Sourcing Content

Great acquisitions — and how technology helps us avoid bad buying

bad buying

Anyone who reads Spend Matters knows that technology makes a vital contribution to effective procurement these days. Not using it properly can also lead to problems, and in my new book, "Bad Buying — How Organisations Waste Billions Through Failures, Frauds, and F*ck-ups," I talk about some issues where technology can undoubtedly help us avoid problems.

ISS makes Spend Flexibility synonymous with Business Agility using Amazon Business

Amazon Business

ISS, a leading global workplace experience and facility management company, provides organizations with every facility solution they might require to support their own core activities. The key to being able to give its customers this total facilities management (TFM) service is ‘agility.’

The ability to respond quickly to customer demand, no matter how small, is something that can really differentiate a service provider in today’s market, and those that want to be a customer of choice must be able to do that. For the Procurement team, that requires sourcing excellence in all that they purchase.

The scale of the purchases involved for a multi-faceted FM outsourcing organization is huge. When a firm has a 100-year reputation of providing a quality service to maintain, and a breadth of services to offer grown out of strategic acquisitions, then standardization and compliance are paramount. One of the areas that historically generates many challenges for Procurement is that of tail spend. Ad hoc spending can go undetected, uncontrolled and become maverick. If a Procurement function wants complete vizibility, then it must also control the tail. Here's how ISS achieved this.

Exploring A/P and Procurement Best Practices at P&G: Lesson 9

The penultimate lesson in this P&G series is that companies should use the right techniques and tools to make trade-offs and optimize value. Collaborative sourcing tools are key in maximizing value based on diverse stakeholder needs. P&G is certainly familiar with this approach through their experience with epic combinatorial bidding projects (e.g., in truckload bidding with CombineNet). This is true for any type of spending and even for procurement’s own spend for technology and services –

Capital Equipment Sourcing: Pitfalls to Avoid

Procurement professionals who participate in the sourcing decisions for capital equipment often face several challenges: how to measure and derive value (especially when historical precedent is not available), how to gain the trust of the business stakeholders (especially the plant production and engineering ones), how to gain an “even place” at the negotiation table with the suppliers, etc. In attempting to address several or all of these challenges simultaneously, procurement professionals lose on more than one count. There are a few important pitfalls that need to be avoided to ensure success in the sourcing efforts of capital equipment.

Advanced Sourcing: A Direct Materials Case Example

The complexity of the supply chain was important, as the company had a history (and reason) to buy from both distributors and manufacturers in the past for these line items. Distributors offered the advantage (at a cost, of course) of bundling in freight and material storage/stockholding into the cost equation, along with better payment terms than going manufacturer direct.

Future Sourcing: Never Mind the Savings, Feel the Bids

What does saving a million dollars through a sourcing event really mean? Does it mean that you had a terrible contract last year? What about your supplier’s margins? Have you squeezed so much that your supplier will be coming back to re-negotiate in 3 months? Or worse, did they quote something different than what you expected? Or have underlying commodity prices moved so much that actually you’ve still left money on the table? And how implementable are these savings going to really be?

Future Sourcing: The End of the RFI

Spend Matters welcomes a guest post from Alan Buxton, COO of MarketMaker4. I see a lot of RFIs. And I have to admit that it […]

Sourcing Validation as a Best Practice

Spend Matters welcomes another guest post from Jeff Muscarella of NPI, a spend management consultancy focused on eliminating overspending on IT, telecom and shipping. In […]

Tackling Tail Spend and Spot Buys (Part 3)

In an analysis of technology for supporting tactical buying requirements, Hackett suggests the following elements to include: tools that review and analyze request patterns, user-friendly […]