Answers to your questions about Selectica’s acquisition of b-pack

Selectica has just announced the acquisition of b-pack, an industry leader in Purchase to Pay. Since the merger of Selectica and IASTA a year ago, it’s been our goal to provide customers with tailored end-to-end upstream and downstream supply management solutions integrated with enterprise-wide contract lifecycle management. With b-pack, it’s all now possible. We know this is an important step toward efficiency for global enterprises weary of managing multiple vendors in disconnected pieces.   As Chief Sales Officer responsible for … More

Procurement leaders as enterprise leaders, and why ECLM should be in their playbook

According to Forbes, top global companies are relying on their procurement leaders more and more to seek out innovative ways of doing business with suppliers. It’s no longer simply about cutting costs – procurement is more involved in mitigating supply chain risk and making strategic decisions in collaboration with top management. With better information and processes to tracking every company contract, procurement leaders can unlock the value in those contracts and see opportunities for cost savings that would have been nearly … More

How much can procurement change on their own?

As procurement professionals, we have come to take certain ideas for granted. Savings is still our primary performance metric given the ever-increasing challenges of today’s market environment. However, savings can no longer be the exclusive North Star to our voyage. We need to become more strategic by increasing our ability to create shareholder value and contribute to corporate competitive advantage. Collaboration with suppliers, at least in certain categories, requires that we take a multi-dimensional look at each commercial opportunity and … More

How to Justify Spend Analysis When There’s No Clear ROI

I know we don’t have to preach to the choir. You already know that there are some expenses that are hard to justify – not because they aren’t necessary, but because it’s hard to prove that they are worth it. It can be difficult to show where the costs are going to impact the bottom line and why your CFO should consider them necessary. Our procurement customers and prospects are all aware of just how practical spend analysis is for … More

Gartner predicts 2015 as procurement technology matures

Gartner’s 2015 predictions for the procurement technology market, “Predicts 2015: A Maturing Procurement Technology Market Creates New Opportunities for Value Creation” is a good read if you can get your hands on it. With all of the technology that has been deployed over the past 15 years, companies still need to find ways to keep ahead of it. I am actually taken back by the need for enterprises to approach both technology and processes (AGAIN), specifically when it comes to procurement … More

Costly Lesson: Apple cuts 18 suppliers due to non-compliance.

As both procurement experts and suppliers understand, sourcing a product is more involved than simple physical acquisition. Considering the plethora of product recalls that seem to be constantly in the news, it’s clear that making sure products meet certain standards can be challenging if the right monitoring systems aren’t put in place. Let’s face it, defects are not always physical or tangible: more and more, especially as markets become increasingly globalized, companies are building labor standards, fair trade requirements, and … More

Enterprise technology – A future written by millennials?

In viewing the release of our newest sourcing platform during a demo, I tried to discern all the pieces that I saw as unique or compelling. Looking past core features in the sourcing platform, such as RFx, auction and award management capabilities, I saw aspects of the new platform that are clearly distinguishable. Things like a slick and simple UI, collaborative reporting, in-app messaging and other social media, including capabilities for networking, made me think of the evolution of technology … More

Six (6) Contract Writing Tips to Avoid Ambiguity – and Litigation

There is a reason that contracts are full of legal language. They are, after all, legal documents. But the fact that contracts are legal documents is all the more reason to make sure that language is precise. When contract language is imprecise, or worse, incomplete, the door opens to ambiguity and misinterpretation that could lead to disputes. I’ve seen a lot of contracts, and know nothing is worse than foggy language. Believe it or not, good contract management often has … More

A New Metric for a New Perspective on Procurement

In March of 2014, Matthew Eatough, CEO of Proxima Group, wrote an article for Harvard Business Review discussing what he called ‘corporate virtualization‘. The concept is based on research that found that, on average, “69.9% of corporate revenue is directed toward externalized, supplier-driven costs.” The fact that such a large percentage of corporate revenue is spent with external business partners is surprising enough, but the study also uncovered that the percentage increased by 4% from 2011 to 2014, marking a … More

3 quick tips on using CLM to work smarter and faster

If you’re reading this, you already know the importance of contracts to any organization. Just about every business transaction involves contracts, so it’s important to make the most of them. Here are three reminders of how to use CLM to help you work smarter, make deals faster, and be better informed to make intelligent business decisions and ensure compliance. Be quick on the draw With CLM software, you can automate frequent actions such as contract requests, approvals, and renewals. Leverage … More

Opportunities for improvement in sourcing and contracts

A look at Aberdeen’s recent research: I had the opportunity to read “Strategic Sourcing: Lessons Learned” recently published by the Aberdeen Group. You can download it for free at the following link: http://www.aberdeen.com/research/9814/RR-strategic-sourcing-lessons.aspx/content.aspx It is interesting that many companies are holding onto old technologies when the proliferation of new technology to support their sourcing environments is abundant. Given the numbers from the Aberdeen survey as well as analytics from Gartner, Forrester, etc., it is puzzling why companies remain reluctant to … More

A visionary focused on helping procurement improve contract management

Just a couple of days ago, Gartner published its Magic Quadrant for Strategic Sourcing Suites, February 2015. We are proud to note that we have been recognized by Gartner as a visionary in the latest Moving from the leader’s quadrant into the top portion of the visionary quadrant, we take into account our adjustment from the previous report in July 2013. The elimination of many other vendors from the pool should also be noted. One could argue the changes in … More

Analysis: How Procurement Teams Demonstrate ROI (Part 2 of 2)

In my last post, I talked about the results of an Iasta Efficio survey that showed the two top priorities for sourcing teams in 2014 were: Increase the rate of cost savings (identified and realized) Drive wider operational efficiencies through procurement Previously we discussed the benefits and importance of having tools and methods to reporting on savings Analysis: How Procurement Teams Demonstrate ROI (Part 1 of 2). Now we’re ready to move on to the second priority. Priority # 2: Drive … More

Analysis: How Procurement Teams Demonstrate ROI (Part 1 of 2)

As 2015 begins, many organizations are assessing how well they achieved their 2014 goals, preparing the best ways to communicate that success in terms of ROI for the company, and setting goals for 2015. According to an Iasta Efficio survey conducted in April of 2014, the top two priorities for procurement teams in the 2014-2016 timeframe are: Increase the rate of cost savings (identified and realized) Drive wider operational efficiencies through procurement Top Priority: Determining your rate of cost savings … More

How contract management improves supplier relationships

According to Gallup, supplier relationships are among the most overlooked but most important connections a business can have. Being a “customer of choice” can help mitigate risk, lower costs, and spur innovation. Companies that are great customers benefit from a more reliable supply chain and receive “flexible, non-bureaucratic support” from suppliers during crisis situations. What does this mean for enterprises seeking to improve their relationships with suppliers? Based on their research, Gallup came up with a list of five “core … More