Strategic Sourcing

Opportunity Assessment and Sourcing Project Flow

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SIG University Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program graduate Shridhar Kundaram shares his perspective on a four-step sourcing process that can help take your sourcing team to the next level.


Sourcing is a process that involves finding, selecting, evaluating, and managing suppliers for day-to-day and long-term purposes for goods and services needed in the organization/company. Sourcing will succeed if it has executive leadership support, collaboration with stakeholders, robust control of spending and policies, automation, and an approach clearly defined for categories. Sourcing involves four significant steps AssessAnalyzeExecute and Evaluate.

 

Shridhar Kundaram, Senior Analyst, CDK Global India Pvt Ltd.

Sourcing Change Management

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SIG University Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program graduate Larry Trawick shares how excellent communication is vital in ensuring success and how important it is to incorporate effective change into your sourcing practices.

Larry Trawick, Senior Sourcing Analyst, Polaris Industries

Sourcing In the Midst of a Pandemic

Sourcing Strategies

SIG University Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program graduate Daniel Coggins shares how his organiztion has adapted their sourcing strategies to best suit the current challenges the pandemic has created for the sourcing world.

Daniel Coggins, Strategic Sourcing team, American Tire Distributors

From The Outside-In

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SIG University Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program graduate Tracie Ninh shares an outside perspective for integrating the best sourcing practices into your team.

Tracie Ninh, Vice President Supplier Diversity Specialist, BNY Mellon

Building The Right Center Of Excellence For You

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SIG University Certified Intelligent Automation Professional (CIAP) program graduate Nick Fratto discusses how building a center of excellence for your organization can serve as a backbone for process automation projects.

Nick Fratto, Sales Enablement Specialist, Sourcing Industry Group

The Better Method

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SIG University Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program graduate Nancy Wieskus shares the "Better Method" for procurement teams to implement into their procurement system.


The hybrid procurement method combines a central procurement base with subject matter experts (SMEs) already in each department to balance stakeholders' functionalities and strategic sourcing, which gives the business the best of both worlds. 

Centralized purchasing or Procurement is a system in which one department manages the purchasing of goods and services for the entire organization. The purchasing department is usually located in the organization's headquarters, where it operates the purchasing for all the branches in the firm. Advantages of central purchasing include reducing redundant work, lowering costs associated with training and supporting additional staff, and better controls. Disadvantages may be that the category manager may not be a subject matter expert in the particular category. It may take longer to complete a contract as Procurement takes a strategic approach. Also, stakeholders may be resentful in introducing other vendors into the mix.

Decentralized Procurement, on the other hand, allows individual stakeholders to make purchases for their departments. This, too, can have its advantages. Decentralization brings the decision-making process closer to the scene of action. This leads to quicker decision-making at the lower level since decisions do not have to be referred up through the hierarchy. Disadvantages are lower cost savings, competitive edge, reduced workload, and strategic advantage. 

Nancy Wieskus, Lead Category Manager, Valley. Bank

The Importance of Stakeholder Relationship Management

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SIG University Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program graduate Patrick Fifer shares how important it is to manage your direct stakeholder relationships in the sourcing world.


Throughout the Certified Sourcing Professional program, stakeholder management was a critical aspect interwoven throughout the lessons. It is the area that I would like to focus on for my blog submission. As a sourcing professional, it is of the utmost importance to manage each of your stakeholder relationships equally to ensure that your categories' sourcing process is maintained appropriately. A consistent approach to managing each of your stakeholder relationships will help to avoid the exclusion of the sourcing professional due to the stakeholder:

Patrick Fifer, Category Procurement Manager, CoStar Group, Inc.

Sustainable Sourcing 101

An image of a sustainable forest with the sun coming through the trees.

The concept of sustainable sourcing, also known as green purchasing or social sourcing, is nothing new. Sustainable sourcing is impacting nearly every area of corporate business and the consumer’s mindset. Everything from sourcing materials, talent attraction and consumer purchasing habits is changing because of sustainable sourcing growth. However, the term gets thrown around in the procurement industry quite often and is often misunderstood or misused. So, here’s a guide with all the basics you need to know about sustainable sourcing.  

WHAT IS SUSTAINABLE SOURCING

First and foremost, we have to define the term. Sustainable sourcing is the integration of social, ethical and environmental performance factors into the process of selecting suppliers. It includes purchasing sustainably preferable products and services (products made from recycled or remanufactured materials), as well as green purchasing guidelines that might pertain to certain products or commodities.  

Heather Schleicher, Chief Marketing Officer

Getting Optimal Results from Complex Categories: Sourcing Optimization

sourcing optimization for procurement

SIG University Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program graduate Tim Johnson details the power of true sourcing optimization within the organization.


It is incredible how many companies are still using a basic RFP platform with minimal scope for optimization. Even the platform Excel has no capacity for optimization or sourcing processes to manage the sourcing of highly complex categories. None of these methods can deliver any substantial savings or ROI.

A simple and easy-to-use sourcing platform is all you would need – even if you are not a sourcing specialist – for a three-bids-and-a-buy sourcing project to source a single item. But if you have hundreds of suppliers and thousands of possible scenarios, a simple platform does not make the grade. As for trying to manage (and more importantly, analyze) complex sourcing events in Excel, that will require a full-time mathematical genius or a team of full-time employees for weeks or months on end trying to figure out the best outcomes. 

To manage the sourcing of complex categories and create business value, you absolutely must use a solution that takes full advantage of the power of optimization complemented with artificial intelligence and game theory.  

To be “complex” in the sense of the word here, a sourcing category needs to meet some combination of the following criteria:

Tim Johnson, Sales Director, JAGGAER

The Role of Governance in Supplier Diversity Initiatives

The supplier community plays an integral role in improving enterprise diversity standing.

The supplier community plays an integral role in improving enterprise diversity standing. I’d like to share some observations from my career, along with tips for the supplier community and enterprise procurement teams to improve diverse supplier access, expand opportunities and provide support.

A Risky Approach to Client Management

Historically, client management and sales practices have been disjointed and focused on winning by dividing and conquering. A generation of sales teams has been trained to get as much information as possible out of the client organization to sell them what they have, instead of what the client needs, and have been somewhat siloed in the process.

In large supplier organizations, clients doing business with them on the applications side would struggle to engage from the marketing or infrastructure side. This short-sided view usually led to the client chasing the supplier organization to find the right resources.

The "whole client" management approach is necessary to transform the sales process to fit the more modern and sophisticated enterprise customers. Not having a modern sales approach is one area where clients, both Procurement and business stakeholders, get incredibly frustrated when dealing with a supplier organization. Many of the practices considered “old-school sales tactics” have become relatively visible to the enterprise client. For example, taking enterprise employees (particularly business stakeholders) to lunches or dinners at fancy restaurants, sporting events in private boxes and conferences in an attempt to build relationships, with a focus on gaining commitment to sales, early visibility and access to opportunities.

Purvee Kondal, Senior Director of Technology & Engineering Sourcing

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