Back in 2012, Sylvain Mansotte received the call from the newly appointed CPO of a large Australian based construction company to assist in the building a new procurement function. He jumped at the chance, and one of his first priorities was to understand his new employers’ third party spend profile.
Within 2 months, Sylvain had uncovered a $20M fraud that spanned 12 years and led to the perpetrator – a finance executive with 30 years of experience in the company – admitting to the crime, and ultimately being sentenced to 15 years in prison.
Today’s Art of Procurement is Sylvain’s story. Sylvain discusses how he uncovered the fraud, and the decisions he had to make in blowing the whistle.
We then talk more specifically about procurement fraud. Sylvain shares a number of fraud red flags, and provides tips on how you can ensure you have an environment where a whistleblower feels safe in coming forward if they have information to share.
The experience inspired Sylvain to found Whispli, a two-way platform that enables the anonymous communication of sensitive information. Originally designed as a tool to help whistleblowers report potential frauds without fear of recriminations, the platform is now being used across many industries, including helping students anonymously report bullying or harassment at school.
Sylvain’s story is absorbing, and also a wakeup call to realize that procurement fraud is real, and that any one of us in the profession may find ourselves in the same position as Sylvain at any time, given the nature of our roles.
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/fraud
It has been all hands on deck this week preparing for The Procurement Revolution. In the course of recording content, there was a piece that I just couldn’t wait for next week to publish. So, I thought I would hand over the reins of the Art of Procurement Friday Show today to Kate Vitasek.
Kate is a faculty member in the University of Tennessee’s Graduate and Executive Education programs, and founder and lead researcher for the Vested business methodology.
I asked Kate to provide her perspective on an area that she believes we need to think differently about to help us to continue to mature as a profession. Listen in to hear Kate explain the concept of sourcing business models, and why different sourcing approaches are needed based on the nature of the relationship you are trying to build with the selected supplier.
For more information, visit http://theprocurementrevolution.com
The Procurement Revolution is less than two weeks away! I am busily recording content from thought leaders around the world who have inspiring perspectives to share on how we need to challenge the status quo to survive and thrive in the new era of procurement.
Listen in to today's episode to learn more about the event, the content that will be shared, and the channels we are using to get the word out.
To register to join The Procurement Revolution, visit http://theprocurementrevolution.com
Much has been written about the fact that the Millennial Generation will make up 50% of the workforce by 2020. How to attract and retain Millennial professionals is becoming an increasingly important challenge for procurement leaders as large numbers of baby boomers retire by the day.
In the first part of today's episode, I connect with M.L. Peck (of the Institute for Supply Management - ISM) and Donna Cicale (of THOMASNET.com). We talk about the challenge of attracting Millennials into the supply chain and procurement profession, and the 30 Under 30 program that ISM and THOMASNET.com developed to showcase talented and emerging leaders.
In the second part of the interview, I sit down with Amy Georgi, a Program Manager responsible for Procurement M&A at Fluke Electronics. Amy is the current Megawatt Winner of the 30 Under 30 Program. Firstly, Amy and I talk about procurement's role in facilitating M&A in a manufacturing environment. We then transition into a key pillar of motivation and job satisfaction for Millennial professionals - the ability to have flexibility in their work locations. From personal experience, this is something the solicits passionate perspectives that vary wildly! In our conversation, Amy shares tips for procurement leaders faced with employees who want and value location independence, and for professionals on how to stay in touch with the home office when working remotely.
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/30under30
How can professionals best position themselves for success in the new era of procurement? That is the question that I explore in the second of a two part series on the factors that look to change the shape of our profession.
In this episode, I explain the notion of a two-tier procurement profession, and the six different role types that I believe will be fundamental in ensuring that procurement remains relevant in times of significant change.
For more information, visit http://artofprocurement.com/nextgen2
What will the future of procurement look like, and how as procurement professionals can we prepare for disruption that is heading our way?
In the first of a two part series, I explore the likelihood that procurement as a function will even exist in 10 years time - in response to a number of projections that I have recently heard about the future of our profession.
I then share my perspective on how I believe procurement will evolve, based on both my personal experiences and learnings to date from interviewing thought leaders on the Art of Procurement.
For more information, visit http://artofprocurement.com/nextgen1
On today's Art of Procurement, I welcome Coupa President and CEO Rob Bernshteyn to the show. In our discussion, Rob and I focus on the concept of value as a service, and the benefits of focusing on delivering outcomes rather than tasks.
I then question Rob on what procurement leaders can apply from the concept of value of a service as they look to build a more stakeholder orientated procurement delivery model and the capabilities that underpin it.
For more information, visit http://artofprocurement.com/valueasaservice
As a Buyer, a key factor in my sourcing decisions was the size of the supplier. While it is arguably the greatest piece of marketing of all time, the fact that “nobody ever got fired for buying IBM” was often at the forefront of my mind.
I had a number of reasons for taking this approach – some real, some perceived. In today’s Art of Procurement, I explore the reality of working with small and medium sized businesses with Tom Greco and Ed Edwards of THOMASNET.com.
First, Tom and Ed explain which of my fears were based on fact, and which were in my mind only. They then provide guidance on how I could have mitigated the risks that are present to take advantage of the benefits that working with small and medium sized businesses provides.
We then move to the other side of the table. How do small and medium sized businesses feel about working with larger procurement functions.
The answers surprised me. In essence, smaller companies fear working with larger organizations as much as I did with them.
So how can we break the cycle? In the final part of the discussion, Tom and Ed provide their insights into how we as procurement professionals can more effectively facilitate the use of smaller companies to benefit from the innovations – and often lower costs – that they can often provide.
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/smb
On Wednesday of this week, I joined host Jamie Liddell (Editor in Chief at Outsource Magazine) and fellow panelists Kate Vitasek (Vested) and Don Ryan (KPMG) on this month’s Outsource Talks Q&A webinar.
During the webinar, I answered questions from Jamie related to the current challenges that CPO’s are facing, and the evolution (and future) of procurement outsourcing. My favorite was a question on how I would structure the sourcing organization if a Fortune 50 company with a huge budget came knocking at my door!
When Jamie approached me to be a panelist on Outsourcing Talks, I thought it would be fun if we continued the discussion on the Art of Procurement. So in today’s show, I turn the tables on Jamie and put him in the hot seat!
In the webinar, it was suggested that technological change will lead to a revolution in the way organizations access business services. I ask Jamie if this is hype, or reality. We also discuss the ongoing implications of Brexit, and I ask Jamie if his perspective has changed since he wrote passionately against Brexit the morning after the vote.
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/outsourcetalks
As the Co-Founder, Chairman and CEO of Tradeshift, Christian Lanng is on the front lines of the technology evolution, and he gets to see first-hand the impact that innovative technology is having – and will have - on the enterprise.
In today’s Art of Procurement podcast, I sit down with Christian to understand what this will mean for procurement. If Christian’s vision materializes, it will mean a seismic shift is in store for our profession over the next 10 years.
In this episode, you will learn:
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/tradeshift
Procurement plays a pivotal role in the delivery and execution of the Olympic Games. However, it was not always like that. The organizing committee of the 2012 London Olympic games took the decision to invest in strategic procurement like never before. The result: the success of team created a legacy whereby the IOC has recognized that procurement must play a pivotal role in the delivery of all subsequent Games.
I am joined today by Gerry Walsh, the CPO of the London 2012 games. We discuss his and his team's Olympic journey, including the key challenges his team faced, how they overcame them, and the extraordinary lengths that they went to, to ensure that the Organizing Committee fulfilled their CSR commitments.
For more information, visit http://artofprocurement.com/olympics
As procurement professionals, we often see our peers across the negotiating table as adversaries. However, there is a lot that we can learn and apply from the art of Sales, particularly when it comes to influencing others.
This week’s guest on the Art of Procurement is Stan Garber, President of Scout RFP. Stan is a proven sales and business development leader, and I wanted to tap into that experience to focus on two specific use cases where procurement can lever Sales techniques to increase their sphere of influence. First, we explore ways of selling the procurement value proposition internally, and then shift focus and consider how you can convince larger suppliers to provide “customer-of-choice” status when your level of spend alone may not merit such treatment.
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/scout
In my experience, there are few stakeholder relationships that are as important, or as fractious, as those between procurement and IT - particularly when it comes to supporting strategic purchases. How can we turn this relationship on its head, and become friends and not foes?
This was the topic of today's conversation with Kendra Von Esh, ex-CIO of Veolia and current Executive Strategic Advisor for Coupa. Kendra and I explore how the CIO is measured, why a CIO may bypass procurement, and what we can do about it.
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/cio
As the skill sets that CPO’s require from their procurement professionals continues to evolve, the market for the most qualified talent is becoming more competitive than ever.
Previously, the lure of a brand, or a small step up in responsibilities and salary was enough to attract the best and brightest. As a candidate, you were told to be happy that someone – anyone – was willing to give you a pay check.
How things change.
In today’s show, Andrew Daley, co-founder of procurement recruitment firm Edbury Daley provides his insight on what the most effective firms are doing to attract the best procurement talent in the market.
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/rulesofattraction
Kelly Barner and I feel strongly that we have a lot of opportunity in front of us as a procurement function, but we need to challenge the status quo. By focusing on the same things that we have always done is more likely to lead to us becoming irrelevant than a strategic business partner. Enter, The Procurement Revolution.
Kelly and I have started to finalize the themes within the Procurement Revolution, and there is one that we wanted to enlist your help with today. Listen in to today's Art of Procurement show to find out how you can help shape the Revolution!
Think of the handful of supplier agreements that you have that are fundamental to your business operations and strategy. How many of your most material supplier relationships are based on leverage, power dynamics and a zero sum game?
Today's guest is Kate Vitasek, Founder of the Vested business methodology. Kate provides real world examples as I ask how we, as procurement professionals, can put these rules in to practice and create relationships based on the notion of shared value. The result: a supply based that enables our stakeholders to “win” at what it is that they do to contribute to the competitive advantage of our organizations.
For more information, visit: http://artofprocurement.com/vested
At some point in time, we all come to a crossroads. A decision has to be made between two paths that has long term implications on the direction of our careers.
I have encountered a number of these crossroads throughout my career to date. In today's show, I share three such examples, the decisions I took (and why), and then I reflect on the lessons that I learned so that you don't have to make the same mistakes as I did!
For more information, go to http://artofprocurement.com/careercrossroads
With procurement talent at a premium, and the skills required to be successful rapidly evolving, professional development has arguably never been so important within our field. But, are old world methods of learning such as classroom training dead?
Mark Pollack, Vice President of SIG University is an expert in adult education. In today's episode, Mark shares why ongoing development is so important, along with the keys to delivering training programs that inspire and motivate professionals to engage in the developmental opportunities provided to them.
For more information, visit http://artofprocurement.com/education
In today’s Art of Procurement, I share how the concept of demand management came to the front of my mind while out shopping for birthday presents for my son last weekend.
I then discuss five different ways in which procurement can help our organizations reduce their overall expenditure by managing demand rather than reducing supplier profit margins.
For more information, visit http://artofprocurement.com/demandmanagement
Where do you go for supplier information if you are asked to lead a sourcing project for a product or service you are unfamiliar with?
Stephany Lapierre, my guest on today’s Art of Procurement show, is the expert in Supplier Discovery. First Stephany founded Matchbook, a consulting firm helping biotech firms identify and source hard to find suppliers to meet very specific needs. Following customer demand, she then built and launched tealbook, an online supplier knowledge management platform.
In today's show, Stephany shares the 10 most effective ways in which to identify qualified suppliers for your next sourcing event or category strategy.
For more information, go to: http://artofprocurement.com/supplierdiscovery
The makeup of the workforce is changing rapidly. Statistics show that organizations are looking to hire part-time, temporary words more than ever before, as they look to become more agile and reduce their fixed costs.
At the same time, the service industry and enabling technology that underpins the flow of contingent workers is undergoing a revolution. It feels like hardly a week goes by before I read about the launch of another platform, technology or partnership in the space.
So how can we make sense of all these moving parts, and enable our organizations take advantage of the future of work?
This is the topic of today’s show, with contingent workforce expert Terri Gallagher. This is the third in a three part series on contingent labor and procurement, and definitely the most thought provoking!
If you are a procurement professional with responsibility for shaping continent labor strategies, or a consultant who wants to learn how organizations will be buying your services in the future, today’s show is a must listen!
For more information, visit http://artofprocurement.com/futureofwork
David Hearn is on a mission to help forward thinking procurement leaders transform their procurement organizations from being tactical to strategic. As a practitioner, he has led three different organizations - Juniper, Kaiser Permanente and Sun Microsystems, through this transformation journey.
In today's Art of Procurement, David shares what he has learned from his experiences to date - what works, and what does not - and he discusses the importance that technology plays in driving the changes that are necessary for a transformation program to be successful.
For more information, visit http://artofprocurement.com/transformation