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Sustainability in Procurement: Prevent the Next Bangladesh Factory Fire From Happening Again

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In our experience advising and doing research in the realm of risk management, many Spend Matters readers instinctively write longer and longer contracts with more and more regulations to follow. But these don’t necessarily prevent tragedies (even though they keep contract managers and attorneys in business). But how realistic is that? You will become cripplingly difficult to work with – and suppliers would pass along increased costs. This paper walks you through the Spend Matters risk management starting point.

Choosing Procurement Technology – Where Maturity Meets Solutions

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Today, you're just starting out long your long procurement technology journey. But like any talented procurement person, you're always thinking about the future. In the second of our series on how to invest wisely in procurement technology now that will carry you forward, Thomas Kase talks maturity models and everything that goes along with them. Download today!

Implementation Considerations in Quantifying and Tracking Hard Cost Savings

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“What are cost savings, really?” you may ask yourself. It’s a simple question with a surprisingly complex answer. In this new research download, Pierre Mitchell walks through various ways procurement can lock down hard cost savings in all sorts of areas beyond reducing spend. Download now to learn exactly how to get procurement the credit it deserves.

Choosing Procurement Technology That Grows With You

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As a procurement practitioner, when you start looking at the portfolio of solutions you have available today, some patterns will likely emerge. First, you’ll have a range of tools in your arsenal. There will be a few painfully obsolete tools that are creaking along. There will be specific procurement tools (analytics, sourcing, etc.) not used by many. There will be several mainstream ERP solutions that are used nearly daily by all. And there will be peripheral tools where the procurement technology waters get murkier. What does this tell us about how we select and use procurement technology and what are the lessons learned? This paper is part of one of the most important parts of a Spend Matters PRO series we’ll publish this fall for companies looking to get more from their solution investments (whether you’re ramping up organized programs for the first time or replacing earlier solutions, it does not matter).

Procurement Centers of Excellence (CoE) – What’s In Them and How to Set Them Up

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There is no one perfect way to organize your procurement CoE. As you may have guessed, it all depends on your existing organization structure and operating model. You'll quickly find that it's not really about the size of the toolbox, but rather making sure you have the right tools for the job (and the master craftspeople to use them). That said, there is some standardization that can be followed, and Pierre Mitchell walks you through that and many other Center of Excellence how-tos in this research. 

Procurement Analytics: How to Plan (and Optimize) Your Process

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Since procurement, the department, is responsible for supply management (or spend management, if you like), the process, the proper scope for “analytics” is to help answer the right set of questions surrounding the optimal management of supply. Therefore, the scope of this business process is massive, and so is the breadth of technology used for supply analytics. But the key thing to remember is the analytics is a business capability - not just about technology. This paper, excerpted from our Spend Matters PRO Procurement Information Architecture series, is here to help guide you through the analytics process.

Write Better RFPs – How to Get What You Want (and Need) From Suppliers

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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. This paper offers some fresh ideas to that old challenge: conveying your needs in ways that a supplier can relate to and that encourages them to put their best foot forward, with a proposal that goes beyond your wants and addresses your needs as well.

Metadata Explained: What it Means for Spend Analytics, Supply Risk, Supplier Performance, and More

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In procurement, especially in areas of risk management, the opportunity to develop additional value from metadata analysis is enticing. Sure, it requires a bit of initial programming and possibly some hardware to really massage the data, but after that there’s really no variable cost associated with this. The benefits can be tremendous – done right, this will be the most power risk analysis and opportunity assessment approach supply chain has ever seen. This paper illustrates some practical ideas regarding the benefits.

How to Justify Spend Analysis to Finance / IT When There’s No Clear ROI

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Analytics are all the rage. And spend analysis is Procurement 101. So, getting some reasonable investment shouldn't be a problem, right? Wrong. The problem with analytics is that the identified value is all “option value.” You don't know how much value opportunity you will uncover with the analytics until you actually perform them (and implement the identified opportunities)! This article, which previously appeared on Spend Matters PRO, gives you ten ways to overcome this Catch-22 problem.

Ask the Expert: Contract Management Dilemmas – To Trust or Track the Supplier

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Trust only goes so far - but the same can be said for tracking! In this Ask the Expert session, Peter Smith of Spend Matters UK/Europe walks you through how to achieve a proper balance to assure that you're getting what you need from your suppliers - and they don't roll their eyes every time they receive an email or phone call from you.

Why Procurement Should Control Payments

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Learn ten reasons procurement shouldn't forget the second "P" in "P2P" (if you did forget, it stands for "pay"). Payment matters much more than most folks in procurement think. By taking control of the area, we can do an end-run around the administration hassles and supplier headaches that poorly-run A/P functions create. And that's just one reason for procurement to get involved in payment strategy and execution - download this paper for the other nine!

Ask the Expert: The HR Side of Sourcing and Procurement

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Whether you're doing the hiring (or firing), Spend Matters Netherland's Gert van der Heijden walks you through some helpful tips and tactics to recruit and maintain the best possible sourcing and procurement team. From competencies, categories, and kraljic to continuous improvement and output vs. input, this session will help you navigate the HR world specific to sourcing and procurement.

Ask the Expert: Write a Better RFP – Dare to Try a New Approach

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Sure you know all about writing RFPs. But perhaps you have fallen into the trap of asking for feedback but expecting validation? You wouldn’t be the first buyer: it is an occupational hazard. This Ask the Expert replay features Thomas Kase, giving you some practical ideas around how to break this cycle.

Supply Chains in the Cloud

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Our recent contribution to Fluor's Material Market Bulletin on cloud computing, procurement, and supply chain management. We didn't expect the end result to be an entire book chapter on the subject, now called Supply Chain in the Cloud. It's so rich in content and expertise that we decided to turn it into a research download for Spend Matters Plus/PRO members as a primer on what procurement organizations should know about putting mission-critical procurement applications into the cloud.