Category Archives: Procurement Research

Public Procurement Priority No. 1: Process Reform and Re-Engineering

public procurement

State procurement leaders say process reform and re-engineering will be their top priority of 2016, according to the National Association of State Procurement Officials. NASPO is a public procurement-focused nonprofit organization and recently released its list of the top 10 priorities state public procurement leaders say they will focus on in the new year. Check out the full top 10 list of top priorities.

Supply Chain Sustainability a Priority, But Achieving it Remains a Challenge

sustainable supply chain

The majority of executives see supply chain sustainability as a strategic priority, but few organizations actually have a plan in place or a dedicated team to create a greener supply chain, according to a recent study by West Monroe Partners the Supply and Value Chain Center of Loyola University Chicago. The study found 51% of executives in North America from a variety of industries, including consumer packaged goods and retail, said having a green supply chain is a top concern.

How to Implement Spend Compliance: 50 Shades of Pay (Part 20)

spend visibility

In this final edition of our spend compliance miniseries, we get into some implementation considerations for spend compliance. There is no perfect prescribed pathway for the compliance analytics highlighted in this series. And spend compliance itself sits within a much broader evolution in a journey from forensic “spent analysis” to predictive strategic supply analytics as shown below. In a perfect world, spend flows to suppliers, such that the processes and spend are both compliant with rightsized controls and contracts designed cross-functionally to optimally meet policies derived clearly from customer, shareholder, and regulatory requirements. But it’s not a perfect world. And it’s complicated.

Spend Compliance and Regulatory Compliance: 50 Shades of Pay (Part 19)

Regulatory compliance

In this latest installment of our six-part miniseries on spend compliance, we take a look at how spend data, and more importantly, process data related to the “process of spending” starting with sourcing into buying and paying, can give indications not only of regulatory non-compliance but also of policy non-compliance, as well as other risks that may exist even if not tied to a regulatory mandate or internal policy. So, spend data can highlight both reward and risk — and non-compliance, which is only one type of risk.

Spend Compliance via Supplier Compliance: 50 Shades of Pay (Part 18)

Supplier compliance

In the previous three installments of our miniseries on spend compliance, we introduced an overall framework for spend compliance analytics and then dove into contract compliance, payment compliance, budget compliance and process compliance. In this edition, we’re diving into supplier compliance and how to unlock some latent value there. We’ll assume you’ve already done some basic spend analysis to identify when you’re paying different prices from the same supplier for the same item, but obviously supplier compliance runs deeper. How? Read on.

Spend Compliance via Process Compliance: 50 Shades of Pay (Part 17)

Spend compliance

In the last installment of this miniseries, we explored spend compliance through the lens of contract compliance, payment compliance and budget compliance. In this edition, we dive into the topic of process compliance. If you can create smart controls in the right processes, you can eliminate the most frequent root causes to spend non-compliance. Since the source-to-pay process has three concurrent value streams of cash, information and the physical goods and services, there are multiple ways that incorrect process management and information can impact spend performance and value chain performance. So, follow the process errors, and you’ll follow the money left on the table. Let’s take a look.

Spend Compliance – Contracts, Payments and Budgets: 50 Shades of Pay (Part 16)

spend compliance

In our previous installment of this miniseries on spend compliance, we introduced a framework for developing a spend compliance strategy and a way to use spend analytics to support for components of the strategy. In this installment, we will dive into the first aspect of spent compliance that relates to contracts, payments and terms, and budgets. We’ll also use proven best practices based on research conducted earlier this year. This miniseries is also written to a broader audience beyond procurement so that procurement readers can forward the series to their counterparts in accounts payable, treasury, controllers, internal audit, risk management and the budget owners. Let’s dive in.

Summarizing Factors That Drive Sourcing Complexity

category management

Sourcing complexity can serve as a barrier to pursuing potential high-reward and high-risk procurement initiatives. But complexity does not have to stand in the way of savings, total cost or other improvements. Identifying how to pinpoint complexity is essential. An important place to start here involves fully exploring factors that drive sourcing complexity. In the paper

Sourcing and Measurement: The Start of the Spend Visibility Journey

spend visibility

Yesterday, I shared some of my foundational arguments about spend visibility and spend and supply analytics maturity from a Spend HQ webinar, The Spend Visibility Curve: Where Do You Stand. As part of this discussion, I introduced a 4-stage spend visibility maturity model that begins with what I termed “sourcing and measurement.” Sourcing and measurement provides a spend visibility foundation that continues throughout the model and, in fact, has its own layers as well.

Summer 2015 CPO Study Insights


Consero Group published the results of a CPO forum it held this summer and captured some data from the 47 participating CPOs. Consero is one of the many executive peer networking groups out there, and although this survey wasn’t exactly on the cutting edge – only 37% of the firms have spend under management over the 50% level, and the questions indicated Consero isn’t likely staffed by procurement experts – the survey seems to be a decent bellwether of the industry at large.

What Happened to FMS in the Past Year? Reading the Tea Leaves

cup of tea

In a recent article, "What Happened to FMS in the Past Year?” we discussed the emerging category of freelance management systems (FMS) and posed a question to presumptive FMS solution providers: What has happened over the past year? We did get some responses, and in this follow-up article we provide a synthesis of what we heard (or thought we heard).