IQN’s Chicago Community Event Panel on SOW and Services: There’s Gold in Them There Hills

Chicago kenmc3/Adobe Stock

I recently joined an IQN Community Event as a panel discussion participant in the Windy City (where those who stayed on a day longer found themselves experiencing pouring rain and gale force winds). Now, flying back home to Northern California — the locus of the great American gold rush and since then many wildfires — I am compelled to memorialize the event by adding a few entries in my captain’s log.

The discussion of the red-hot topic of statement of work (SOW) and services management was ignited by our panel, which included Dave Elliott-Smith (SOW global practice consultant at KellyOCG) and moderator Brian Hoffmeyer (senior vice president, strategic marketing at IQNavigator), and fanned by audience discussion. But it was far from extinguished when we left.

Most anyone in the contingent workforce management and services procurement space knows that SOW spend under management has been growing at very high rates in past years and is at or beyond the point of exceeding the level of contingent labor/staff augmentation spend under management. And contingent workforce/services procurement organizations are beginning to look at the management of SOW or services spend as a (a) big upside opportunity (reduce costs and risks) as well as (b) significant challenge (how to make it happen).

KellyOCG is ramping up its global practice that enables organizations to develop effective programs to manage SOW/services activities, spend and supply chains to achieve significant cost and risk reduction benefits. IQN is extending its technology solution to support the same. And Spend Matters is increasing its focus on researching services and services procurement innovation and technology. All obviously not a coincidence.

By scratching the surface of the topic in our brief panel discussion, it was certainly clear that there is much to be done and much that can be achieved in such a vast multicategory reservoir of spend that has barely been brought under management, let alone tapped for cost and compliance risk reductions. Organizations need to prepare themselves for what will be a long voyage, with many destinations arrived at through some unchartered waters. In some ways, it is a bit of a gold rush, but every organization can stake its own claim and strike gold, if it only it takes the journey.

Don’t worry: There will be plenty of partners to help with experience-based know how, digging tools and maps.

As you ponder or begin to plan your journey to riches, I’ll leave a few small nuggets (some contributor articles and a research paper) from the Spend Matters Contingent Workforce and Services Procurement content portal to get you ready to go all in.

The mother lode lies ahead.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of SOWs (Part 1): The Good
May 18, 2016 | Michelle Peterson, KellyOCG

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of SOWs (Part 2): The Bad
June 2, 2016 | Charles Pankratz, KellyOCG

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of SOWs (Part 3): The Ugly
June 15, 2016 | Joseph LaRussa, KellyOCG

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of SOWs (Part 4): SOW Mastery
June 29, 2016 | Barb Lauer, KellyOCG

The Critical Ingredient of a Successful SOW Program: The SOW Operations Professional
June 10, 2016 | Guest Contributor

The Shift from Labor to Services Procurement (Part 1): ‘The What’
June 17, 2016 | Andrew Karpie

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