Buyers Meeting Point procurement by Kelly Barner

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The ‘Goldilocks Zone’ for Spend Analysis Success

Also called the habitable zone or life zone, the Goldilocks region is an area of space in which a planet is just the right distance from its home star so that its surface is neither too hot nor too cold. -- How Stuff Works

Procurement organizations have a tendency to push for absolutes through process and technology. Our metrics are set up on a scale where we are incentivized to push ourselves closer and closer to 100%. We want to bring as much spend under management as quickly as possible. Our procure-to-pay technology­—including the availability of data and its analytical capabilities—is expected to deliver visibility in “real time.” Likewise, more categorization granularity is associated with better understanding and improved decision making.

These goals are admirable, and they serve as evidence of procurement’s desire to create maximum value for the organization. At the same time, such absolutism may unintentionally lead us to work against ourselves. We could be insisting upon perfection before getting to work when seeking to provide coverage or visibility that is “just right” would be a better approach to measurable results.

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Kelly Barner risk methods Buyers Meeting Point

BMP Owner Kelly Barner Gets Dedicated Column on the riskmethods Blog

riskmethods is pleased to announce that Kelly Barner, Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point, has agreed to lend her expertise to riskmethods’ supply chain risk management blog as a guest editor. Kelly will bring her unique perspective through a dedicated column covering issues facing procurement and supply chain professionals. Focusing on the intersection of current events and modern supply chain risk management, Kelly brings an unbiased approach that is both authentic and engaging.

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The False Dogma of the Two-System Paradigm

There are a few things that procurement professionals know without hesitation:

  1. Savings are an unavoidable measure of our performance.
  2. Suppliers are key contributors to sustained competitive advantage.
  3. The system requirements of procurement technology ‘power users’ are at odds with the needs and preferences of everyone else in the organization.

Well, two out of three isn’t bad.

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10 Contract Contributions to Business Agility

AdobeStock agilecontracts

When you think about business agility, especially when software and analytics are to be applied, one of the last areas you’d probably think to focus on is contract management. Although today’s contracts are more electronic and automated than their paper-based predecessors, they are still managed as a relatively static component of the end-to-end P2P process.

In fact, some procurement organizations consider contracts the ‘finish line’ in terms of their active involvement with a category or supplier. We push to reach that point – getting the necessary signatures on time and with all the right terms in place – and then hand off to budget owners or business managers until the contract is up for renewal.

This limited approach to contracts presupposes that the name of the supplier organization and the agreement expiration date are the two most important components of the contract. This assertion might even be true if procurement only established a small number of contracts on behalf of their organization annually. But many procurement teams are involved with dozens or even hundreds of contracts over the course of the year. In the context of contracts, therefore, agility has less to do with the sustained activity level associated with one contract over its term and more to do with repeatability and risk minimization.

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