Category Archives: Supplier Management

Has Supply Chain Policing Gone Too Far?

Is Dodd-Frank really necessary (and if it was wouldn’t it have been implemented yet)? Why do most of the most successful supplier diversity programs we can point to have little focus on adhering to requirements for government contracting and more on doing what is right by customers and growth market segments? And perhaps most serious of all, why does China care about REACH/ROHS and even clean energy when they can’t police their state-owned companies? Nor can they go after suppliers that these organizations purchase from for behavior that would be aberrant in more civilized countries – labor practices, counterfeit and often dangerous materials/substances, theft of IP and other trade secrets, and just about any other supply chain risk infraction you can point to in recent news headlines.

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Webinar On-Demand: Choosing Your Supplier Management Suite

- July 21, 2014 6:45 AM | Categories: Supplier Management

No need to mark your calendars for this webinar! Jason Busch (founder and group managing director) examines the ongoing debate on supplier management technology in this on-demand recording. The “sweetest suite” path could come in the form of a module, a suite or a best-of-breed scenario, but if you’re currently stressing about which road to take, then this webinar is for you.

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Looking at Supply Chain Risk Like an Insurance Provider: Do Business Here, Not There

It would be great to have a supply chain risk silver bullet that highlighted specific suppliers that present riskier prospects. That would be financial risk variables, broader supply chain exposure, political risk (of site/factory/host countries), and more. Short of this risk management panacea or expensive one-off analysis, the 2014 FM Global Resilience Index is a fascinating starting point, at least as it pertains to both country specific risk and the overall factors that contribute to supply chain risk.

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Learn Tips on How to Enhance Your RFPs With This Must-Read Research Paper

- July 17, 2014 6:24 AM | Categories: Learning / Research, Supplier Management

The typical business challenge when you go to market with an RFP centers on getting ideas for what is possible, and identifying suppliers that either already have these ideas or are willing to work with you toward that end. Targeted activities are often services or complex products where quality, service, or the engineered final product will be different from each vendor responding.

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Last Chance to Register! Get Your Supplier Ducks in a Row for Strategic Sourcing With This Webinar

- July 16, 2014 6:19 AM | Categories: Sourcing, Supplier Collaboration, Supplier Management

Register here for the webinar we're holding today at 12 pm CDT, "Supplier Collaboration in Strategic Sourcing: an Oxymoron?”. Presented by Pierre Mitchell (Chief Research Officer) and Stacy Leidwinger (Director of Product Management, Directworks), today's webinar will delve into why supplier collaboration is so essential to successful strategic sourcing and why that combination isn’t as elusive as you might think.

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Procuring the Brazuca: The Complexity of Sourcing a World Cup Football

The Adidas “Brazuca” was the official ball of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Over the last month, more than a billion people watched this ball from more than 200 countries (talk about sensitive procurement categories). To add to that, the last World Cup’s “Jabulani” was mired in an “aerodynamics controversy,” resulting in even more pressure to get this one right. Read on to see how procuring a Brazuca is a good case study in managing suppliers down your supply chain.

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Contract Management and Manufacturing: On Industrial-Specific Use Cases for CLM

- July 14, 2014 10:30 AM | Categories: Contract Management, Supplier Management

Many questions we get regarding contract management suggests that most practitioners and consultants think of contract lifecycle management software as a somewhat generic set of capabilities that work across industries without significant tailoring, customization, or configuration. But in fact there are a number of specific use cases for manufacturing environments. And there are also more advanced use cases in manufacturing.

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Enhance Your Supplier Relationships With This Paper/Webinar One-Two Punch

- July 14, 2014 6:09 AM | Categories: Supplier Collaboration, Supplier Management

Supplier Collaboration in Strategic Sourcing: an Oxymoron? We certainly don’t think so. Join us on Wednesday, July 16 at 12 p.m. CDT for an informative webinar with Stacy Leidwinger (Director of Product Management, Directworks) and Pierre Mitchell (Chief Research Officer, Spend Matters) as they delve into tactics and strategies that have already been used by manufacturers in creating joint value with suppliers. Register now!

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GTCR & Opus Global Buy Hiperos: Consolidation Begins in Supplier Management Solution Market (Part 1)

- July 10, 2014 3:23 PM | Categories: M&A, Solution Providers, Supplier Management

Marketing can have a funny influence on things. Hiperos labels what it enables as “third party management” rather than “supplier management” or “supplier lifecycle management.” But make no mistake. This is a play with words by a clever marketing department and doesn’t mean a different core value proposition. (We think this comes from a sales focus on finance rather than procurement; to the CFO it’s all a bunch of third parties and compliance, and finance just can’t be bothered with terms like suppliers.) When GTCR and Opus Global acquired Hiperos earlier this week and not only kept the current management (one of whom is a major investor) actively engaged in the business but also put them on the broader holding company’s board, they were making a bet on the need to better manage traditional indirect suppliers, staffing companies, consultants, BPOs, and others who serve customers in a contracted way – in their case, typically large financial services clients. In many cases, Hiperos led with a “meet the [fill in the blank] regulatory requirement” value proposition – a message that works, especially for a finance audience.

But what Hiperos and its competitors (Aravo, HICX, IBM/Emptoris, Lavante, Oracle, SAP, and many others) are capable of accomplishing in the sector far transcends simply meeting check-the-box regulations. Done right, the better engagement of suppliers across a lifecycle is a massive undertaking, as it starts with a tailored onboarding process (don’t count on your P2P or e-invoicing provider to touch more than a few bases in this area) and carries through to supplier engagement, performance management, development, risk management and eventually off-boarding (by PO, assignment or overall) at both the SKU and overall vendor level. And it’s an undertaking that can transform procurement and finance outcomes spanning all non-employee resources and T&E-related spending (which represents a massive portion of the business). For this and related reasons, we believe that in 2015 (and perhaps sooner) we will see more consolidation in this market. In this three-part Spend Matters Plus research series, VP of Research Thomas Kase and Managing Director Jason Busch consider the backdrop and rationale behind the expected consolidation and offer predictions for what moves to watch. Our analysis today begins with why this market is becoming more strategic to customers.

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Using Technology to Transform Sourcing and Supplier Management: Build or Buy?

- July 10, 2014 2:23 AM | Categories: Guest Post, Sourcing, Supplier Management

Construction worker The first two posts of this series by Directworks' Michael Cross looked at the people and process aspects that manufacturers must consider as they start working on sourcing and supplier management transformation. Once the hiring, skills development, and process improvements are on the right track, it is time to turn to technology. If you are a manufacturer, true sourcing and supplier management transformation requires tools that enable automation, integration, standardization (but with configurability), collaboration, and real-time analytics. Email and spreadsheets cannot be your primary system, and general-purpose e-sourcing tools cannot handle the complexities of direct materials sourcing. A technology solution is absolutely required. The question is: will you build it or buy it?

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Transforming Sourcing and Supplier Management: Seeking Process Excellence

Michael Cross began this series of blog posts by discussing the concept of the manufacturer of the future. He intentionally narrowed the emphasis on how manufacturers are beginning to transform their sourcing and supplier management functions, as these activities have become far more strategic than just a decade ago. These functions now require different skills, processes, and technology enablers. Yesterday, he focused on how the skill sets in the back-office need to evolve. In today's Part 2, he will talk about processes, specifically emerging best practices that can greatly facilitate this evolution.

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Hiperos Acquired by GTCR and Opus Global Holdings: Analysis and Implications

- July 8, 2014 12:30 PM | Categories: Breaking News, M&A, Supplier Management, Technology

Earlier today, GTCR and Opus Global Holdings collectively announced they had acquired Hiperos, the supplier (and other third-party) management vendor. Hiperos is originally a supplier performance management (SPM) focused provider from Southborough, Mass. It has since expanded to deliver a broad range of third-party data collection and supplier lifecycle management solutions – and will now operate as a business unit under Opus Global. Opus Global in turn is a JV between GTCR (a private equity firm from Chicago) and Doug Bergeron. Bergeron was until 2013 the CEO of VeriFone and is now the CEO of Opus Global. GTCR and Bergeron go back to VeriFone – which Bergeron (together with another investor) had bought from HP for pennies on the dollar ($50 million for an asset which HP has paid $1.3 billion). When Bergeron resigned after 12 years as CEO, the company had a market valuation of $3.5 billion. (We thought Bergeron’s long-term ownership and patient growth focus background is important to note.) Note also that Bergeron’s background is from the financial services industry – where Hiperos has a strong presence. In this Spend Matters PRO analysis, VP of Research Thomas Kase and Managing Director Jason Busch take a closer look at Hiperos (including a detailed SWOT analysis), private equity/buyout implications, the prospects for the supplier and third-party management market, and what the acquisition means for customers, prospects, and competitors.

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