The Fall Global Executive Summit was one of the most well-attended Summits to date. With record attendance, compelling thought leaders, the first-ever Innovation Hall and a glitzy night recognizing the Future of Sourcing Award winners, it was one for the books! During this year’s speed networking, a whopping 207 meetings were booked and this year’s prizes for raffle winners were really spectacular, including a $5,000 donation to the winner’s charity of choice from Givewith, one of our newest social impact provider companies.
Fall Summit Recap
The general session keynotes kept audiences engaged and our thought leaders answered some really great questions from the audience. Coupa’s CEO Rob Bernshteyn talked about how data, AI and community intelligence are impacting procurement; a panel of experts from Bank of Canada, PwC, Adobe and Boeing discussed tried and true best practices to be better at your job; the panel with LeaseAccelerator on upcoming changes to leasing standards elicited lots of discussion; and Kate Renwick-Espinosa closed us out with a look inside VSP Global’s inspiring company culture and commitment to fiscal fitness.
One of the most buzzed about events at the Summit was Innovation Hall where provider companies that are utilizing AI and machine learning for everything from talent management to contract writing and negotiations networked with attendees while the Future of Sourcing Awards talks took place alongside them. It was great to see everyone’s gears turning as they talked about common challenges, potential solutions and learned more about opportunities available to them.
SIG is excited to present an Innovation Hall at the Fall 2019 Summit. The Innovation Hall introduces attendees to the latest tools, technologies and solutions available for sourcing professionals in one place. Plus – attendees can request meetings directly with sponsors to see their industry-leading solutions up close!
Vision is a funny thing. Until relatively recently, humans were at the mercy of circumstance when it came to sight – if you had 2020 vision, you were lucky, but if not, you had no choice but to hope for the best. Then, glasses, telescopes and microscopes were invented. Then, flashlights. Suddenly, we could see very near and very far, and even in the dark. With the right tools, our world was transformed.
Similarly, visibility in business is transforming with technology. In the past, we used notebooks and spreadsheets to transfer information. Today, we’ve seen customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP), and human capital management (HCM) software take off and transform the level of visibility within the business, allowing for unprecedented impact. Now, it’s Sourcing’s turn to transform and break free of spreadsheets and cumbersome legacy tools.
VSP Global Looks to Transform Sourcing
At VSP Global, the largest not-for-profit vision benefits provider in the United States, this sourcing transformation was a key priority. VSP serves over 77 million members by focusing on quality and affordability in eye care insurance, high-quality eyewear, ophthalmic technology and connected doctor-patient experiences.
To continue delivering the best results for their members, VSP Global set out to transform the way it approached the procurement process to drive better business outcomes, increasing stakeholder collaboration and visibility across the enterprise. The procurement team aligned on prioritizing four specific processes:
Stan Garber, President and Co-Founder at Scout RFP
I should know – I lived through a very painful and protracted software audit at my current company, Russell Investments, an audit that lasted over eight months from start to end. While the software provider (who I will not name) was completely within their contractual rights, I learned a lot from the experience and would like to share that experience with you – so you can learn from what we did right, and what we did wrong. For the purposes of this blog and my presentation at SIG’s Fall Global Executive Summit, I will call this software provider “Skynet,” but rest assured the real name of the company is one you would easily recognize.
Software audits never happen at a convenient time. Our situation started in late November 2018, near the end of our fiscal year. Our various business groups were scrambling to get their purchase orders approved and issued by year end. Any remaining budget dollars were being used to get a head start on the next fiscal year.
Skynet sent a letter to our CFO saying that we had been “selected” to receive a software license review. The word “audit” was never used in the letter. Audits are highly profitable for software companies – companies can operate within their contractual rights, as audits have a high ROI. Why? Because most clients do not have a firm grasp on the number of software licenses purchased or deployed (either on-prem or in the cloud).
Kate Renwick-Espinosa is the President of VSP Vision Care, a national not-for-profit vision company. At SIG's Fall Global Executive Summit, Kate will highlight how organizations can adopt a culture of fiscal fitness through impactful activities, engaging content pushed through a variety of communication channels, and a tighter alignment between leadership and different groups. Leveraging more than 27 years of optical and leadership experience, she’s energized by helping people see and feels fortunate to work for a company with similar “care and service” values. She’s accountable and committed to growing VSP membership and product and service offerings to meet diverse consumer needs and VSP’s client base.
Can you share a little more about your day-to-day role and responsibilities as the President of VSP Vision Care?
Helping people see is what motivates me every day. My primary focus is to help lead the direction and key efforts for the company that continue to grow and strengthen our VSP membership. This means we’re aligned and structured to be wherever the customer is making their vision care “purchase” and “care” decisions. Our product and service offerings must meet diverse and personalized consumer needs as well as VSP’s client base both domestic and international. And, they must be straight-forward and easy to use!
I also work closely with our CEO, and entire leadership team, to ensure our growing company is connected and supporting our common goals and essentials as well as delivering a consistent and competitive marketplace presence. Together we ensure that when we all show up to work that we clearly understand where we’re trying to get to and how we make a difference. Collectively across our six lines of business, we’re delivering the kind of personalized eye care experience that creates members for life!
New technology, competitive drive and the desire to upend the status quo to influence innovation and enhance value are important characteristics for sourcing and procurement professionals in today’s world. As the digital transformation continues to accelerate at an unprecedented and exciting pace, SIG wants to recognize the change makers, movers and shakers who show innovation, leadership and transformation in areas critical to the sourcing industry.
This week, SIG announced the finalists for the second annual Future of Sourcing Awards taking place at the Fall Global Executive Summit in Carlsbad, California, on October 16. A panel of senior executives judged nominees in eight team categories and two individual categories. The teams and individuals listed below demonstrated ingenuity, initiative and innovation and showed the greatest achievements in terms of fundamentally changing the nature of their business and/or industry.
The SIGInnova Product Forum is today at 3 pm. Buy-side attendees will interact with the latest sourcing technologies and see how they can drive strategic impact, improve profits and mitigate risk. Participants will be exposed to innovative and disruptive products that can help shape the future of Procurement.
The Future of Sourcing Awards program celebrates individuals and companies that are transforming, innovating and leading the sourcing and outsourcing industry. The Awards recognize team accomplishments in the following critical categories:
Third Party Management
The winner of each award will represent the best example of innovation in each category, showing the greatest achievement in terms of fundamentally changing the nature of their business. In addition, the event will include two individual awards—the Rising Star and Sourcing Star awards to recognize individuals who have demonstrated ingenuity, initiative and innovation in their careers.
Presenting at an industry event is an important step in any professional's career. It is also an excellent opportunity to promote, showcase and reward a team for a job well-done. But most importantly, it is a critical factor in keeping an industry relevant, competitive and strong. Every professional worth their salt should consider it their duty to share their successes and failures.
Of course, in order to present at an industry event, you must first submit a proposal in the form of a session abstract. Sourcing professionals are well versed in writing business cases and category strategies, and we have all read our fair share of good and bad proposals. However, when it comes to writing a speaking proposal, many sourcing professionals don’t give it the time or energy it deserves. These abstracts are often used as written to describe your session, and if the goal is to share your thought leadership, you will want to make sure your abstract gets your audience’s attention. Consider the following five tips to write a compelling proposal for your next industry event.
To write a good proposal, first define your objective for presenting to help drive the format and content. You may decide to present to showcase you or your team's achievements and thereby gain recognition. Or you may use the opportunity to establish yourself as a thought leader on a particular subject. Presenting in a room of peers or potential clients can also help you better understand the trends in your industry and the needs of your customers.
Mary Zampino, Senior Director of Global Sourcing Intelligence
I’m proud to say the feedback from delegates on the Fall Global Executive Summit is some of the best I’ve received for any Summit yet. The beautiful Omni Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa was the perfect destination to engage with our cutting-edge keynote panelists, along with hands-on learning in how-to labs, breakout sessions and outdoor networking with a breathtaking view of the mountains. But what excited me the most at this Summit was the inaugural Future of Sourcing Awards, where we recognized individuals and teams who are making a transformative impact on the industry.
Future of Sourcing Awards
The energy at the Future of Sourcing Awards was electric! It was inspiring to be in the presence of both the titans who have helped shape the industry, the leaders who are taking sourcing and procurement to the next level, along with the up-and-coming talent that is our future.
It was my extreme pleasure to present SIG’s original founder, Barry Wiegler, with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Barry gave a moving speech and was even surprised by his daughter and grandson who flew in for the special occasion. There was barely a dry eye in the room.