This week’s featured webinar was hosted by ISM, sponsored by Hubwoo and presented by Spend Matters. ‘Doing More with Less in Procurement: a punch list of 25 items to improve your productivity’ was based on a snap poll taken to help participants benchmark themselves relative to their peers in this area. As you might expect, prioritization is key, and we will hear more in the ongoing discussion of tactical versus strategic efforts and how to keep the machine cranking efficiently.
Buyers Meeting Point attends many sales AND procurement webinars/webcasts. One of the interesting things about consistently reading content from quality sources is that you start to notice trends. It is amazing how often the same topics arise at the same time in different places. We use this blog as a way to help you stay on top of the major themes in procurement and supply chain management.
Each week I attend two or three webinars. Usually, I pick the most interesting event to share in this Friday webinar notes post. This week, there were two events on procurement transformation: one from Procurement Leaders/CombineNet/Kellogg and another from Sourcing Interests Group/Zycus/Capgemini. Both were good events in their own right, but combining what I heard in the two events provides a rich look at one of the hottest trends in procurement today.
This week’s featured event was presented by Supply Chain Insights and marks the official launch of the Supply Chain Index. Here is a brief excerpt from their event description:
‘The [Supply Chain] Index is based upon financial performance of companies from 2006 forward. Using market valuations of publically traded companies, we have built a formulaic representation of supply chain excellence using supply chain ratios (E.g. Ratios like Days of Inventory, Operating Margin, Revenue/Employee). … The Supply Chain Index allows companies to better understand the relationship between supply chain ratios and financial performance.”
This week’s featured webinar was hosted by Sourcing Interests Group and presented by Neo Group, a services firm focused on gaining efficiencies through low-cost country providers and outsourcing in general. The focus of the event was global sourcing governance, and how, when leveraged appropriately, it can help companies go ‘from good to great’.
This week’s featured webinar was presented by Directworks, the new name for Co-eXprise, on the state of direct materials sourcing. If you have questions about the rebrand or the reasons behind it, you can read the press release here.
In this week’s featured event we heard from the Sourcing Interests Group Thought Leaders Council. They offered their definitions of savings as well as best practices. If you are interested in more about the members of the Council, read the SIG page about them in the Resource Center.
The Thought Leaders Council advises SIG on the build-out of the SIG Resource Center, makes regular contributions, serves as subject matter experts, and conducts working groups. The Council is representative of the SIG Membership, in that the majority of members are sourcing executives from the Buy-side. The Working Groups take suggestions from the SIG community and build guidelines for sourcing initiatives and categories.
This week’s featured webinar was hosted by Hubwoo and featured Jason Busch of Spend Matters. ‘When Procurement Met Finance - How to Achieve the Hollywood Ending’ evoked the long bumpy road for Harry and Sally (played by Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan) in the 1989 romantic comedy. The connections between the movie and the challenges of the procurement/finance relationship may not obvious, but Jason did a great job keeping the theme going.
This week’s featured webinar was presented by Denali Group and Sourcing Interests Group. Two members of the Denali Group team discussed four challenges procurement organizations face as they attempt to move away from tactical work and retool themselves for strategic category management:
- Strategic partnership
- Resource limitations
- Organizational expectations
- Skills gaps
In this week’s featured webinar, we heard from Ardent Partners Chief Research Officer Andrew Bartolini in an event presented by BravoSolution. Andrew shared a Category Sourcing Scorecard he and his team designed to support sourcing team efforts to build out pipelines that can help allocate team resources and prepare for opportunities.
This week’s featured event was hosted by the Next Level Purchasing Association and was presented by Tim Reis, a procurement manager with 10 years of experience, a regular columnist for Next Level Purchasing’s online magazine and a holder of the SPSM certification. Most importantly, he is an active practitioner.
This week’s featured webinar had an interesting premise – for the first time this year, My Purchasing Center and ProcureCon Indirect have partnered to sponsor the Excellence in Purchasing Indirect Categories (EPIC) Awards competition – EPIC for short. This week’s webinar recognized the finalists for their achievements in indirect spend procurement by having them present.
This week Sourcing Interests Group kicked off their 2013 webinar schedule with a high-level perspective look at procurement goal setting and achievement. The main speaker was Lynne McDonnell, Vice President at A.T. Kearney Procurement and Analytics. The information she shared was based on ATK’s 2011 Procurement Excellence study, which is conducted every three years to track the trends employed by leading professionals and organizations.
In this week's sole event, we started the year with a look back at the last thirty years of supply chain management. It was a panel-format webinar hosted by Supply Chain Insights and moderated by Kelly Keller, Vice President of Marketing from Supply Chain Brain. If you are interested in more on this event, visit the Supply Chain Insights site.
This week’s featured webinar was hosted by Sourcing Interests Group and was a special offering based on what they learned this fall by hosting a series of executive roundtables. This week’s ‘Special Report Webinar’ gave four round table facilitators an opportunity to share what they heard CPOs discussing on a number of current topics including talent retention, sourcing pressure points, risk and sustainability. I encourage you to read the highlights below and to view the event on demand on SIG’s site, as well as to read my own editorializing at the end of this post.
Simon Woodcock, Xchanging
Collaboration will take the place of negotiation as procurement looks to fully leverage the capabilities of the supply chain. Building relationships with suppliers and further integrating networks will move us away from a focus on component cost and towards outcome based compensation models. Be sure to question and restate the true purpose of procurement in the organization, adjusting the model and goals of the group as needed.
John Evans, Denali Group
The items on the forward-looking CPO’s agenda include supplier relationship management, reassessing skills requirements and finding new ways to add value for the business. From a talent management standpoint, many CPOs are starting to embrace the skills traditionally found in sales or business development professionals. This strengthens the relationship building capabilities of the organization but introduces challenges around compensation levels and models.
Colleen Tiner, Beeline
In order to build reputations, respect and recognition within the organization, many procurement teams have found that the best approach is to do a favor – managing “The Big Ugly” as she called it. The Big Ugly is any project or problem facing the organization that procurement can address, in many cases because no other group wants to make the attempt. The effort to influence business units is most effective when played as a long term strategy: “relentless pressure, gently applied.” Her take on the talent challenge required creativity and flexibility as professionals are moved in and out of the organization. Look for skills sets in unexpected places and be open to moving team members to other functions in the organization.
My own read on the roundtable findings…
When I think about the observations of each facilitator, the point that is clear to me is that procurement is changing. This is not a new idea by any means. Outsourcing of the function is gaining increased acceptance across industries and companies. While some CPOs still hold significance within their organization, many others find their positions downgraded or merged into the responsibilities of others. Procurement ACTIVITY is alive and well, and will be as long as companies remain in business.
But… as tactical purchasing work is outsourced, the use of automation becomes more widespread, skill sets in procurement become more broad, and organizations prepare to handle the increased turnover of Millenial employees, the future of the procurement DEPARTMENT is coming into question. Many of the discussions that took place at the roundtables seem to indicate that procurement is looking to evolve for defensive reasons rather than to increase our influence from a position of strength.
This week’s featured webinar comes from the Global eProcure webcast library. If you are interested in viewing this or their other webinars, click here to select a webinar and provide some basic registration information to view.