“What pressures are coming to bear now, or in the foreseeable future, that may impact your supply chain and the ultimate sale of your products or services? Gathering market intelligence should include an understanding of what is happening in the economies of both your consumer’s as well as your supplier’s locations. This market intelligence can be used to both react to conditions and to take advantage of potential cost savings opportunities.”
--‘Understanding Market Pressures’ Managing Indirect Spend, Joe Payne and Bill Dorn
This week’s Wiki-Wednesday article is about the challenges of capturing savings due to cost reduction and avoidance. One of the sections addresses Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), and the difficulties of calculating and reporting on those costs.
Today’s eSourcing Wiki-Wednesday topic outlines the many roles and responsibilities associated with being a successful sourcing professional. One of those roles is to provide ‘deep domain expertise’:
Management, members of the individual procurement organizations, and stakeholders will all expect the procurement professionals in the center of excellence to have deep domain expertise, especially in strategic categories.
For anyone that has ever run an eSourcing project, there is a typical flow that most processes follow. The project kicks off, and everyone’s focus is split between costs and known issues with the incumbent suppliers(s). Procurement uses historical spend to put together a list of line items with quantity and specification data. The company’s standard list of supplier questions is loaded into the eRFX system, along with any additional questions for suppliers that relate to the category of spend in question or new developments in the industry being sourced from. Everyone works frantically until the day the RFP opens and then – you wait. The project comes to a complete standstill for the two weeks (e.g.) that the RFP is open. Then the mad dash begins again as you wade through and evaluate supplier responses, pricing, and attachments.
This week’s eSourcing Wiki-Wednesday topic is Metrics for the Rest of Us – an article that breaks metrics down into Cost Avoidance and Reduction, Process Improvement, Operations, Customer Service, and Asset Utilization.
The last of the Cost reduction and avoidance metrics, “Spend Under Management” is defined as:
Total Spend Under Management / Total Spend.
As noted in the eSourcing Wiki, this is a straightforward calculation. The problem is not with our ability to divide one number by another, but in defining the inputs to the equation. Total spend should be easy, although your department may use either total annual spend or total addressable spend (which is likely to exclude taxes and salaries). The real question is to decide what spend is designated as being ‘under management’.
This week’s eSourcing Wiki-Wednesday topic is Sourcing Success Enablers. Under the Organizational Best Practices heading is a brief paragraph that gets to the heart of what all procurement and supply management departments need to stay focused on:
“As part of a supply chain focus, successful companies do not overlook indirect categories. Chances are some categories (such as office equipment, professional services, etc.) consume a significant part of the total organizational spend and will also benefit from a review. Strategically source everything. (Often strategic sourcing means outsourcing procurement of non-critical, low value spend, or commodity categories to external organizations that also follow strategic sourcing principles.)”