The Procurement Analysts’ Reel Episode 5 – An Interview with Pierre Mitchell

As we explained in our post recently, we are running a series of podcasts we have named The Procurement Analysts' Reel – in them we speak to each of our analysts about their areas of expertise, their thoughts on current market trends within their procurement domains, and find out a little bit more about them generally.

We thought it was about time our readers got to know our analysts better to understand who is behind our vendor and tech research and analysis and contributes to the famous SolutionMap vendor and platform benchmark rankings. The analysts have a deep understanding of the procurement market which can help procurement practitioners and leaders with their business challenges.

Here's Pierre:

In a nutshell:

Pierre Mitchell is chief research officer at Spend Matters covering source-to-pay, procurement services and procurement tech in general.

Pierre’s background and current role at Spend Matters

Pierre has about 30 years of experience in procurement and supply chain immersion, beginning his career in management consulting, where he was introduced to strategic sourcing. He then moved into the IT industry, working at AMR Research as their first procurement technology analyst. It was there that he met Jason Busch (Spend Matters founder). Following a career with the Hackett Group he joined Spend Matters and focused on digital supply management.

He now has several roles at Spend Matters. As chief research officer he collaborates with external firms and structures survey-based research. He leads Spend Matters’ research on technology within the SolutionMap platform, building the market intelligence around all of the procurement technology providers. While the core of SolutionMap is vendor comparisons, it also uses the intellectual property in many other ways, such as developing diagnostic tools, ongoing practitioner advisory support, and helping private equity companies with due diligence. Pierre also serves as an analyst, currently leading in the contract management space.

What makes Pierre passionate about procurement?

Pierre believes procurement can act as a change agent. It touches countries all around the world, and all industries, and can “set the tone to ensure you are sourcing in a sustainable and ethical way.” As companies make choices between what they should focus on internally and what they should outsource, there is a dizzying array of great procurement solutions to choose from. Spend Matters, he says, gives a “method to the madness” and helps procurement organisations get the best value for their investments. Procurement, he believes, can deliver a large return on investment for an organisation.

What trends does Pierre observe in procurement technology, and what does the future hold?

Pierre believes the level of support for technology that can automate and digitise procurement processes is great. The more an organisation can free up time and remove costs, the more it can reinvest in higher-impact processes, receiving a greater return on investment. He sees procurement as a “semi-permeable boundary to the supply base,” and believes part of the competencies that procurement must develop are to help not only itself but to better serve the enterprise. For him, the future of procurement technology is less about automating an internal workflow and more about being “an intelligence provider,” helping the entire business evaluate upstream suppliers and better support customers and shareholders.

What does Pierre think people do not know about Spend Matters but should?

According to Pierre, Spend Matters and Solution Map are the market’s “best-kept secrets.” He believes the depth of intelligence around providers, digital procurement strategies and overall digital procurement transformation is “eye-opening.” Spend Matters helps navigate the overall digital procurement market as an organisation undertakes a digital transformation, providing insights into where an organisation should pave new grounds on innovation or where they should focus on tried-and-trusted tools. “We know not only the top providers in the market, but also the strategies and the best practices that can help an organisation through a broader transformation,” he says.

What trends and developments specific to Europe does Pierre observe? 

Pierre is involved in the Deloitte 2019 CPO study, and sees that Brexit and global trade wars loom large over the complexity and uncertainty of the markets. From a digital procurement standpoint, aside from political tensions, he has seen a lot of the newer and more innovative providers coming out of Europe, whether that be in sourcing optimisation, artificial intelligence or new source-to-pay players. He is interested in the specific functionalities that are important in supporting compliance requirements, if you “really want to get into the weeds, which we do, in SolutionMap,” he says.

Listen to the full podcast to get to know Pierre better.

Tune in next week for our interview with more of our analysts!

Voices (5)

  1. Reginald D Byrd:

    I think Pierre is a great drum major for the Procurement and Supply Chain profession. I have enjoyed his Spend Matters webinars for a long time. His presence at the ISM conferences has also been invaluable.not only as just a speaker but a practitioner of PSCM. It is great to engage him one on one and hear his passion for our craft.

    1. Pierre:

      Reggie,
      Thanks for the very kind words! It means a lot coming from you – who is out in the trenches making it happen every day. I hope that you are well sir. Please reach out anytime.
      P

  2. Michael Shaw:

    Spend Matters Solution Maps are much more comprehensive than other analysts quadrant approach. They are based on in depth research and a clear understanding of the procurement market and not influenced by how much money the vendors spend with the analysts.

    1. Carina Kuhl:

      Thanks for these kind words, Michael, much appreciated. The Spend Matters team has been working incredibly hard these past 2 years to establish SolutionMap and it’s great to see it get buy-in from the market. We did set out to challenge and improve upon the existing procurement software benchmark and tech selection models and, given the traction we’re getting from procurement practitioners to aid in their tech selection efforts, it seems we’re earning that trust.

    2. Pierre:

      Thanks Michael, I appreciate the shout out. The elves are busy here trying to stay on top of everything and keep the intelligence fresh and relevant!

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