Author Archives: Agatha Degasperi - Iasta Europe

Auction Award Best Practices

The success of your auction is not only limited to the results you obtain, but also to how smoothly the process runs. Too often, buyers are very communicative up until the auction runs and then forget about the vendors. For continued success and to increase your chances of having vendors take part in future e-sourcing projects, take into account the following suggestions when awarding your business: Vendors are informed that the lowest bidder does not automatically win the business. Nevertheless, … More

Crisis = Opportunity?

Being a “glass half full” kind of person, I’m always trying to look for a glimmer of light amongst the darkness, and maybe there is some despite the economic crisis? Well, a little trouble has been brewing in my country of residence, Belgium, this past month between Delhaize (one of the biggest supermarket chains in Belgium) and its supplier Unilever. The Delhaize Group was boycotting over 300 products from Unilever, which they claimed to be too expensive and too varied … More

Who says you can’t auction that???

Time and time again I hear people say that you can only really auction a commodity; something that is standard, simple – like a widget that doesn’t have too many service components. Well, if that’s the case then what have we been doing the past 10 years?? The European Leaders in Procurement magazine (Spring 2007 issue) had an article written by Bill Simpson (director of financial services managed accounts – Fujitsu Services) in which he addresses the topic of auctioning … More

Webcast Summary: “Bringing Contract Management into the 21st Century”

I took part in a webcast this week entitled “Bringing Contract Management into the 21st Century – 5 Principles Every Procurement Executive Should Know” sponsored by Procurement Leaders. It is quite clear that Contract Management is starting to add real value to companies. Problem is, too many are still stuck in old practices that result in a lack of visibility, control and inability to manage compliance. I thought it would be worthwhile to highlight some of the key takeaways from … More

Auction Award Best Practices

The success of your auction is not only limited to the results you obtain, but also to how smoothly the process runs. Too often, buyers are very communicative up until the auction runs and then forget about the vendors. For continued success and to increase your chances of having vendors take part in future e-sourcing projects, take into account the following suggestions when awarding your business: Vendors are informed that the lowest bidder does not automatically win the business. Nevertheless, … More

Who says you can only auction widgets???

Time and time again I hear people say that you can only really auction a commodity; something that is standard, simple – like a widget that doesn’t have too many service components. Well, if that’s the case then what have we been doing the past 10 years?? The European Leaders in Procurement magazine (Spring 2007 issue) had an article written by Bill Simpson (director of financial services managed accounts – Fujitsu Services) in which he addresses the topic of auctioning … More

Interview Part III – Key Benefits of e-sourcing

Q11: What were the key benefits of having implemented an e-sourcing solution and what would you say were the main lessons learned? A11: The initial key benefits achieved were: • The creation of a competitive environment for tendering all indirect expense contracts. • Simplification and standardization of the tender process. • Ability to track compliance to the Procurement Policy. • Provide buyers with tools to make better business decisions. On a more long term basis, by having created a knowledge … More

Interview Part II – Looking at Market Integrity

Q7: We had a few postings last year on e-sourcing Ethics/Market Integrity. I know that through some of the consulting support your organization received in the early stages of implementation, this was one of the key topics addressed. Can you comment on a few of the successes and failures when it came to ethics? A7: During the first auctions it became apparent that buyers where not necessarily inviting suppliers to whom they where prepared to award the business too. Their … More

Interview Part I: How to Successfully Implement e-Sourcing in a Global Retail environment

I recently sat down with a former Financial Controller of a Global Retailer to look back at his experience of implementing an e-Sourcing solution in Europe. This is the first in a 3 part interview. Q1: How/Why was the decision made to use e-Sourcing? A1: The initial decision to look at e-sourcing was made by Corporate. Reason for implementation in Europe was the creation of a competitive environment to tender all contracts related to indirect expenses. Focus on expense control … More

To use or not to use a preliminary price round?

In case you have not been asking yourself this question, here are a few reasons why you might want to begin… What is a preliminary bid round? This is a 1st round of pricing where suppliers are asked to enter their starting prices into the event anywhere from 2 weeks to a couple of days prior to taking part in an online bidding event. How does this benefit the buying organization? Ensures you have enough interest in the event (i.e. … More

Proper supplier training techniques

How to conduct a supplier training: Whenever possible, try to simulate a “real” event scenario. You can generally create copies of your original event to achieve this. Schedule a date and time when you will guide the supplier through the system. Leave a test auction available for a few days/weeks for suppliers who wish to continue practicing. Take them through the system in a logical sequence: o Logging on o Accessing event data o Important documents they need to be … More

Supplier Training – does it actually add any value ?

Numerous organizations tend to underestimate the value of training suppliers to take part in an e-sourcing event. Now, while supplier training may seem like a minor part of the entire e-sourcing process, it is actually a much more critical part of the process than most think – read on… What is supplier training? It’s the structured process of guiding a supplier through the tool(s) they will need to use in order to take part in an e-sourcing event, whether it … More

E-Sourcing Adoption and Buyer Training

Training is an integral part of introducing any new technology into an organization. Without it, large scale adoption will be slow and it will be nearly impossible to gain momentum around your corporate initiative. Many training programs are short lived and fail to generate interest because it is often approached incorrectly. Take into account the following steps and you will begin to see the true value that can be added through training: Determine if lack of adoption is really based … More

Online Reverse Auction Ethics – Part II

As a follow-up to Part I of unethical behavior during online auctions, I would like to point out a few other areas to watch out for to continue to ensure your organization’s success. 1) Internal Politics – What do I mean by this exactly? Basically, it means ensuring that every stakeholder is fully on board before initiating an online auction exercise. When you don’t have the complete buy-in of internal stakeholders, you risk sabotaging the event before it even starts. … More

Online Reverse Auctions and the Ethics surrounding them – Part I

Nothing makes me cringe more than when I hear buyers say: “I’m only inviting this supplier to the auction so it looks like I have more competition,” or “I have no intention of awarding the business to a new supplier, I just want them to help drive down my incumbent’s prices.” Hmmmm…, don’t know about you, but I think this presents quite the ethical dilemma. Many suppliers are already skeptical of online auctioning. If this type of process continues to … More