Spend Matters Premium Content:

What Do Procurement People Do All Day? (And What Should They Do?) [Plus +]

- October 24, 2014 10:19 AM

blur-city-crowd-1719-821x550 I saw a blog post a few months back asking the question about how chief procurement officers (CPOs) spend their time. Although the post was really just a Trojan Horse for campaigning a full-blown “benchmarking” survey, the topic is a good one to explore, and there is already some solid quantitative research on the topic. For those of you who have children, you may be familiar with Richard Scarry’s book What do People Do All Day. It’s a wonderful illustrated children’s book dealing with all of the various roles that people play in a small town. Of course, I didn't see any procurement people, and I was envisioning a small, dimly lit negotiations room where supplier people were, ahem, “sharpening their pencils.” But, there was a firefighter, so perhaps that is close enough.

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50 Shades of Pay: Shade 7 – Purchase and Payment Historical Spending [Plus +]

- October 13, 2014 2:36 AM

In the last six installments of this research series, we’ve talked about the numerous ways to mine and utilize payment history data to create value. But, you can't really do spend analysis without analyzing purchase history too. In other words, we are now going to analyze what you purchased rather than just whom you paid. In our next two installments, we will talk about more granular insights into receiving and upstream into requisitioning. And only then we will get into how to automatically classify line item details into a spend category taxonomy and cross reference that spending data back to contracts. So, for now, we are just going to focus on purchase orders.

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Diving Into the World’s Largest “Guided Buying” E-Procurement Implementation [Plus +]

- October 9, 2014 6:41 AM

In this Spend Matters Plus article, we dive into some of the details at what is likely the largest implementation of “guided buying” currently underway in the world. What’s interesting though is not just the scale of this global implementation, but its approach. The firm has 10-digit spending across dozens of countries with more than 100,000 active users who access a unified catalog, category-specific “smart” requisition templates, specialized punch outs to category-specific systems and integration to internal shared services centers. What’s also surprising is what solution provider is actually powering it.

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CPO Insight: Procurement Transformation – Myth or Reality? [Plus +]

- September 30, 2014 6:27 AM

What does a "transformation" really take to be successful? I'm writing this from the economy cabin of a very busy London to Dubai flight, on my way to run a couple of workshops in Dubai and Abu Dhabi for the BravoSolution joint venture in the region, Tejari. By the time you read this, the workshop will be completed, and the topic in Dubai is Procurement Transformation - Myth or Reality? One of the reasons we chose this as a topic is that "transformation" has become an over-used expression and procurement has not been immune to its charms. In this Plus article, Pierre Smith talks about what exactly a procurement "transformation" means.

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Lessons and Key Takeaways From Taulia’s Customer Conference: Tips, Insights and More [Plus +]

- September 29, 2014 10:42 AM

Last week, Jason Busch, founder and managing director of Spend Matters, spent two days at Taulia’s Customer Conference. Jason also facilitated a panel with two CPOs and a P2P process owner, each of which offered a candid take (and different perspective) on bridging working capital strategy and invoice discounting and adoption in the supply base. In this Spend Matters Plus analysis, Jason shares some of the key takeaways and lessons learned from the event talking with Taulia customers as well as those on the front lines of deploying invoicing and trade financing solutions. His observations are divided into three sections: accounts payable/procurement, the supplier perspective and external forces impacting (and driving) adoption.

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50 Shades of Pay: Shade 5 – Diving Into the Invoice-to-Pay “Transaction Factory” [Plus +]

- September 25, 2014 6:32 AM

file1361306993785 In our last installment of this “50 Shades” series on spend analysis, we alluded to the concept of the “transaction factory.” Basically, we’re talking about managing transactional documents like POs, receipts, invoices, and payments with the same rigor that products are managed as they flow through a world-class production facility. For right now, we’ll address the “invoice factory” and “payment factory” since we’re talking about A/P-based spend analysis (for now). Spend Matters' Chief Research Officer Pierre Mitchell continues his 50 Shades PLUS series, this time touching on "Shade 5."

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CPO Insight: Procurement Transformation – Myth or Reality? [Plus +]

- September 22, 2014 10:30 AM

"Transformation" has become an overused expression, and procurement has not been immune to its charms. It's hard to get far into any procurement-related publication, or report from a consulting firm, without running up against the “T” word. Virtually every managerial-level candidate now has "transformed" something in their past career. Even if it was just the process for ordering office supplies. In this Spend Matters Plus Research brief, Peter Smith, lead editor of Spend Matters UK/Europe, explores what transformation really means, and if we can agree that it does have some genuine meaning (in some cases, at least) – and how chief procurement officers (CPOs) and other procurement leaders can go about making it happen.

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The Spend Matters Stock Portfolio — Half Year Round-Up [Plus +]

- July 7, 2014 2:32 AM

We are halfway through 2014, and we're halfway through our Spend Matters stock portfolio challenge. Regular readers will know that we identified a portfolio of 21 companies with a procurement content and interest in order to track their performance and get a sense of where the market for “our” firms was going. Jason Busch and I then chose our own preferred portfolios from those stocks, each using an imaginary $1 million fund. He focused on just eight firms; I spread my risk with 14. So how was June? Relatively uneventful, if I’m honest, compared to some months when we’ve had major price movements.

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SAP and Ariba: Examining Cloud and On-Premise Choices and Product-Line Competition [PRO]

- May 23, 2014 9:59 AM

Even though Ariba is now operating under the procurement line of business at SAP – rather than as an independent company within the SAP umbrella – it still has a lot of influence on sales behavior in the field given the product choices suggested to customers (there’s sometimes more on the available product price sheet than is portrayed). For one, the rumors of the death of SAP SRM are greatly exaggerated – the current roadmap goes out over five years! In this Spend Matters PRO research brief, Chief Research Officer Pierre Mitchell and Managing Director Jason Busch provide an overview of many of the products on the SAP procurement price sheet now (coming from both Ariba and SAP) including spend analysis, sourcing, eProcurement/transactional purchasing, e-invoicing, and supplier management. In the analysis, the two analysts also comment on some of the statements SAP is making to customers about recommended solutions. This is the first in a highly detailed set of briefing papers we will be offering covering the SAP and Ariba product/solution set, roadmap, network strategy, and broader procurement vision, inclusive of direct materials and services procurement enablement.

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Spend Matters Stock Portfolio – A Black April (Especially for Jason Busch) [Plus +]

- May 2, 2014 2:26 AM

Another month has gone by, and I write this on the morning of May Day, a historical English spring festival and of course the international day for celebrating the labour movement, communism, and all things not particularly capitalistic. So it’s ironic perhaps that this is when we’re taking our monthly look at our stock (shares) portfolio of publicly quoted businesses with a significant procurement element. Just as in March, the (imaginary) Spend Matters Stock Portfolio has gone backwards. It lost around 4.5 percent of its value and now stands at just 1.4 percent above where it started on January 1st. After at one point being almost 10 percent up, we’re almost back to square one.

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Making of the Secret Sauce: Tricks for Using the Open Web for Supply Market Intelligence [Plus +]

- April 11, 2014 5:20 PM

While marketing and strategy groups get budget to use big data tools and high-end premium content subscriptions, most procurement groups are decidedly a little more low budget. They might want a Bloomberg-like cockpit, but they get a web browser. So, let’s work with that, and I will let you in on some dirty little secrets to find really good stuff out on the open web that I’ve learned over the years in procurement research. People will always thank me when I share these easy time-saving techniques with them – so I’m merely doing this no en masse. Yes, there’s a small fee to get into the sausage factory (i.e., this is for Plus members only), but I think you’ll find it’s worth it. Let’s proceed.

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Tips on Speaking to a Procurement Audience: Give Up the Slides, Please [Plus +]

- April 10, 2014 2:30 AM

PresentationPlus Whenever I have a big speech to give, I usually spend a few weeks preparing, or at least going through in my head, a planned outline. Like many presenters for whom public speaking did not come naturally to start, I’ve often found myself relying on slides to guide my talk. They’re a type of crutch, if you will. But in recent years, in the rare cases that I’ve been forced to present without PowerPoint, I’ve found the audience was far more engaged – probably something about a lack of 12 point Helvetica fonts and multiple takeaway arrows per slide, I suppose.

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