Examining Current and Future Supply Chain Capacity – 10 Services Procurement Secrets (No. 7)

When Ford pursued a light-weighting program on its popular F-150 line of trucks, it had to understand both the existing and potential supply chain and capacity of the supply market (and different alternatives) years in advance of actual production. Yet when it comes to how companies consume and use third-party services, including contingent workforce management, few organizations formally translate and compare these forward-looking requirements to existing "supply."

This includes the services equivalent of a traditional make vs. buy analysis. Some organizations have the right resources in house to conduct these types of analyses – and if so, these resources should be "inventoried." Yet our findings suggest only a few firms practice strategic workforce planning. Procurement involvement in planning/budgeting is similarly low, and seeing procurement and HR working together to do both is a bigger rarity.

Procurement has its own issues (an overt focus on cost – read: price – vs. stakeholder outcomes). Category management often comes up short in services efforts as well. It is important to realize that contingent labor categories and classifications are also an "overlay," modeled across the spend taxonomy and often fungible (e.g., substituting a job requisition for a project-based initiative).

Regardless of internal limitations, don’t look back – look forward to model requirements.

This analysis is based on the Spend Matters research study, Applying Supply Chain Rigor to Contingent Workforce Management, which is available for limited period of time for free download in the Spend Matters research library.

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