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Procurement Digitalization Has 2 approaches: All or Some

In an increasingly digital world where manual processes are transformed into bits and bytes, the challenge for Procurement Organizations is to stay relevant. Many companies struggle to decide whether a dedicated Procurement function is “good to have” or a “must have,” according to Rahul Devarakonda, Beroe Inc.’s head of product.

Procurement Digitalization” promises to offer an abundance of solutions to multiple problems. But the pressing question is: Can Procurement teams achieve the much-needed centrality if they jump onto the Digitalization bandwagon?

While expectations are high, so are the complexities in implementing digitalization in one’s organization. For example, questions could range from as simple as “where to start” to as complex as “what mix of solutions can bring in more value to operations.” There are solutions in the market that envisage complete overhaul of processes and systems, but Procurement Organizations also can take an alternate approach, which uses a plug-and-play model to digitize certain processes that otherwise consume too much time and effort.

Industry experts weigh in with their assessments for when to do a vast Digitalization switch and when it makes sense to digitalize parts of a company's operations.

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For Hospitals Only (Part 2): How an Internal Marketplace Drives Hospital Standards

healthcare

More often than not, procurement projects that finally make the docket address problems that staff have been complaining about for a long time. Therefore, having a detailed understanding of the problem is essential. To get there, cross-functional input must be solicited from staff representatives of all affected organizational layers throughout the system design and implementation phases.

One thing that successful change management efforts have in common is that they are typically driven by a combination of front-line workers and back-line executives. When this happens, success if virtually assured. When it doesn’t, well, the odds aren’t great, but sometimes we get lucky (according to statistics, about 46% of the time).

In Part 1 of our series on Prodigo Solutions, we talked about the company’s dedication to the needs of hospital procurement organizations and how it has allowed Prodigo to achieve dominant status in its market. From a change management perspective, Prodigo provides a shining example of how desired results can be achieved when we focus ourselves on doing certain things particularly well. As we know, when we don’t, pushback is a certainty.

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A Simplified Approach to Indirect Spend Management

digital

The consequences of poor indirect spend management can be costly — overspending, lack of visibility and control, and too many suppliers doing too little. Having poor visibility into your indirect categories means you have no real understanding of your actual spend, cash flow and working capital status. This can lead to an inability to apply cash to the business when needed. Additionally, CFOs often significantly underestimate indirect expenditures. The reality is the lack of visibility into what you are spending day-to-day can be up to 40% of your total spend. Here are four steps to get control of your indirect spend.

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The Rise of Conversational UI: How Chatbots are Used in Purchase to Pay

Interaction between humans and computers has progressed rapidly in recent decades; I almost laugh looking back at how recent it was that we did not even have mobile devices and remembering the clunky first versions that did not have anything close to the functionality of smartphones today. But as we’re all hyper aware now — computers and smart devices are ingrained in how we live, work and play, so it’s no surprise that our relationship with technology is going to the next level with innovations like virtual assistants and chatbots.

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With High Intensity Hurricanes the New Normal, Procurement Must Plan Ahead or Suffer the Consequences

As the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season draws to a close at the end of November, it’s a good time to reflect on how one of the most disruptive periods of the year is affecting supply chain risk planning. If there were one lesson for procurement to learn from the past season, it’d be this: Hurricanes are becoming more powerful and lasting longer. The last several years of intense storms (think Harvey, Irma, Maria, Florence and Michael) are not anomalies but what appears to be the new normal. Businesses must therefore take stock of the new standards for natural disasters and prepare accordingly — or risk being caught off-guard.

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6 Ways to Leverage AI in Procurement Today

cognitive computing

Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most hyped-up topics in business right now. Gartner has included a number of AI applications in their 2018 Hype Cycle for most important emerging technologies. To take matters further, Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai recently said he expects AI to become more important for humanity than even fire or electricity.

Almost every week we hear of new ways AI revolutionizing business practices, but where does this leave procurement? The good news is, if your procurement organization is ready for digital, it’s ready for AI. Here are six concrete ways you can get started.

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Spend Analysis Requires Human Expertise for Data Optimization, Data Visualization

From recent conversations during this fall conference season, it’s clear many procurement teams are still struggling with poor-quality spend data. Combined with the challenges of data lakes, corporate changes from mergers and acquisitions, and an overall pressure to get more savings year over year, procurement leaders are finding it difficult to align their talent and technology strategies for their digital transformation efforts.

Whether it be companies in the market for spend visibility for the first time or those looking to focus on spend analysis and visibility to engage digital transformational efforts, organizations will, for now, still need to get the basics of spend analysis right with human interaction and expertise combined with innovative technologies that will evolve and improve over time.

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For Hospitals Only: Prodigo’s Dedication to its Core Market Continues to Pay Off

Often referred to as “Amazon-like” or the “storefront” application in a P2P suite, Prodigo Solutions’ centerpiece solution is a client-branded, internal marketplace developed exclusively for hospital use. Known as ProdigoMarketplace and complemented by other specialized applications also purpose-built just for hospitals, everything about Prodigo reveals its unmistakable healthcare pedigree. Prodigo’s sole dedication to the needs of hospitals is distinguished and has helped establish the company’s dominance, now boasting half of the nation’s largest and most recognizable health system brands as customers. Prodigo also is one of healthcare’s largest Marketplaces by spend under management — having transformative financial impact on its customers’ supply chain practices and operations.

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Driving Adoption Through More Effective E-Procurement Change Management

Accenture

Change management, as a business discipline, dates back to the 1960s. Despite steady growth, dozens of “breakthrough” discoveries and countless books on the topic, the practice of change management hasn’t been very successful. According to McKinsey & Company, only about 30% of change management initiatives are successful in achieving their intended business outcomes. How should finance and procurement leaders who seek to drive adoption for e-procurement platforms regard change management? As John Hu, Shelby’s vice president of client services, is fond of saying, “change management isn't a project workstream, it’s the entire project.” There are numerous theoretical frameworks for enterprise change management. These can be helpful references for understanding the challenges and principles for managing change in today’s business environment. However, trying to apply any of these models to the practice of rolling out your procurement transformation initiative won’t get you very far. The need for a purpose-built approach: Conventional enterprise change management approaches are too generalized to address e-procurement adoption challenges. Our latest e-book, E-Procurement Change Management Strategy, offers a six-step, purpose-built framework for e-procurement change management that can be adapted to fit the needs of organizations with different requirements, cultures and business objectives.

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Create a Perfect E-Procurement World with Advanced Technology

digital

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.

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Can the New NAFTA Fix the Low Milk Price Problem in the U.S.?

diary cow deaths

Since the start of 2017, U.S. milk prices have declined 27%. Concerns over international trade and an oversupply of milk have put downward pressure on prices. Global trade tensions have slowed demand for U.S. exports, and a weakened Euro has stimulated demand for European dairy instead. Meanwhile, milk production has been increasing, driven by favorable weather and pasture conditions, and continuous improvement in farming methods. This is a concern for U.S. dairy farmers whose margins and profits have been squeezed by low prices. However, in light of the recent renegotiation of the NAFTA deal, is there a ray of light for the U.S. dairy industry?

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Building the MSP of the Future: The GRI Approach

digital business transformation

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.