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"The Point" is written by BMP Editor Kelly Barner as well as a diverse group of guest contributors.

When procurement looks in the mirror, what do we see?

Sometimes a post on social media connects with people such that it takes on a life of its own. That happened this week in the wake of the Ivalua NOW event in Paris.

Philip Ideson shared a picture of Duncan Jones from Forrester Research sharing a striking statistic about procurement’s self-assessed v. actual maturity. You can see the image above, but here are the raw numbers:

  • Procurement organizations who self-assess as at the beginning of their maturity curve: 4%
  • Procurement organizations who are actually at the beginning of their maturity curve: 60%
  • Procurement organizations who self-assess as advanced: 65%
  • Procurement organizations who are actually advanced: 16%

While it is fair to ask questions about the Forrester methodology and maturity framework that might explain away some of the discrepancy, the fact remains that procurement’s perception of our own maturity is significantly skewed from reality. As a profession, we are significantly overestimating our organizational maturity by a huge margin.

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Guest Post on the Ivalua Blog: The Annual Budget Process as a Contact Sport

If your company closes its books with the calendar year, there is a good chance the budget review process is quickly approaching. With it come the games departments play – and they are not child’s play by any means. The annual Budget Games are at minimum a contact sport, and at their most extreme a blood sport.

The rules are timeless and well known:

  • The largest budget carries with it the most influence in the organization. We are expensive, so therefore we are valuable.
  • Requests for increases indicate big plans and are intended to communicate vision, while a group that can do the same or more with less lacks ambition and imagination.
  • Perhaps the most dangerous rule for procurement is: if you don’t spend it, you lose it. This unfortunately equates realized savings with a loss of influence, a frustrating indication of how our efforts are often perceived.

Procurement’s role in the process varies greatly from company to company. As cutthroat as the Games can be, there is no such thing as a bystander and each role has its own advantages and liabilities.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL POST ON IVALUA'S BLOG

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Guest Post on the Ivalua Blog: Can Technology Cure Procurement’s Budget Blues?

Budgets are concrete things, based in fixed numbers. But it’s amazing how much time is spent discussing budgets subjectively. Much like the spend procurement brings under management, finalizing a budget can be managed with the 80/20 rule: 80 percent of the time should be dedicated to discussing 20 percent of the spend. The trick is to discuss the right 20 percent!

Procurement technology can play a bigger role in budgeting than it does today. When spend categorization aligns with projects and line items in a budget, the whole process becomes more fact-based. Past budgets can be compared to actual spending for an improved understanding of where forecasting was the most (or the least) accurate. Projects that never took place will be easier to spot, as will overages by cost center or supply requirement.

Predictable categories of spend shouldn’t be the main focus. Assuming the need was properly anticipated, only minimal changes (if any) are likely to be required from one year to the next. Instead, more benefits come when discussion centers on investment opportunities with upside, or those that carry specific risks.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS POST ON THE IVALUA BLOG

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Guest Post on the Ivalua Blog: Looking at Procurement's Assets with Fresh Eyes

Sometimes the best ideas are right in front of us. This can be evident when you look at a situation with fresh eyes, much like what the United States Postal Service recently did.

The USPS is a large organization facing unprecedented changes that are challenging long-held assumptions about how to operate efficiently and effectively. Ideas to improve their declining financial situation were mostly variations on past strategies: closing branches, stopping Saturdaydelivery or raising prices. Not surprisingly, those approaches did little to improve the situation.

But the tide may be about to change. On May 21, the Inspector General of the USPS issued a report with some bold new ideas such as exploring ways to better leverage an under-appreciated asset: their national network of localized offices. Rather than pursue tired old approaches, they are exploring ways to increase the financial services they offer and create new revenue streams without making significant additional investments into infrastructure or personnel.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THE POST

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Webinar Recommendations for May 18 – 22, 2015: Trusted Advisor Status, Supply Risk, The Road to Resiliency

Any one of this week’s recommend webinars will be a good pick if you are looking to increase your skills, your influence, or your … click on the title of each to connect to that event on our calendar and link to the registration page.

 

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Webinar Notes: 5 Unexpected Benefits from Your Source-to-Pay Solution

This week’s webinar notes are from a January 28th event run by Ivalua and presented by Corey Roberts, Project Director at CACI International, and Michael Lamoureux of Sourcing Innovation. The full replay is already available on demand after a quick registration on Ivalua’s site.

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Webinar Notes: Trends in Spend Management – Configuration vs Customization

 

“Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants so long as it is black.”

-- Henry Ford about the Model T Ford (My Life and Work (1922), p. 71)

This week’s featured webinar notes are from an April 16th webinar presented by ivalua with guest speakers from Spend Matters and HAVI Global Solutions. The event is available on demand here

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Guest — alex
i personnally think this is the best Spend Management and using it is resourceful.
Friday, 18 July 2014 09:47
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