Category Archives: Procurement Transformation

Procurement Transformation

Harmonizing Procurement and Payables

Hit all the right notes by getting procurement and payables in sync. One definition of harmony is the combination of simultaneously sounded musical notes to produce chords and chord progressions having a pleasing effect.  When music is in harmony, in an orchestra for instance, there are a number of tones that are produced creating an amazing distribution of sounds; collective sounds from multiple instruments that can not be reproduced on their own.

Servier finds platform technology a prescription for success.

Advanced procurement functionality meets agility on our cloud platform technology. Based in Suresnes, France, Servier is a leading pharmaceutical organization specializing in specific areas of development, including cardiovascular, oncology and rheumatology. Founded in 1954, Servier is present in 140 countries, with more than 21,000 employees, including close to 3,000 in R&D alone.

Business Process Management (BPM) v. workflow for procurement: What’s in a name?

Recently we explored the inconsistent interpretations surrounding what constitutes a platform v. suite v. disparate collection of point solutions. Lately, we’ve heard a little bit of the same term-swapping between business process and workflow.

A Prosperous Alliance: Procurement and Accounts Payable

I will never forget the first time I set foot in an Accounts Payable department. I was working as the lead consultant on a project to completely transform and rebuild a company’s procurement function. Everything was going exceptionally well: processes, reporting, technology implementation, and upskilling the current team. The CPO mentioned to me that I should stop in and introduce myself to the AP lead before the project moved much further forward. I dutifully did so – although when I … More

Think global: A worldwide procurement roll-out.

SIG Global Executive Summit next week, I had the chance to step back and take an objective look at what we’ve accomplished together, and how. I find it a really compelling procurement case study.

Platform-powered procurement transformation.

Approaches to expanding procurement value. In anticipation of our upcoming webinar with Spend Matters, Designing the Procurement Factory – Reinventing Procurement Through a Platform, I want to share some initial thoughts around the platform concept. For me, the main difference between a Platform as a Service (PaaS) and a Software as a  Service (SaaS) is about the capability of the platform to expand value at any time, using interconnected proprietary solutions. A perfect example is a company most people in … More

Procurement Process Shape Shifting

In Post One and Post Two we defined the most common procurement technology terms and explored what the various combinations of those terms mean. In this final post we take a look at the changing nature of our profession, and how to describe and comprehend it.

Procurement Technology Word Math

In my previous post, I defined seven of the most common procurement technology terms: cloud, platform, digital, solution, point solution, suite, and legacy system/solution/suite. They are commonly misused or misinterpreted, a fact that (while completely understandable) makes it difficult to have clear conversations about the differences and benefits of available procurement technology.

A Modern Glossary of Procurement Technology Terms

Procurement technology has changed a lot over the last few decades. The terminology we use to describe the technology we have today versus the technology we want/need in the future, or are reading about in industry literature, has changed as well. Unfortunately, even the most common terms in our field are used to imply a variety of applications and functionality, but often with no clear definition.

Compliance advice for those who herd cats

Procurement teams facing the constant challenge of measuring and enforcing contract compliance may shudder at the thought that December 15th was National Herding Cats Day. We put a contract in place, and they buy from someone else. We establish a process, and they do whatever they like. It can be infuriating. But, if we approach our internal “cats” with the right attitude, they also present us with unique opportunities to improve procurement’s performance, impact, and influence. Here is some advice … More

The Accelerating Rise of Cloud Platforms

A recent stat quoted in a CPO Rising guide titled “The Trends (and Benefits) of Cloud-Based Technology Adoption: CPOs Take Notice” is telling: cloud platform adoption has grown by 37.5% over the past few years, up over 14% between 2014 and 2015 alone. “Chief Procurement Officers love ‘going to the cloud’ because it allows them to focus on what is most important to them: automating and repeating processes, scaling resources, and driving greater value through greater volume.” — CPO Rising Procurement … More

Concentric Supplier Risk Management

Today, executives in all functions and lines of business are driven to create shareholder value. Nothing can destroy the perceived value of an investment faster than negative press, which can do irreparable damage to a brand. In some cases, the cause of the criticism may not even be due to a company’s own actions, but rather those of their suppliers (or suppliers’ suppliers). When a supply chain extends across the globe, procurement may have to extend the scope of their … More

Big Data, predictive analytics and prescriptive analytics will drive future enterprise performance.

What value does the Determine Cloud Platform add? How can its Big Data offering assist buyers? And what advantages are offered by the predictive and prescriptive analytics developed by Determine? In mid-September, I was interviewed about recent and forthcoming developments of Determine’s Cloud Platform Source-to-Pay and Contract Management solutions, which cover the entire finance procurement process. The original interview appeared in the French procurement magazine, Décision-Achats. What fundamentally distinguishes you from your competitors? What would you say is the main … More

e-Procurement Open Lab Conference: “Discovering the e-Procurement of tomorrow.”

At the Salon Solutions trade show in Paris on September 21, I shared with attendees Determine’s vision for the future of Procurement Information Systems. What follows is a summary of my key points. Procurement Solutions and Organizations, after some twenty years of development, are now reaching maturity. Even though implementation levels are different from one continent to another, it is still possible to consider what the future might hold. Procurement Solutions will bring three main areas of innovation to Procurement … More

Increasing Visibility to Build Understanding

Procurement needs to be familiar with their company’s spend and purchasing habits on a very detailed level. This requires a combination of spend analysis, contract reviews and stakeholder interviews. What they must remember, however, is that procurement does not just need to increase visibility for the sake of their own understanding, but rather to increase the understanding of all decision makers in the organization. This might include helping the CFO see past savings to appreciate the value of process improvements, … More