Process & Best Practice Content

From Talent to Category Management: 4 Critical Development Areas for Procurement

Cybersecurity and access to critical talent are the top worries on CPOs’ minds, according to a Hackett Group report, The CPO Agenda: Expanding Procurement’s Influence Through Change and Innovation. The importance of cybersecurity is compounded by the EU’s Global Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which goes into effect May 25. In addition, cybersecurity and access to critical talent are also expected to be “high risk” in the near future by three quarters of procurement professionals who took part in The Hackett Group’s annual Key Issues Study.

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The State of the MSP Industry (Part 1): The Moment of Truth Has Arrived

Capgemini IBX Business Network

The MSP industry was born in the early 1990s. Enterprises were using more and more temporary labor, sourced without much control of cost and risk from a fragmented and opaque staffing industry. The very idea of an enterprise contingent workforce management program was a glimmer in the eye of CFOs. However, what had been a small problem was becoming a big one. To help businesses take control of their growing temporary labor use, MSPs, along with VMS technologies, stepped up to offer a solution to this problem. And since the 1990s, MSPs have served enterprises in these ways, delivering value primarily in the form of spend visibility, cost avoidance and reduction, and compliance enforcement. But what worked in the past in no longer simply enough for many businesses to justify their ongoing with relationships with MSPs.

How to Fix the Services Procurement Machine: A New Operating Model for Procurement and its Stakeholders

Spend Matters welcomes this contributed content from Stefan Zorn, vice president of customer success at Globality

The services procurement machine is broken, that much is certain. In the sourcing of high-value, complex services, cost consciousness has dominated where quality should have lead. Compulsive risk avoidance has allowed larger suppliers to capture the services market, excluding expert small and mid-sized providers from the selection process. But these misplaced priorities are far from the only reason for malfunction. The machine also broke because it hasn’t kept up with the rapidly changing, real-time global economy.

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5 Ways to Turn Your CFO’s Hate to Love

Imagine your typical CFO and CPO as a couple on Facebook. What do you think would their relationship status be? In my role at Sievo, I get to meet many leadership teams, and I find surprising similarities in boardroom dynamics. In Facebook terms, I would describe the typical relationship between a CFO and a CPO as “it’s complicated,” although I’ve come across some true “hate-hate” relationships, too. To put a positive spin on things, an emotionally charged relationship comes with some powerful energy to work with. No CFO-CPO relationship is completely unrepairable. It can take considerable time and effort, but it is all worth it.

Ask Spend Matters: Should You be Asking for Prices in the Supplier Prequalification Process?

finance

A North America-based reader from a professional services company recently wrote in with a question about asking for prices in the supplier prequalification process. She noted that procurement organizations in the public sector tend to ask for prices in the RFI process and then again in the formal RFQ process, whereas in the private sector they typically ask for prices in the RFI process only when they need to explore the market, saving price requests for the RFQ. Why does the public sector need an RFI with prices and then an RFQ, likely with the same prices? It seems inefficient to this reader, who wonders if there are some advantages to this approach that she is missing

The 6 Different Approaches to Buying and the Implications Each Holds

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Jonathan O'Brien, CEO of Positive Purchasing. 

Everyone has a choice about how they buy. Within companies, this could be determined by marketplace understanding, suppliers, future needs or how important a supplier is now and in the future. However, to understand what level of “buying power” you may have, it’s important to understand what type of buyer you are.

The Modern Contract: Connected Sets of Data

The purpose of almost every business contract is the same: to define the relationship and allocate risk. To effectively do the latter, supply chain managers must manage external risks and internal risks. But even considered separately, the point is that managing both kinds of risk is challenging. With a plate that full and interdependent, is it any wonder that contracts seem to create more operational friction than they’re worth? Why haven’t we figured out that we can’t adjudicate such variability?

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Beroe LiVE Poll: Spend Analysis Helps Trim Costs up to 5%

A procurement organization’s spend data usually resides in various databases and spreadsheets, often making it difficult to collate them into one coherent form for reporting purposes. However, procurement organizations can reap enormous benefits by bringing in much needed visibility into spend patterns. The importance of spend analytics has not gone unnoticed: 38% of procurement leaders had rated spend analysis as the most critical area to receive investment, according to Deloitte's 2016 Global CPO Survey.

By Prioritizing Contract Management, Procurement Can Drive True Digital Transformation

When it comes to long-term business planning, no one wants to be the next Kodak. That’s why companies large and small have embraced digital transformation as the path forward, hoping to accelerate growth, tap new markets and defend against competitive disruption. To drive digital transformation throughout the enterprise, companies will need to change the foundation on which their business process are built. And there is nothing more foundational or business critical to a firm than the contract. Prioritizing a strategic, digital-first approach to contract management, then, is a perfect way to begin a digital transformation.  

Haven’t Experienced a Significant Supply Chain Disruption in the Past Year? You’re Among the Lucky Few

supply chain disruption

Riskmethods recently commissioned a survey of more than 250 senior procurement executives around the world to see what strategies they’re using to manage risk in their supply chains, and the results were published in a white paper, Procuring Risk: The State of Risk Management and Mitigation in Today’s Global Supply Chain. The report found that avoiding significant supply disruptions is a top priority for senior procurement executives. These events are also not uncommon occurrences, as the vast majority of the survey respondents reported that they experienced at least one supply chain incident in the past 12 months that led to a significant disruption.

How Supplier Relationships are like Marriages: Lessons from ProcureCon Indirect East

Cultivating a meaningful relationship with your suppliers can be difficult at first, but when accomplished, the effort can produce positive and lasting growth opportunities for both companies. Taking steps to get to this point, though, takes care and mutual respect. Recently at ProcureCon Indirect East, I had the privilege of listening in to “Providing The White Glove Treatment To Your Suppliers,” a panel moderated by Joseph Richardson, president and CEO of Professional Purchasing Partners. During the session, Richardson challenged the audience to think beyond a simple checklist for managing their supplier relationships, encouraging them to instead seek a true change in mindset and a willingness to develop flexible for each supplier their company worked with.

When HR is in Charge of Your Recruiting, or Why a Hands-Off Approach Doesn’t Work

Meet Jane. Jane is the generalist HR business partner who supports procurement in your organization. Her management has decided that, in order to save money, Jane and her colleagues will now act as recruiters, reducing the need to pay external firms. As a procurement professional, you understand the concept and support an effort to save the company money. As a manager with open positions to fill, you sigh deeply and hope Jane knows the first thing about procurement. Internal recruiting is the new normal in many organizations looking to lower costs in the HR space. I’ve worked in and around indirect procurement long enough to recognize that this is one of those things where you can argue the merits, but you can’t argue the math. Cutting external recruiting all together equals 100% cost savings. High five! Except this approach can be a terrible idea.