Category Archives: Sourcing Best Practices

Sourcing Best Practices

The Procurement Maturity Curve — savings at every stage

The role of Procurement is ever changing and growing in importance. What are your company’s current practices? What are you doing to advance to the next level? Savings is still a primary focus and a critical measure of effectiveness, but it’s not the only one. In this two-part series, we’ll examine how procurement technology is (or should be) adding value across enterprises. We’ll also touch on how incorporating data and analytics tools can enhance processes, providing procurement professionals with increased … More

Business considerations for a better year

A lot has already changed within the first few weeks of the year. The China asset bubble finally burst, oil prices are near $25 a barrel and indicators predict especially uncertain times. Could 2016 be the year that we see the predictions of 2008 come home to roost? Whatever the year holds, David Bowie was right, the future will not be boring. As we hope for the best and prepare for the worst, here are my key business considerations for … More

Center Led Procurement: An Introduction

One of the hot topics in sourcing today is the trend toward center-led procurement organizations. This is where strategic decisions are coordinated centrally while transactional activities are decentralized across the organization, especially in large enterprises (>1 billion dollars). Today we are going to compare and contrast center-led procurement with the traditional centralized and decentralized models of procurement, and review some of the advantages of the center-led model. A classic decentralized model of procurement, where each business, functional or geographic unit … More

Empower managers with P2P process improvements

Overhead cost control, reduction and compliance with agreed budgets—They’re on every organization’s agenda, yet few have the processes and solutions in place to achieve them. In this blog we look at the issues and the solutions. Getting overhead under control. Whether it’s a new calendar year or a new fiscal year (or both), now is the time to make your spend control and reduction resolutions, and put the steps in place to make them a reality. Of all the factors … More

Optimizing Strategic Sourcing Efforts – Insight From Research: Part 2

These are exciting times for procurement professionals. But consistently, most procurement leaders feel they should be doing better. Unlike last year’s Ardent report on “The State of Strategic Sourcing,” respondents in 2015 see as obstacles technology systems and processes rather than staff or talent challenges. Moreover, they feel that they can drive improvements that propel procurement forward through effective use of collaboration and enabling technologies, something that best-in-class are doing better than their peers. Survey respondents note that a strong … More

Buying turkey doesn’t have to be like rocket science!

One irony that historians note is that turkey was most likely not eaten on the first Thanksgiving. But tradition is what it is, and turkey is on the menu today. With that being said, there is a lot of turkey to be had this year. Let’s start with some numbers: According to the NTF (for the non-turkey experts, this is the National Turkey Federation), 228 million turkeys will be raised in the U.S. in 2015. As everyone probably knows, the … More

Optimizing Strategic Sourcing Efforts – Insight From Research: Part 1

Strategic sourcing suites are widely used by many in procurement today. Recent research from Gartner notes that majorities of large U.S. and Western European-based companies have invested in one, and rarely buy an e-sourcing application by itself anymore. As a technology, eSourcing has been around for over a decade. But to enhance functionality beyond RFx and reverse auctions, most purchases of strategic sourcing today also include integrated spend analysis, contract lifecycle management and/or supply management solutions. Moreover, as a result … More

How a Contract Management System helps the Strategic Sourcing process:

How a Contract Management System helps the Strategic Sourcing process: Many procurement professionals deploy eProcurement tools for the RFx functionality. They’re often thinking about streamlining their sourcing process, standardizing response formats to facilitate rapid analysis and improve record keeping. There’s another benefit, though, and that’s the contracts management capability that often comes as part of the package. Contract management tools should not be overlooked; they provide the kinds of value that CFOs and internal audit groups appreciate. Some examples: Automated … More

Determine is Bringing Innovation Through Experience & Modernity – Series 3

To understand the trend in technology and how Determine is addressing it is by looking at this from the persona of the company. Organizations want to be smarter by being able to collaborate in new ways using a common platform approach. Taking this concept as part of adopting solutions is something Forrester Research has looked at around the concept of a smart process applications. According to Forrester, what defines a smart process application is the ability to: Import or embed … More

Determine is Bringing Innovation Through Experience & Modernity – Series 2

With the release of the new name, Determine demonstrates that our unity is not just marketing. The strength of the Determine platform is based on experience and forward thinking design. In fact our differentiators could be thought of as two pillars, where the first pillar is depth of our capability based on experience in design. Our depth of experience in strategic sourcing means that our sourcing solution has executed 100,000s of auctions and RFx projects. It means that the technology … More

Meet Determine, Inc. – formerly Selectica, Inc.

Today, we’re very excited to unveil not just a new brand identity and a name, but a brand-new company. Determine, Inc.™ is the result of years of work and planning by many people sharing a singular view about how to best position ourselves and shape the company for the future. Now we’re ready for it, and I couldn’t be more proud. As CEO of Determine, this transformation is one of the defining moments of my career. It has long been … More

Determine is Bringing Innovation Through Experience & Modernity

Businesses today need to address the rising importance of innovation. This applies not just to products, but to innovation in supply chains and business models, which are much harder to copy and to influence change. Moreover, the idea of an open innovation model is providing a basis for how technology should function and behave in the future. Taking the best of what can be provided internally, then leveraging and collaborating what’s being provided by others, creates a unity in ideas … More

Still in the dark ages?

It’s time to face the music; your outdated processes and technologies are killing your business. Successful businesses of the future must adopt and embrace change. For years now, as an analyst or consultant and a managing operator, I have been a catalyst for change within organizations. Today, cloud computing and certainly mobile and big data are changing the future of business. But more than that, the digital revolution has led to a wave of connected technologies and a culture of … More

eSourcing – what does it take in the modern economy?

Sourcing technology over the years has come a long way. While its beginnings initially focused primarily on auctions and RFx, today strategic sourcing efforts can provide a much more comprehensive and integrated view of the supply base. What can be attributed to this development over the past decade is the change in the endgame for procurement, and how procurement views its role in the proverbial organization. Don’t get me wrong, managing cost is, and continues to be, the motivating factor … More

Getting to Insight (Part 3 of 5)

This is the third in a five-part series discussing the obstacles and potential paths forward to achieve visibility — essential to any Procurement organization. The series was initiated based upon the following Ardent paper – HERE.  In the first and second installments the need for procurement visibility starting with Spend Analysis was discussed. Let’s dive right in and examine the second key area or leading indicator of procurement success as outlined by Ardent: Savings. Savings Congratulations are in order if … More