Procurement News from the US – Weekly Round-Up

The Declaration of Independence, Procurement style.

Spend Matters: Procurement Independence Day -- Today is the Fourth of July in the United States. A holiday to celebrate US freedom from British oppression -- the day our founding fathers risked being hanged by signing the Declaration of Independence (yes we know, the Scots and others are still fighting the battle we were successful in winning two hundred years ago; we wish 'em luck, also at beating the Brits on the rugby and soccer/football fields). Joking aside, we've written quite a bit about the Fourth of July in the past (hereand here). We won't bore you with them again here on a day that should be spent with family rather than reading Spend Matters. But we will take a moment to share a few lines of our "Procurement Declaration of Independence."

Two new Compass Research papers this week: Direct Materials Sourcing and Cloud Integration (and a bonus webinar!)

New Research: A Direct Materials Guidebook -- Six Key Principles for the Manufacturing Road Ahead -- Spend Matters and MetalMiner are excited to announce the publication of our most recent research brief covering the direct materials procurement marketplace: A Direct Materials Guidebook – Six Key Principles for the Manufacturing Road Ahead. In this Spend Matters Perspective, authored by Jason Busch, Managing Director Research, and Thomas Kase, Principal Analyst, we suggest that any future evolution of direct procurement will undoubtedly build on the significant shifts we've seen in global manufacturing in the past two decades. In this next stage of growth, Spend Matters believes technology will catch up to current market requirements. Join Jason Busch and Thomas Kase for a webinar on this topic on July 17 from 11am-12pm Central.

New! Procurement Systems Integration Within the Enterprise: Exploring Integration In The Cloud -- P2P systems integration is one of the top enablers (and requirements) for driving lasting eProcurement impact and change. Yet precious little research focus has been devoted to it in the past, until now, with our latest Spend Matters Perspective: Procurement Systems Integration Within the Enterprise: Exploring Integration In The Cloud. On the highest level, one of the side effects of the rising stature and role of procurement in the past decade is that the function is no longer a purchasing silo of its own. As a result, procurement -- both teams and systems -- is interfacing with more systems as it expands its role and reach across the enterprise.

Preparing for the “new commodity normal.”

Procurement and Supply Chain: Tips and Tricks to Prepare for Commodity Volatility (Part 1) -- If there is an "Ariba" of commodity management, it's Triple Point Technologies. While there are many specialist commodity management software providers with expertise in given markets (e.g., Brady for metals), Triple Point has the widest cross-industry footprint. It also has invested more than its rivals in trying to expand the commodity management pie by educating procurement audiences across CPG, food and now, industrial manufacturing, in addition to continuing to sell into trading functions. As part of this education effort, Triple Point's blog is one place to turn to for insight into how commodity risk management approaches can play just as great a part in the manufacturing world as the financial trading community. (Part 2 here)

Our final post in a series on Next Level Purchasing (and procurement certification in general).

Next Level Purchasing: Growing Upstart Targets Global Procurement Certification/Community (Part 4) -- When considering the niche that Next Level Purchasing is attempting to fill in procurement education and training, it's important to realize that procurement skills are falling short of what organizations need to fully address the demands placed upon a function that is often running leaner than ever. Spend Matters' research on the topic from 2008 suggested that fewer than 10% of the procurement workforce in North America has a procurement certification or has gone through a formal degree program in supply management or a related field (e.g., operations research, supply chain management). This number likely hasn't climbed more than a percentage point or two in the past couple years. Add to this that for many, on-the-job training is insufficient, and it becomes clearer why certifications may seem attractive.

With that, I’m off to prepare for the Chicago Sprints regatta this weekend. I’ll be coaching five boats and competing in a mixed Masters 8+ (rowing Port as a tried and true Starboard, mind you). It’s not quite Henley, but it’ll do!

- Sheena Moore

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