Tag Archives: Strategic Sourcing

News You Can Use: 9/8/2016

sn_buildings_Rikki Chan

  • 3 Examples of When Being Cheap Is Costly for Your Business

    Your employees are critical to the success of your business. Their skills affect the quality of your products or services. And since they interact with customers, clients and vendors, they are the ambassadors of your company. You get what you pay for. Investing more money in your employees can help avoid damage to your business reputation.

    If you need additional help in the future, you can bring in some entry-level workers, knowing you invested in a core staff with knowledge and skills to train them. In fact, fewer well-paid employees can often do the jobs of many lesser-paid ones.

    Moreover, it is very costly, both in real dollars and opportunity costs, to retrain employees. Be willing to pay a bit more to hire and retain people with core shared values and great work ethics.


  • How to give a great research talk

  • How To Build A High-Performance Sourcing Department

    There are times when sourcing staff can feel overwhelmed with work. If a sourcing leader sees their staff drowning in a high req load; it would be a good idea for that leader to roll up their sleeves and help their employees out. Not only will the employee respect their manager’s success at filling reqs; this approach can help reduce the turnover of over-worked sourcers. To quote Vince Lombardi, “Leaders are made, they are not born. They are made by hard effort, which is the price which all of us must pay to achieve any goal that is worthwhile.”


  • Why Middle Managers Are Secretly the Superheroes of the Workplace

    Managers already have considerable control over employee engagement efforts. We don’t see any reason for this trend not to continue, especially with the number of middle managers working in the U.S. and around the world (The Economist reported in 2011 that Lloyd’s Banking Group would layoff 15,000 middle managers — which begs the question how many they had in total).


  • 7 Steps to a Perfectly Written Business Plan

    Whether you’re sharing your plan with an investor, customer, or team member, your plan needs to show that you’re passionate, dedicated, and actually care about your business and the plan. You could discuss the mistakes that you’ve learned, the problems that you’re hoping to solve, listing your values, and what makes you stand out from the competition.


Photo: Rikki Chan

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News You Can Use: 11/25/2015

sn_starrysky_Patrick Hendry

  • Why Your First Generation Sourcing Platform Is Not Ready For Modern Sourcing

    Many organizations that acquired these suites and applied them successfully saw year-after-year returns of 10%+ on the spend brought under management. And a few are even seeing some savings today, but just like the second auction saw little savings and the third auction saw a price increase, the year-over-year return is dropping. Why? Because while these first generation platforms were infinitely more powerful than anything that had come before, they weren’t designed to capture the full extent of complexity in an average category — complexity that has been considerably increased since the early days of sourcing due to increased outsourcing, increased globalization, increased regulation, and a constantly evolving global marketplace.


  • How to Be Promotable

    Anybody (well, almost anybody) can do what they’re told. To get promoted, you have to go above and beyond. Taking on additional responsibilities without being asked is not only a great way to demonstrate your work ethic, energy, and skills, but it also lets your boss know that you’re ready (and able) to expand your scope. When you take on more than the norm, your boss can’t help but think that you’re capable of a bigger role. This includes showing that you’re willing to take risks by making innovative suggestions.


  • Third of supply chain processes ‘inadequate’

    The findings also revealed that Europe and North America appeared to lag behind the developing world in terms of “process maturity” when comparing weighted averages, with fewer companies reaching the basic competency level. Some 32 per cent of firms’ processes in Europe and North America were found to be inadequate compared to 22 per in developing countries. This “surprising result” could reflect the tendency of processes to get worse over time and may also be a result of the move of manufacturing out of the old markets and the removal of good process discipline from those markets, the research suggested.


  • Paris attacks demand ‘wake-up call’ on smartphone encryption

    “A lot of people in these terror groups have developed encryption techniques, and France has one of the most sophisticated systems for monitoring communications. If France didn’t pick up this attack in advance, it’s a wake-up call for all of us,” said Darren Hayes, assistant professor and director of cybersecurity at Pace University.

    Encrypted messages reportedly helped ISIS hide communications prior to the attacks, keeping security agencies from any advance warning of what was being planned. Some experts have blamed the attacks on the growth of cheap or free smartphone apps like WhatsApp or Chatsource that encrypt messages.


  • How to Power Through the Day Without Any Sleep

    Hanging around the coffee machine all day isn’t going to do much to give you sustained energy to make it through the day. While you may think gulping down caffeine will help you feel more alert, too much caffeine can cause you to feel jittery and anxious rather than focused. Dr. Lichten says 50mg to 100mg of caffeine is the optimal dose for alertness and focus. Opt for a short cup of coffee every four hours during the day, stopping at 4pm to prevent another poor night of sleep.


  • A Race To The Bottom Or To Strategic Business Partner?

    This reaches far beyond top level competitor intelligence. This is the granular level information that can directly impact the financials of your organization. A good example of this would be working with sales teams. They will generally know the strengths and weaknesses of key competitors and their products. They may even know recent wins/losses of the key competitors. However, when you can work with them and let them know which individuals have recently left or are looking to leave the competitor and how this could impact the competitors delivery, this could have a genuine impact on the business. For example, if a Program Director has recently left a competitor, what was their succession plan? How will this impact the competitor’s delivery on future programs?


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News You Can Use: 9/16/2015

sn_ferris_Skitter Photo

  • Strategic Or Tactical: Time To Decide And Act
    If you have been reading this blog for the last two years, I have been shouting this.  This short post sums up my views on strategic sourcing.

    IT could well be an ally too, particularly in efforts to ensure cyber security and take advantage of the analytics possibilities with big data. And engineering could learn to appreciate procurement’s value too. While engineers may think they know the capabilities of some part suppliers, they may not know of the capacity constraints those suppliers have that can prevent them from delivering on time. Procurement should know about those constraints through its studies of the suppliers’ markets and industries.


  • Screwing up the Screw-Ups in BI

    Right! Except that the Holy Grail of trying to extend a “centralized” database umbrella over completely disparate systems is both incredibly expensive and nearly impossible. Baseline suggests “[partnering] with a reputable systems integrator.” Good for them — at least they dodge this bullet rather than getting the answer completely wrong. The right answer is that business analysts should be able to construct BI datasets on their own, as needed, from whatever data sources are useful/appropriate, and it shouldn’t be difficult for them to do so. Concentrating all of the information under one umbrella isn’t necessary; many umbrellas can do the job, and if they’re easy to deploy, they’re both inexpensive and provide a better and more flexible answer.


  • 4 Ways to Construct a ‘Data-Innovation’ Map for Your Business

    A data-innovation map can give you a bird’s-eye view of your customers’ experience and show you how you can be more innovative with data — not to mention save time and drive revenue. Without a data-innovation map, you’re likely missing out on places in your strategy where you could more effectively use data and inadvertently give your competition a leg up.


  • The journey from good to great

    Shrinking the pie also requires procurement professionals to hone and broaden their skill set. I think that one of the best characteristics for someone in procurement is ‘being nosey’ (or to say this more politely, ‘being curious’). This needs to extend and broaden if you are to shrink the pie. You need to be curious not only about the business need, the supply market and the total cost, but also about the interfaces between the supplier and the customer and the supplier and its suppliers.


  • Why You Should Not Build Your Own Contract Management System
    Interesting to see them list the core “must have features”

Photo: Skitter Photo, StockSnap

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The Supply Chain: 4/1/2015


  • Supply Chain News: Strategic Sourcing Software Enabling Companies to Continue to Raise the Bar on Capabilities, Gartner Says
  • Dunkin Donuts saves $114 million thanks to SCM cooperative

    Formed following the successful merger of five different operating companies in 2012, NDCP opened its corporate office in metro Atlanta in August 2013 as a more geographically central location to support customer expansion plans and access best-in-class supply chain resources. Leveraging more than 30 years of proven expertise in sourcing, purchasing and distribution, the organisation is passionate about delivering the best service and products at the lowest sustainable price to members.


  • Resetting supplier relationships should be top of the board agenda

    Procurement has often been viewed as the poor relation when it comes to business strategy, but there is clear evidence that corporate reputation and customer satisfaction can be directly affected by poor or non-strategic purchasing decisions. For example, an organisation we have worked with took a strategic decision never to charge a customer for speaking to the customer service department, only to discover some months later that one of its outsourced call centre providers was still using premium rate numbers. Clearly no one had told the procurement department about the strategic decision, let alone involved them in formulating the strategy in the first place. Being more joined up can only be good for business


  • Procurement professionals split on how to tackle maverick spend

    Almost one third (31 per cent) of respondents from public and private sectors said control of indirect spend should be handed to the procurement function to solve the problem, even though indirect costs appear to be the shared responsibility of a number of different departments within the respondent organisations: procurement (63 per cent), senior department heads (42 per cent), finance (39 per cent) and operational staff (25 per cent).


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