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Art of Procurement

Learn from Procurement Experts. Host Philip Ideson talks with thought leaders who share the trends, strategies and tactics that you can lever to elevate the role of procurement - and your career.
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Now displaying: Category: procurement
Oct 30, 2023

“It's important for providers to understand it’s not just about providing technology, but a solution that actually drives value. They have a responsibility to ensure that the implementation and adoption go well because it has a long-term effect.”  - Chris Sawchuk, Principal and Global Procurement Advisory Practice Leader at The Hackett Group


Evaluating P2P solution providers can be challenging, but it is critical for procurement to tailor how they assess and select their solutions to the specific needs and expectations of their stakeholders. Procurement should look for solution providers that fit into ongoing transformation initiatives and align with their organization’s maturity level while also relying on data-driven benchmarking to evaluate their best options.

Philip Ideson recently spoke with Andy Warzecha, Principal and Chief Market Intelligence Officer, Christopher Sawchuk, Principal and Global Procurement Advisory Practice Leader, and Rick Gardner, Director, from The Hackett Group. They discussed how procurement can implement The Hackett Value Matrix to create new opportunities for innovation and improvement. 

In this conversation they address: 

  • How to drive more cost savings and value for the organization
  • The impact of AI in the procurement solution space
  • How to increase adoption to achieve greater spend visibility
  • Procurement’s ability to generate value beyond savings

 

Links:

 

Oct 27, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Oct 23, 2023

“Developing trustworthy and reliable suppliers is critical to your business, and maintaining those relationships is beneficial to the organization as a whole.” - Saurabh Mehta, Chief Revenue Officer and Managing Partner of Ops and Performance at Consus Global 

Developing strong supplier relationships can have a profound impact on the overall health of a business and it is one of procurement’s most critical responsibilities. 

While a certain subset of suppliers may fulfill a tactical role, others have the potential to be true collaborators alongside procurement in driving value for the business - if procurement can undergo a mindset shift in the way they think about, approach, value, and measure supplier relationships. 

In this episode, based on an Art of Procurement webinar, Kelly Barner explores this mindset shift with Saurabh Mehta, Chief Revenue Officer and Managing Partner of Ops and Performance, and Manish Agarwal, Vice President of Supply Chain, both from Consus Global. 

In the episode, they discuss:

  • How and in what ways supplier relationships have changed in recent years
  • Why procurement should work to understand the supplier’s perspective
  • How a strong supplier relationship does (or doesn’t) affect pricing
  • Tactical and strategic tips for building strong, healthy relationships with suppliers

 

Links:

 

Oct 20, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Oct 16, 2023

“You need to know your suppliers, what they can and what they can’t do, and what they’re ready to do on top of the relationship you have every day. In an unstable supply chain, you need to invent new rules.” - Olivier Berrouiguet, President & CEO, Synertrade

The increasing complexity and volatility in the global supply chain is putting more pressure on procurement to level up their approach to risk management. But resource-constrained teams and a varied network of stakeholders with different understandings of “risk” means procurement has to work smarter, not harder, to be successful. 

Philip Ideson recently spoke with Olivier Berrouiguet, President and CEO of Synertrade, to get his perspective on how procurement can improve their approach to third party risk management and, perhaps most importantly, how they can adjust their strategy to meet the needs of the moment, which is increasingly defined by instability, risk, and disruption. 

In this podcast episode, Philip and Olivier discuss:

  • How sustained supply chain volatility is changing the way procurement should approach risk management
  • The often overlooked connection between supplier relationship management and supply chain risk management
  • Why a more holistic approach to risk management is needed for direct, indirect, and services procurement
  • The role of technology and generative AI in shaping the future of risk management solutions

Links:

 

Oct 13, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Oct 9, 2023

“If you want to be successful in what you do personally or professionally, you’ve got to manage relationships because the show goes on. You need strong relationships with contractors and suppliers that you know can deliver.” - Matt Mehler, President of PROcurement Solutions

Have you ever wondered what it is like to manage procurement for a large, high-profile venue? According to Matt Mehler, former VP of Procurement for Madison Square Garden, it’s exciting, but there’s also a tremendous amount of pressure.

Madison Square Garden is a large corporate entity that hosts hundreds of sporting and entertainment events per year, welcoming millions of people to its facilities, which also include entertainment venues off site and even in other cities.

In this podcast episode, the opening session of Categorypalooza 2023, Kelly Barner interviews Matt about the complexities and challenges that come along with managing procurement for a large venue with many different types of services.

They discuss topics like:

  • How to manage services procurement in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment
  • The pivotal role relationships play in large-scale services spend management
  • Managing expectations and measuring success in a complex organization with multiple stakeholders
  • Navigating the nuances of supplier relationship and performance management in an advertiser- or sponsor-supported organization



Links:

Oct 6, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Oct 2, 2023

“When you can demonstrate short-term success and communicate it – both inside and outside the company – it helps to smooth the pathway to the funding, staffing, and commitment required for longer-term impactful change.”Lois Eichacker, VP of Customer Success, Supplier.io

Supplier diversity is one of the most meaningful, impactful, and important corporate programs led by procurement, and a growing number of organizations are making supplier diversity a top priority. But creating a scalable supplier diversity program that can grow with the business, withstand changing political and economic landscapes, and sustain itself over time requires a unique set of strategies and tactics.

To better understand how procurement can build a strong supplier diversity program, Philip Ideson and Kelly Barner spoke with Daniel Dorr, VP of Marketing, and Lois Eichacker, VP of Customer Success, both from Supplier.io. As Daniel and Lois shared, a solid supplier diversity program is characterized by transparency, clear communication of expectations, and data-driven decision making.

In this episode, based on an AOP Live session, Daniel and Lois discuss: 

  • The importance of a solid spend baseline for supplier diversity growth
  • How procurement can secure buy-in from decision makers
  • Category-specific strategies for supplier diversity growth 

Links:

 

Sep 29, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Sep 25, 2023

“Services are relationship-based from a procurement perspective, whether that means the relationship procurement needs to have with the business to be successful or the relationship the company has with the service provider.” - Philip Ideson.

This week’s episode of the podcast provides a behind the scenes look at Art of Procurement’s ongoing research into services procurement - research that everyone in our listening audience and social following is encouraged to participate in. 

Management of services categories has changed substantially in recent years, driven by the rise of contract work, freelancing, and contingent labor. With an increasing number of professionals working remotely, the barriers to accessing external talent are undergoing yet another adjustment.

In this conversation, Philip Ideson and Kelly Barner talk through some of the data points that form the core of the survey, sharing their perspective on the business outcomes and procurement processes in question.

Procurement organizations in all industries and geographies will want to benchmark themselves against the following themes covered in the survey, which only takes 5-7 minutes to complete:

  • Ownership over ‘make v. buy’ decisions related to talent and staffing needs
  • Procurement’s consultative role in the process for establishing service specifications
  • How companies decide which services are strategic - and which are not

Links:

 

Sep 22, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Sep 18, 2023

“If you look at the strategic sourcing process, I think it was made for complex categories. That’s one of the things that makes this so exciting as a potential lighthouse project. It’s a great opportunity for procurement to say, ‘This is why we do this. This is all of the value we can add.’”Benjamin Lambert, Principal at Efficio

Navigating complex spend categories can be challenging for procurement – the stakes tend to be high, stakeholder resistance is real, and the category may be nuanced or unfamiliar to procurement. At the same time, complex spend categories give procurement some of the best opportunities to flex their strategic muscles and demonstrate the depth and breadth of value they can provide across the business. 

To understand how procurement should leverage the opportunity associated with complex spend categories, Philip Ideson spoke with Ben Lambert, Principal at Efficio. According to Ben, procurement needs a mindset shift when it comes to complex spend - it is time for procurement to get excited about complex spend categories rather than fearing the potential risks. 

 

In this episode, Ben and Phil talk about: 

  • What makes a category “complex”
  • How procurement can establish their reputation as a true strategic partner beyond tactical execution
  • Ways procurement can deliver maximum value even when the category is unfamiliar 

Links:

 

Sep 15, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Sep 11, 2023

“If this is something that you want to tackle, it is not a lone wolf-type project. You’re going to need the support of the business. Having the right partner or the right shepherd in the organization can make a really meaningful difference.”  --Brian Salkowski, Chief Operating Officer at Guidant Global

Decisions about how a company manages their external talent management program should not be taken lightly. There are many factors contributing to complexity, including varied expectations, a high bar for efficiency and effectiveness requirements, and the fact that no two people on the planet offer quite the same combination of capabilities.

In this episode, Philip Ideson and Kelly Barner interview Brian Salkowski, Chief Operating Officer at Guidant Global, and Marie France, Contingent Workforce Management and Procurement Operations Expert at Guidant Global. 

They discuss opportunities to elevate services procurement without disrupting the internal team or the stakeholders that rely upon that source of talent:

  • The impact this category of spend has on a company’s ability to operate, and the contributions it can make to procurement’s value proposition
  • How to optimize spending decisions at the intersection of multiple options and talent fulfillment models
  • The importance of gathering market intelligence and benchmarking data, making the most of quantitative and qualitative supporting facts to bolster the business case

Links:

Sep 8, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Sep 4, 2023

“If you were to step back and look at the output of all these companies’ RFPs, I think what you are trying to get as procurement is not these wonky proposals. You're trying to engage in a very dynamic conversation, because even in software, the way in which we configure and support and train are all really better had as a live dialogue.” - Chris Mele, Managing Partner at Software Pricing Partners

Most procurement practitioners would probably acknowledge that there is plenty of room for improvement when it comes to the structure and process associated with RFPs, especially for SaaS spend. Creating a fair, level playing field in the RFP process is a common challenge, and there’s often a lack of agility or customization: too much reliance on a one-size-fits-all sourcing approach.

To better understand the supplier’s perspective and what pain points affect overall business outcomes, Philip Ideson spoke with Chris Mele, Managing Partner at Software Pricing Partners. Chris first appeared on the podcast two years ago to represent a sales perspective on the RFP process. In this follow-up episode, he returns to talk about improvements he has seen and to break down what is still not working. 

In this episode, Chris and Phil discuss:

  • The most dysfunctional aspects of the traditional RFP process for SaaS procurement  
  • Practical ways procurement can optimize the RFP process
  • Whether standard RFPs are obsolete, and if so, what is might be a replacement

Why procurement should opt for a two-way dialogue instead of a one-sided RFP

Links:
Chris Mele on LinkedIn
“A Sales Perspective on Software Pricing and the RFP Process” with Chris Mele

Sep 1, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Aug 28, 2023

“The largest corporations that spend the most on business travel are generally at about 75% of their 2019 spend, and they seem to be plateauing there. The growth is really coming from the small and mid-sized enterprises – those are the ones that are powering the recovery.” - Scott Gillespie, Founder & CEO of tClara

The current state of business travel is in an interesting place, characterized by a healthy dose of cautious optimism and adaptability that’s counter-balanced by concerns over climate implications and the rising cost of travel.

The post-pandemic “recovery” that we all expected is indeed underway, but it has also exposed some hesitancy in the market as some business travelers have grown to prefer the convenience (and low cost) of Zoom over in-person travel.   

To discuss this and more, I recently welcomed back Scott Gillespie to the podcast. Scott is the founder and CEO of tClara, a company that provides advice, thought leadership, and innovation to business travel industry stakeholders.

Scott is an industry-leading expert on travel strategy, carbon emissions, justifiable travel, traveler friction, and trip valuation. He has also worked across the travel industry and got his start in the ATK strategic sourcing practice of the 1990s while managing the corporate travel category.

Scott was first on the podcast all the way back in 2016, and we recently reconnected over a piece of research that he has undertaken called “The Justified Business Trip” that measures the ROI of individual business trips and its usage in managing travel demand.

In this episode, we also discussed the current health of the business travel category. Scott has recently attended the 2023 GBTA conference, and I started by asking him some of his takeaways from the event.

We covered things like:

  • Key factors driving the recovery of the business travel industry
  • Most common pain points in business travel
  • Quantitative models for justifying business trip expenses
  • How to differentiate low-value from high-value trips and prioritize your company’s or team’s travel budget accordingly

Links:

 

Aug 25, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Aug 21, 2023

“Yes, change is hard to manage and process at any level which is why I always recommend that you give change in bite-sized pieces. Bring people along the way.”

  • Chandell Shorter, Senior Consultant of Change Management, Corcentric

 

Change, especially large-scale change, can be hard, overwhelming, or even scary for some people, but it’s also an inevitable part of life and work. Procurement professionals often find themselves at the very center of critical change management projects, leading change around processes, technology, talent management, and skills development, all of which can have profound effects on the company morale and culture.

How can procurement lead the business through this change without implementing it in a way that it backfires or creates resistance? 

In this episode, based on an AOP Live session, Chandell Shorter, Senior Consultant of Change Management at Corcentric, and Joe Payne, SVP Source-to-Pay at Corcentric, discussed everything procurement should know about change management with host Kelly Barner. 

They covered:

  • How to create meaningful communication and training strategies that help drive change and generate support from across the business
  • Why it’s so important to frontload engagement and communication at the project level 
  • Ways to lower common risks associated with change management, like personnel loss, concerns over cost and ROI, resistance, and skills gaps
  • How the company’s past relationship to change should inform procurement’s approach

 

Links:

 

Aug 18, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Aug 14, 2023

“There are two ideal profiles for a procurement founder … you have industry veterans that live the problem, feel the pain, go out and create a solution to solve that pain. That’s been a tale as old as time. … There’s also serial entrepreneurs that don’t have a procurement background but understand a problem and want to go study it and bring on others to help them.”

In recent years, there has been an “explosion” of procurement tech startups. But not all procurement startups are able to reach their full potential.

In this episode from Digital Outcomes 2023, Philip Ideson speaks with Jack Freeman, procure tech investor and Partner at PeakSpan Capital, about the challenges and opportunities procurement tech startups face, particularly in category specialized solutions like SaaS, vertical software, finance, or construction. 

Jack shares his perspective on:

  • The most common reasons procure tech startups struggle 
  • Strategies for avoiding the most common roadblocks founders and CPOs face when working with or launching young or emerging technologies
  • The skills and background procurement tech founders should develop to successfully raise the capital they need to scale their technologies and go to market
  • The nuances of what makes a successful procure tech founder

Links:

 

Aug 11, 2023

Procurement 6 is a short podcast from Art of Procurement that publishes in the Art of Procurement feed every Friday morning at 6am US Eastern Time.

Presented by a member of the Art of Procurement team, each episode has 6 short segments that summarize the week in procurement.

Segments range from procurement tips to podcast summaries, from details of events to news or overviews of blog posts that capture our attention.

Aug 7, 2023

As companies face the weight of inflation and the potential for recession, executives are reevaluating their decentralized approaches to procurement management and decision making. Instead, many organizations are making the move back toward centralized procurement models to keep a sharp eye on the bottom line. The focus has shifted from viewing cost savings as a 'nice-to-have' to a necessity for operational continuity.

In this episode, based on a recent AOP Live session, Mu Wagh, Chief Operating Officer at Procure Analytics, and Matt Reddington, their Vice President of Operations, discuss how a strong corporate culture can help companies navigate challenging economic times as they transition to centralized control in procurement.

Mu and Matt provide valuable advice on how to strike a balance in the transition to centralized control without adding friction into the procurement process or doing harm to the organizational culture. 

  • Strategies to increase compliance without disrupting procurement teams
  • Tracking savings and spend analysis as a measure of purchasing efficiency and procurement success
  • Establishing feedback mechanisms from different user groups to ensure procurement delivers what they need

 

Links:

 

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