For CPOs, Building a Foundation for Excellence Starts with Spend Visibility
Guest Post: SpendHQ welcomes the thoughts and insights of Andrew Bartolini, Chief Research Officer at Ardent Partners.
Building a Foundation for Excellence Starts with Spend Visibility
As we discussed in Ardent Partners’ new report and webinar entitled, Spend Analysis: The Foundation for Procurement Excellence, the value proposition of automated spend analysis is quite broad and can impact almost every facet of the modern-day procurement operation. The report also makes the argument that spend visibility can positively impact almost every facet of the modern-day procurement operation. Let’s look at how spend visibility can impact sourcing.
Within the procurement realm, executives have a variety of ways to improve the entire supply management program. Investments in technology, staff, and specific competencies can all contribute to driving dollars to the bottom-line; while improving process efficiencies, and gaining spend visibility can offer a range of benefits that cascade across the source-to-settle process. But for many, the clearest and most direct path to make an impact on business results and operations, while engaging line of business leaders is through successful sourcing initiatives.
Sourcing more, faster has long been procurement’s path to greater influence and savings. The impact from high volume sourcing can be a ‘game-changer’ for the Chief Procurement Officer and the sourcing team. This is because procurement’s ability to establish trust and collaboration with the business often starts with a successful sourcing project. The information required for high-quality sourcing efforts is gleaned through a variety of sources, particularly spend analysis and, of course, direct communication and collaboration with the category’s key stakeholders. The ability to work with stakeholders to understand a category’s use and value to the business and then rationalize and communicate category requirements to the supply base is critical to the success of any sourcing project.
But, once a sourcing organization has matured, it must shift its focus from increasing sourcing volume (speed) to increasing sourcing quality (agility) if it is to maintain its momentum and continue to drive more value in the future. I recently interviewed the Chief Procurement Officer of a Fortune 100 Co. about the importance of sourcing agility. “Our customers are demanding more responsiveness so we need to make sure that our suppliers are part of the solution and not part of the problem,” he told me. This CPO believes his team is ahead of the game in its engagement with the business because it has been able to support all of their sourcing needs with a robust and efficient sourcing operation and clear visibility into spend. “Our ability to quickly re-source a category or add a requirement based on some change in the business is something we pride ourselves in. We use our expertise to stay on top of market changes and we use our spend analysis tools to support all sourcing.” The CPO also noted that this sourcing agility puts the department in a better position to tackle corporate initiatives.
Best-in-Class sourcing leaders increasingly understand that while speed is good, agility is better. But the fact is that whether a procurement team is seeking to source more or source better, neither is achievable without spend visibility. And since spend visibility remains a critical element to Best-in-Class procurement performance, selecting the right spend analysis technology has never been more important to a business. Utilizing the criteria and recommendations discussed in our new report will help procurement organizations build a foundation of excellence. Click here to read the report.
About the Author
Andrew Bartolini is the Chief Research Officer at Ardent Partners, an analyst firm focused on the intersection of technology and best practices within the procurement and supply chain industry. Ardent Partners actively covers the supply management solutions marketplace and produces research to help business decision-makers understand the technology landscape and identify the best-fit solution(s) for their specific needs. They believe their team’s first-hand experience evaluating, developing, packaging, deploying, and using supply management solutions on behalf of enterprises in the Global 2000 and public sector makes them eminently qualified to advise our clients to make smart decisions in this area.
SpendHQ is a spend analysis solution that provides rapid, accurate and detailed visibility into enterprise spend data. This full-service SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) spend analytics solution delivers actionable insight for sourcing and procurement professionals.
Recognized for innovation and industry impact in the procurement space, SpendHQ was named to the 2015 Red Herring Global 100 list, and listed as a finalist in the CODiE 2016 Awards as a “Best Supply Chain Management” solution. With SpendHQ at their fingertips, clients ranging from Fortune 500s to mid-market companies are finally able to see their enterprise spend clearly and drive savings confidently.
As a standalone extension of Insight Sourcing Group, SpendHQ is built by industry leaders with unmatched sourcing knowledge. Inc. Magazine has ranked Insight Sourcing Group among the fastest-growing private companies in America every year since 2008. In 2015, Insight Sourcing Group was also named the #1 Boutique Consulting Firm in the U.S. by Vault.com and the #1 Small Strategy Firm by Consulting Magazine.