Tagged Content: PRO

Catalog Management: Vroozi, smartOCI and Enabling P2P as an ERP Extension

Catalog management is a Trojan horse of sorts. Inside complex ERP procurement environments, it can serve as a gateway to driving indirect and services spend under management as a foundation of a broader indirect procurement program (in certain cases without specialized e-procurement capabilities from P2P providers). But more important than simply extending ERP, catalog management occupies a curious space that sits between a buyer’s ERP environment – or more likely, multiple ERP environments – and supplier data. Part production information management, part configurator, part search tool, part stealth workflow enabler (in certain cases), catalog management is often misunderstood, yet it can bring significantly more value to procurement than most realize. As we continue our analysis of one approach to integrated catalog management, Vroozi’s smartOCI solution, Xavier Olivera, director and lead P2P analyst, expands his analysis and explores the benefits of catalog management independently and as a surround strategy for ERP procurement.

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Catalog Management to the Rescue! Vroozi’s smartOCI Extends ERP Into Indirect Spend Without P2P

Most companies have a wide range of technology solutions that support their purchasing function (e.g., e-procurement, spend analysis, contract management, supplier management, sourcing, etc.). In many cases, typical Fortune 500 procurement organizations have invested in multiple solutions in a single area. (Yes, the myth of a single integrated suite is greatly overrated even in cases when a firm deploys a single suite). But one area where many organizations standardize on a single provider or fail to fully make the right set of investments is catalog management, which is more often the case in North America. In this Spend Matters PRO research brief, Xavier Olivera, director and lead P2P analyst, explores Vroozi’s smartOCI solution and how a robust catalog management approach and buying front-end can extend ERP procurement capability into the indirect area without necessarily having to use a specialized e-procurement or P2P toolset.

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Getting the Most From Consulting Firms and Engagements – The Evolution of the Operations, Procurement and Sourcing Consulting Market (Part 4)

- January 26, 2015 3:06 AM | Categories: Analysis, Services and Indirect Spend, Sourcing

Today we wrap up our "Evolution of the Operations, Procurement and Sourcing Consulting Market" PRO series, written by Jason Busch, founder and managing director, and Pierre Mitchell, chief research officer. In this installment, Jason and Pierre share the best strategies to get the most from consulting firms in the current climate of the procurement and operations areas. They share a number of best practices they have observed by “smart” consumers of consulting services.

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Becoming a Smarter Services Customer – The Evolution of the Operations, Procurement and Sourcing Consulting Market (Part 3)

- January 22, 2015 2:45 AM | Categories: Analysis, Sourcing

In Part 3 of our series examining the evolution of operations, procurement and sourcing consulting, we turn our attention to maximizing value and becoming a smarter services customer. This topic is especially critical when practice utilization (percentage of hours billed as a percent of total available hours of employee bench capacity) is near all-time highs given the current market conditions where purse strings have been slightly loosened to execute the backlog of post-recession activities (e.g., ERP upgrade projects, procurement training, "souring wave n+1" activity, etc.). Previously in this series, Chief Research Officer Pierre Mitchell and Founder and Managing Director Jason Busch explored growth rates within firms, the battle for consulting talent, the rise of new practice areas as well as threats and opportunities for the sector.

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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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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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The Evolution of the Operations, Procurement and Sourcing Consulting Market (Part 2 – Threats and Opportunities)

- January 14, 2015 2:55 AM | Categories: Procurement, Sourcing

The management consulting market for procurement, sourcing and related services has grown dramatically in the past 5 years (in the first installment in this series, we share our market growth analysis, along with key trends in 2014). But unlike the numbers, the news (beneath the surface) is not entirely positive. Granted, while from a practice revenue and growth perspective, it is difficult to argue with anything but the notion that we are living in the “best of times,” if you're an insider in the operations, procurement and sourcing consulting market, the actual 2015 reality brings with a number of threats as well. In this multi-part Spend Matters PRO series, Jason Busch and Pierre Mitchell consider the evolution of the operations and procurement consulting market and how clients can focus on getting the maximum value from their services partners. Today, they focus on threats and opportunities in the procurement consulting market for 2015 and beyond.

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The Evolution of the Operations, Procurement and Sourcing Consulting Market (Part 1 – A High CAGR Is Potentially Misleading)

- January 13, 2015 2:31 AM | Categories: Procurement, Sourcing

If looked at from a superficial perspective, the procurement and sourcing consulting landscape looks similar to how it did 5 years ago. The firms that dominate the sector are largely the same. Boutiques also remain in the mix, but beneath the surface, there are highly significant changes that have been causing a material shift in the market. Large incumbents are acquiring niche provider and are now looking to build a broader spectrum of technology, managed services, integrated market intelligence, advanced analytics and defensible vertical capabilities to go on the offense. In this multi-part Spend Matters PRO series, Jason Busch and Pierre Mitchell consider the evolution of the operations and procurement consulting market and how clients can focus on gaining the maximum value from their services partners.

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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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Supply Risk Management 2015 (Part 2): Best Practices

- January 8, 2015 2:59 AM | Categories: Supply Chain, Supply Risk, Supply Risk Management

As our examination of supply risk management best practices for 2015 continues, we turn our attention to measuring supply risk scoring in business terms, incorporating variation and volatility into risk models (beyond just structural complexity), showing risk graphically and fully considering supply risk management as an embedded process. This 3-part Spend Matters PRO brief, authored by Chief Research Officer Pierre Mitchell, provides an outlook on how best to manage supply risk programs in 2015. The lessons he presents are based on his experience working with and learning from best practice procurement and supply chain organizations – and academics in the field.

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Supply Risk Management 2015: Lessons from Leaders

- January 7, 2015 2:25 AM | Categories: Supply Risk, Supply Risk Management

Supply risk is not a new topic, nor will it be going away anytime soon. But, it's no time to be complacent. In this 3-part Spend Matters PRO research brief, Spend Matters Chief Research Officer Pierre Mitchell provides his outlook on how best to manage supply risk programs in 2015, based on lessons from leaders. We begin today with how to think globally and implement locally, aligning risk and reward and how to create and track the right set of metrics and benchmarks.

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