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Spend Analysis 101

As a procurement professional, I am frequently tasked with conducting a spend analysis on behalf of current and potential clients, but for those outside of the industry, this may be an unfamiliar exer...

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Nearshoring: Why now?

When you think of outsourcing manufacturing operations, what country do you typically think of? China? Vietnam? Philippines? Yes, Asia is typically the go-to region for companies looking to cut costs ...

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Nearshoring: Why Now? - Warnings

As we covered in Nearshoring: Why Now?, outsourcing production operations to Mexico (or nearshoring) offers a number of tangible and intangible benefits over traditional “low-cost” country sourcing. T...

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Risk Management in Supply Chain and Procurement: Preparing for the Storm

Although we’re a few weeks past the Hanjin Shipping bankruptcy now, the shake up left experts, businessmen, companies, and customers alike wondering what other events could potentially jeopardize thei...

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Tips for Effective Light Fleet Sourcing

Fleet operations can absolutely be an overwhelming category to manage. Between deciding on the right vehicle manufacturer, understanding the ever-changing vehicle features, selecting the appropriate m...

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Achieving World-Class Procurement: The Steps Leading Companies are Taking to Optimize their Procurement Teams

In today’s competitive market landscape, simply having a centralized procurement organization is only the first step to better managed supplier relationships and spend. Leading organizations are quick...

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No Leverage? No Problem: Tips for turning a lack of negotiating leverage into a winning strategy

 “We take a buck, we shoot it full of steroids and we call it leverage.” -Gordon Gecko (Wall Street 2)   Leverage - a word that has such meaning it could be used to define itself. When it co...

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Fleet: Key Considerations

Have you ever wondered what other company’s fleets look like? How other companies source their fleet units, parts, and services? What information is needed to begin? The first thing to know, is that n...

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Managed Print Services Models Part II: Actual Volumes or Allowance + Overages?

In Part I of this series, Managed Print Services Models Part I: Lease vs Buy?, we looked at the key business considerations when making the lease vs. buy decision for acquiring copiers/printers. The other decision point within an MPS program is determining the service/maintenance agreement structure.

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Establishing Trust in Transformation

When working with transformation advisory clients, we often talk about the role of procurement and the need to change how they are perceived within the organization. Changing stakeholder perceptions i...

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Setting the Foundation: Preparing Spend Data for a Procurement Metrics Program

Metrics are a critical aspect of measuring the success of any business function. The importance of quantifying progress against goals and objectives cannot be overstated. Without a metrics program, un...

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How to Maintain Your Seat at the Table (Even if you aren’t there yet)

Procurement organizations often note one pursuit above all else: getting a seat at the table. I think we have coined this phrase more than any other in the procurement space in the last decade. If you...

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Broken Procurement Theory

I recently read about ‘Broken Windows Theory’ from a 1982 Atlantic article by George L. Kelling and James Q. Wilson. It is a criminological theory that suggests small but visible signs of public disar...

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Small Businesses Can Have a Sustainable Supply Chain Too

In my article Data & Socially Responsible Procurement, I discussed how data analytics is located at the intersection of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and procurement. In particular, I expl...

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Momentum and Sustainability Create Impact: How Marketing and Procurement Can Deliver Business Growth (Part 2)

In part 1 of this series, I addressed the misaligned nature of the past relationship between procurement and marketing – as well as the disruptive potential for companies that can bring these two team...

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Empowering Procurement to Drive M&A Activity

The uncertainty surrounding Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) can be frightening for all employees involved, but often overlooked is the potential a merger can bring for procurement to hit the “RESET...

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Why Your RFP Responses are Failing

From buyers to suppliers, everyone knows that the Request for Proposal (RFP) process is… less than ideal. At the same time, it is often central to the procurement process, so sales teams everywhere should be prepared to put their best foot forward when responding.

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Providing Real Value in Data Analysis

Data analysis has an image problem. Despite the fact that data collection is priority one, regardless of how common “big data” buzzwords have gotten, and setting aside all the calls for data-centric decision making… The boots on the ground, those of us who manage this analysis daily, have a problem.

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Book Review: Managing Indirect Spend

I’ve reviewed quite a few books – most of which are on spend management or negotiation. Some have made me laugh, like Negotiation Mastery and Profitable Buying Strategies. A few have made me cry, and ...

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The True Cost of Noncompliance

Have you ever wondered why your savings projections supersede the realized savings? Have you ever been challenged by your finance department to validate the projected cost savings one year into an agr...

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