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The Market Speaks: Procurement practitioner requirements and the tech vendor response — Globality

09/28/2023 By

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Spend Matters constantly updates its understanding of the state of the procurement tech market via RFIs for our SolutionMap dataset, vendor interviews, global event attendance and product demos with the aim of keeping tech-selection decision makers ahead of market trends. But we also endeavor to grow our understanding of the wants and needs of the customers using that tech – the practitioners.

In one series of interviews this summer and through to the end of the year, we are talking to vendors about what their customers really want from them and how they are proposing to address those needs. In a second one, we are talking to the end users about their expectations and requirements.

This week we spoke with Keith Hausmann, Chief Customer Officer for Globality.

What are the challenges and asks of your customers?

What we are hearing loudest is that, due to the ongoing economic uncertainty, our customers are continually being asked to do more with less resources and to reduce their headcount even further. They are asking us to help transform their buying models so that newer-looking, leaner sourcing teams can work more efficiently with the limited resources that they now have while adding more strategic value to the business.

Secondly, our customers all have a degree of spend that is currently not properly managed and could be sourced more competitively and transparently. There is general dissatisfaction with the level of spend that is competitively sourced across the business — on average just 30%-50% — and a strong desire to increase that percentage to 70%-80%, driving not only savings through increased supplier competition but also diversifying the supply base and identifying new, best-fit alternatives.

We also find that mature procurement functions have quite specific category strategies around preferred suppliers, level of supplier competition and who from the business should be involved in a sourcing project depending on its size and risk. Our customers are looking for a way to operationalize these strategies in a hands-free digital manner, moving away from their outdated, manual spreadsheet and email-driven processes to a seamless, collaborative, real-time interface.

The other challenge we are hearing more and more about is — surprise! — generative AI. Procurement, like all functions, is being asked if and how it is using generative AI to deliver the increased productivity and efficiencies that CEOs, CFOs and other corporate leaders are reading and hearing about daily.

Are you witnessing a shift in demand towards more ESG and supply chain risk capabilities?

More and more of our customers are setting out to ensure a minimum percentage of their spend goes to diverse suppliers, and they are looking for a quick and efficient way to find qualified, diverse providers capable of meeting their indirect spend needs.

They want a sourcing model that not only identifies those qualified diverse suppliers but ensures that they are included on the shortlist for opportunities, as is the policy at several of our customers.

What is Globality doing to address these customer challenges?

Our autonomous sourcing platform allows procurement teams to achieve more, even with reduced headcount, by enabling business stakeholders to self-serve with guardrails and processes procurement put in place. For example, one of our US-based Fortune 500 customers is running multiple complex sourcing projects with a team of fewer than 10 people, work that otherwise would require 50 to manage.

We are focused on providing an intuitive, consumer-like interface that business stakeholders love using, which enables our customers to bring more of their spend under management, deliver immediate cost savings and lead to better business outcomes. BT Group and Santander have each placed more than $4 billion of spend through our platform over the past 12 months with their procurement teams freed up to focus on the most strategic aspects of the strategic procurement process. And UK-based Fortune 500 enterprise Tesco became the first European retailer to adopt autonomous sourcing earlier this year, enabling its procurement and business stakeholders to execute the source-to-contract process in a much more collaborative, agile, efficient manner, with procurement increasingly operating as a key business partner.

We are also helping our customers communicate to their CEOs, CFOs and other corporate leaders how generative AI has a great business use case within procurement, particularly around indirect spend, helping the whole enterprise to scope complex needs quickly and easily, as well as providing deep category expertise and intelligent insights throughout the sourcing journey. A unique opportunity currently exists for procurement to move away from being seen as a transactional function to one that leads the way in driving new business value — and we want to help all our customers seize it with both hands.

Many thanks to Globality. For deep, granular analysis of Globality consult Spend Matters vendor analysis as part of its Insider membership.

That concludes our ‘vendor-response to customer challenges’ series. Find the whole set here:
The Market Speaks … (And look out for Part 2 of the series focusing on the end user, coming shortly.)

To help you with your tech selection challenges, Spend Matters TechMatch helps you understand how the capabilities you need match your technology provider.

The Market Speaks
Digital Procurement