Process & Best Practice Content

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Create a Perfect E-Procurement World with Advanced Technology

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You get procurement; we get procurement; your end users don’t get procurement — and that’s exactly how it should be. A perfect world in e-procurement is enabling end users to get exactly what they need quickly, easily and in compliance with procurement policy without having to understand the intricacies of that policy, while also empowering procurement teams with the right digital capabilities to support strategic initiatives behind the scenes. That’s why I’m particularly excited about a host of new advanced technology that is making this perfect e-procurement world a reality for many companies.

Supplier Relationship Management Needs a Jolt of Technology, State of Flux’s SRM Summit Finds

Procurement has made significant strides in supporting supplier relationship management initiatives, but poor investment in technology could limit the potential benefits those programs can deliver in the years to come, according to State of Flux, a consulting firm that specializes in SRM and which held its annual SRM summit in Chicago on Oct. 23. Over the decade that State of Flux has monitored SRM maturity, procurement organizations have made considerable improvements in several areas — but not in adopting and using technology dedicated to SRM.

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Building the MSP of the Future: The GRI Approach

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Managed service providers (MSPs) failing to adapt to evolving enterprise standards for contingent workforce management risk becoming obsolete before the end of the decade. To win and keep business, MSPs of the future have to reposition themselves as experts, becoming trusted advisors offering a consultative approach built on modern contingent workforce strategies. What does this look like in practice? To find out, we take a look at how Geometric Results Inc. (GRI) is tackling the contingent workforce challenges of tomorrow and examining how its solutions and services align with the three characteristics of successfully evolving MSPs.

One of the Largest U.S. Universities Transforms AP Process through Automation

Imagine receiving 180,000 invoices a year from more than 50,000 vendors. Now imagine manually processing those invoices, one by one, using a paper-based operation. That was exactly the payables processing approach that the University of Florida, one of the largest universities in the nation, was operating under. Besides being a costly accounts payable process, the manual operation led to inaccuracies, loss of visibility into working capital and missed discounts.

Randy Staples, University of Florida’s associate controller, knew something needed to change. The state institution, serving 50,000 students, not only deserved something better, it deserved a best-in-class solution to its accounts payable issues, and Staples was determined to find it. His search led him to Corcentric, a provider of cloud-based financial process automation solutions.

Supplier Inclusion: Moving Beyond Spend to Measure Impact

Spend Matters welcomes this guest contribution from Brian Peters, Gilead Science’s director of procurement, and Steven Wuerth, Gilead Science’s senior manager for supplier inclusion and data analytics. 

Supplier diversity can have positive impacts on businesses and communities, but history suggests that program implementation has been difficult and, in some cases, borderline ineffective. In CVM Solutions’ 2018 State of Supplier Diversity Report, only 32 percent of respondents rated their supplier diversity programs as very effective,2 up 7 percentage points from their 2017 report3. This white paper by Gilead, a biopharmaceutical company with suppliers worldwide, contains reflections and learnings from our work to progress Gilead’s robust supplier inclusion program and to move beyond spend as “the” historical metric for supplier diversity so we can inspire and measure a broader impact.

Give Your Company a Personality Test Before Contracting for Services

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Gary Weiss, Flash Global's vice president of pricing, procurement and inventory management.

If your company were a human who could sit down and take a personality test, how would it score? Every company is like a person, with an individual temperament, strengths, weaknesses and quirks. Instead of "personality," though, we call it "corporate culture." Company culture affects every aspect of business operations, including employee recruitment, retention, development, business practices and vendor relationships. These five questions will help you define your corporate culture and find a service vendor who is a good fit.

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Lessons in Supplier Risk Management: How a Fire, Strike Lost the Auto Industry $500 Million

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With powerful hurricanes, earthquakes and wildfires threatening business operations and logistics, supply chain risk professionals across manufacturing industries usually have their hands full when it comes to mitigating disruptions. While the focus is usually on extreme weather, two operational disruptions at a supplier level in May and June revealed once again the full diversity of supply chain risks that can impact industrial production lines. In total, both events caused automotive and machinery supply chains more than $500 million in financial losses. These events are stark reminders of how a disruption at a single sub-tier supplier can ripple across manufacturing supply chains, impacting both upstream (sales) and downstream (production) operations.

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Procurement’s Spend Analytics Expertise is Untapped Strategic Lever for M&A success

Mergers and acquisitions provide a constant reminder of how business is always in flux and how executives need to meet the challenge of managing it. The first 100 days after a merger or acquisition often set the tone for the new entity and can influence long-term success. The environment is typically perfect for early procurement synergy capture, where when executed correctly, procurement optimization can improve EBITDA by an average of 10% to 30%, which is one reason why procurement is an untapped strategic lever for M&A. With effective spend analytics, organizations can better size up the savings based on the combined entities spend in key procurement categories and identify the commonality of suppliers across the merged entities and categories where spend is highly fragmented.

7 Tips: A Guide to Mastering Procurement Transformation

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Alex Saric, Ivalua's chief marketing officer.

As the role of procurement continues to evolve, a new approach is required. Leaders are transforming their organizations with a new mindset, new processes and new technology. Having worked with hundreds of leading organizations as they transform procurement, I’d like to share these seven tips for procurement managers that should serve them well.

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5 Essential E-Procurement Operations Capabilities

A wealth of information exists for companies contemplating the launch of an e-procurement platform. Yet learning about the capabilities needed to support ongoing operations has been extremely difficult — until now. Our latest eBook, E-Procurement Operations: Post-launch Capabilities to Ensure Your Success, provides insights on the capabilities needed for successful e-procurement operations.

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Working Capital Optimization: 3 Things to Avoid

In my last blog I outlined why you needed to reconsider your approach to working capital and why current programs are limited in their capabilities. In this blog I wanted to outline the things you need to avoid, or at the very least be aware of when approaching a working capital program.

A Big Green Idea: How Procurement Can Balance Profitability and Sustainability

External forces — from climate change to shifts in generational expectations — are causing businesses to take a hard look at the sustainability of their supply chains, and procurement organizations are uniquely positioned to effect environmental and financial change for the greater good, speakers said at Procurious’ 2018 Big Ideas Summit on Thursday in Chicago. In presentations from leading procurement professionals and supporting technology providers, speakers encouraged attendees to reconsider what was possible in the supply chain, including common misconceptions about sustainability.