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Ivalua NOW Americas 2024: Procurement [Re]Imagined


Last week, the Spend Matters team attended Ivalua’s annual Americas conference in Miami, Florida. Located at the Faena Forum, the two-day event featured keynotes, breakout sessions, solution demonstrations, partner/sponsor booths and more.

The first Ivalua NOW conference of 2024 took place in Versailles in March; we covered it here. Both conferences were titled ‘Procurement [Re]Imagined’ and highlighted the impact of AI (especially generative AI) on daily procurement tasks.

Overview of Ivalua NOW Americas 2024

The event followed a similar structure to that of the EMEA Ivalua NOW conference. It was a hybrid event, meaning that certain keynotes and breakout sessions were broadcasted live for those who were unable to attend in person.

David Khuat-Duy, Ivalua’s CEO and founder, began Thursday morning’s agenda with a company update as well as some commentary on generative AI. He emphasized the importance of a unified S2P platform and how genAI can improve regular processes without sacrificing security.

As we wrote in our recap of the EMEA Ivalua NOW conference, the company now has 950 employees, over 2,000 certified consultants, and collected over $180 million in 2023 revenue. Khuat-Duy also noted that Ivalua was profitable in 2023.

Next, Clinton Hazziez, System VP, Supply Chain Operations and Strategic Sourcing of Baylor Scott & White Health, the largest non-profit healthcare organization in Texas, spoke about his organization’s digital transformation journey. Hazziez illuminated how the healthcare industry optimizes its supply chain. Hazziez spoke about how his company was dealing with industry headwinds (declining revenue, reimbursements, consolidation of payers, etc.) in a saturated market.

To combat these pain points, the organization decided to embark on a digital transformation journey beyond supply chain (finance, clinical, etc.). Some of the key supply chain transformation pillars discussed were commercial excellence, vendor risk management, and systems (disparate point systems). The process has allowed Baylor Scott & White Health to reallocate procurement resources to more pressing areas such as analytics, sourcing and contract management, and program management.

Hazziez was asked about the core technology capabilities that made an actual difference for his organization, and he highlighted user-friendly environments to promote high adoption and integrations (ease of integration, bidirectional integrations, complementary to all systems, etc.). These areas coincide with what we often hear from practitioners. According to Hazziez, adoption is key so that organizations “don’t need a data scientist to issue a PO.”

Hazziez also touched on the industry-/company-specific components that have been helped by technology and how integrations, keeping up to date with suppliers/contracts etc., allow for more customized health care (e.g., making sure a surgery is done differently based on patient body types, age, etc. and allowing surgeons/doctors to see the available options).

Baylor Scott & White Health is also looking to leverage AI to optimize its operations and create its own genAI use cases. So far, the company has focused on implementing genAI-based RFI solutions. By leveraging Ivalua’s ability of customers to build its own genAI use cases, Baylor Scott & White Health and other organizations with unique, industry-specific applications can leverage Ivalua’s new genAI offerings as needed.

After Hazziez, Nick Traboulay, Supply Chain Systems Transformation Principal at Leidos, spoke about his organization’s experience with Ivalua. As a government contractor that operates in the intersection between engineering and technology, Leidos’ implementation of Ivalua has taken place in several phases to ensure adoption throughout the company.

Prior to Ivalua, Traboulay noted that Leidos relied on Excel, Word, Sharepoint, PowerBI, etc. for everyday procurement tasks. The company wanted a fully integrated software solution built on a single data model, which is what led it to Ivalua.

Traboulay’s insights were largely related to ensuring adoption across different departments and types of users. He stated that at Leidos, one needs to go beyond just establishing the ROI potential and also address pain points. As a result, the Ivalua investment was announced internally very early, and it was supplemented by internal blog posts and regular status updates to build excitement and emphasize how this would benefit the company on a daily basis.

Adoption was also encouraged by focusing on the users’ specific perspectives. Traboulay helped make training materials that were matched to existing learning preferences (live training, PowerPoint, on-demand videos, etc.). He utilized real-world examples and tailored the training to each department. Traboulay even leveraged AI tools to write scripts and reached out to external users (suppliers) via a ChatGPT-drafted email to encourage adoption on all fronts.

The first phase of Leidos’ implementation has been upstream (sourcing, supplier management, contract management). Next year, Leidos plans to implement e-procurement, with invoice and payment coming in 2026. In the future, they may also consider more advanced/growing areas such as risk management.

Overall, the conference was successful and delivered interesting conversations. For instance, Ivalua customers seem more excited about generative AI than other customers we have spoken with, perhaps due to the existing Ivalua use cases. We look forward to continuing our coverage of Ivalua, including Vendor Analysis updates of both S2C and P2P. Stay tuned for more in the near future!