and managing director, have tackled supply chain risk for over a decade in their research. The 3 collectively bring 50 years of experience to exploring the intersections of procurement, risk management, supplier management and the supply chain.

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A Deep Dive on Trade Extensions – Market-Informed Sourcing (Part 2)

- December 22, 2014 6:50 AM | Categories: Analysis, Sourcing, Vendor Snapshots

Part 1 of this analysis looked at the business need for the market-informed sourcing (MIS) approach and how it can take us past where regular sourcing suites break down. Part 2 of this PRO research brief by Vice President of Research Thomas Kase focuses on Trade Extensions and its offering in greater detail.

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From Cuba With Love – Procurement Lessons From our Correspondent’s Visit

- December 19, 2014 2:38 AM | Categories: Analysis, Commentary, Procurement Commentary

Apropos the recent announcements regarding Cuba, I thought I would share some pictures and my thoughts of the country from my stay in Havana in 2010. Inspired by my colleague Pierre Mitchell, I've injected some of his humorous procurement analogies along the way. Make no mistake, though, this is a brutal place to be, especially if you are Cuban, but making fun of dictators (at a safe distance) is good sport, so here we go.

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J.P. Morgan Loses Its CPO

- December 18, 2014 6:29 AM | Categories: Breaking News, Industry News

J.P. Morgan is without a chief procurement officer. Richard Buccarelli, who served as CPO and had been with the bank since 2009, left the company several weeks ago. Why Buccarelli left was not made clear, and it's unclear what his next move may be.

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Market-Informed Sourcing – How Trade Extensions and Others Go Beyond Strategic Sourcing

- December 18, 2014 2:34 AM | Categories: Innovation, Sourcing, Vendor Snapshots

There’s a new strategic sourcing philosophy and capability on the market: market-informed sourcing. In this 2-part Spend Matters PRO research brief, Thomas Kase, vice president of research, explores the concept of market-informed sourcing and where it can take us – past where regular sourcing suites break down (even some of those with sourcing optimization). He also provides an in-depth look at one of the providers making market-informed sourcing a reality: Trade Extensions.

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Exploring Periscope Holdings’ Acquisition of BidSync

- December 16, 2014 10:08 AM | Categories: Analysis, E-Sourcing, eProcurement / Procurement, P2P, Public Sector

file000458994938 Earlier today, Spend Matters PRO provided a detailed look at BuySpeed and BidSync, 2 providers joining forces (along with the parent company Periscope Holdings and the core investor, Parthenon Capital) to target state and local government and the higher education market. The combination creates some degree of consolidation in the still highly-fragmented and under-penetrated market for procurement solutions within state and local government and higher education. Check out some of the highlights from the PRO analysis in this post.

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Periscope Holdings (BuySpeed) Acquires BidSync – Background and Vendor Analysis

- December 16, 2014 2:45 AM | Categories: E-Sourcing, eProcurement / Procurement, M&A, P2P, Public Sector, Sourcing

Fueled by liquidity from Parthenon Capital Partners, Periscope Holdings recently announced it acquired BidSync. Both companies have a core focus on procurement in the public sector (state and local government – not federal), as well as in higher education. BidSync is headquartered in Utah with more than 1,000 e-procurement customers (presumably derived from umbrella deals with groups bringing multiple parties to the table). This Spend Matters PRO analysis, authored by Thomas Kase, vice president of research, provides initial background and analysis on the 2 providers and the acquisition, with a focus on the acquiring company and its strategy.

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Suppliers Strain to Meet Demand For Protective Medical Suits as Ebola Epidemic Continues

1414562738yamt4 Demand for full medical protective suits is high as the Ebola epidemic spreads in Africa and threatens to reach other parts of the globe. As a consequence, supplies of the suits are struggling to keep up. To make the situation even more difficult, there are only a small number of companies that actually manufacture the types of protective suits involved. These suppliers are increasing production (some by as much as three times normal levels), but meeting the actual demand is still proving to be difficult.

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