SIG Speaks Blog

SIG Speaks Weekly Briefing - November 25

Here's your weekly update on the latest thought leadership, networking events and training with SIG. 

2019 Annual Default Review

Download RapidRatings' 2019 Annual Default Review to find out the top five supplier red flags and top five industries to watch out for.

SIG Partners with Spend Matters

Tap into a wealth of benchmark data to identify which procurement software provider best meets your organization’s specific technology needs with Spend Matters' SolutionMap Accelerator. SIG buy-side members receive a 20% discount.

The Sourcing Industry Landscape Podcast

Join Dawn Tiura as she interviews Givewith CEO Paul Polizzotto. He discusses how corporate social responsibility initiatives can drive business value by boosting employee morale, retention rates and investor confidence.

Future of Sourcing Articles

A lot has been written about RPA’s ability to link processes and automate services, but much less has been dedicated to the benefits of RPA from a system engineering point of view. Learn more about how RPA technology can be utilized.

Technology can be a double-edged sword when it comes to communication. It can make us more connected but in the same regard disconnected when it comes to real in-person interactions. How do we as leaders maneuver this complicated new world?

Hailey Corr, Content Manger

How much do you know about your invisible workforce?

New research presents four key actions organizations can take to better manage services providers to achieve better business outcomes, maximize ROI and mitigate risk.

Your workforce is larger than you think. Look beyond your employees and contingent workers and you’ll realize there’s another large, powerful force at play. One that probably isn’t on your radar.

Services providers, such as consulting firms, marketing agencies and IT outsourcers, play a crucial role in helping organizations get work done. They are a vital part of today’s workforce, comprising nearly one-fifth of workforce spend, and bringing much-needed skills to the table. They carry out mission-critical work, often operating at the heart of the enterprise.

In the oil and gas industry, services providers play a major role in shutdown/turnarounds, which cost millions each day and must therefore be completed as soon as possible. Many organizations rely on consulting firms to help them build and execute their strategies – particularly around digital transformation. Banks engage IT consultancies to improve their online and mobile banking platforms and call centers to support their customers.

In many organizations, services providers operate as an invisible workforce. How can management ensure that this often-unseen workforce consistently delivers maximum value? And how can organizations make sure that workers’ access to confidential data and systems is turned off at the end of the engagement?

Molly Spatara, Global VP, Brand Experience, SAP Ariba and SAP Fieldglass

Talking to Your Tail Spend – Chapter 3: The Potential Risks Lurking in your Tail Spend

Unmanaged tail spend results in significant risks to organizations.

We’ve released a series of articles to answer your questions about tail spend. We started by defining tail spend, discussed how to better work with stakeholders to manage it, and now we’re diving into the potential risks lurking in your tail spend and the problem with taking a scorched Earth approach. To get up to speed, read our prologue, Chapter 1 and Chapter 2 on what this tail spend series will help you accomplish.

What is the risk exposure in my tail spend?

Risk is an increasingly important consideration in procurement and we’re right to think about the impact of risk hidden in our unmanaged spend. The tricky thing about risk is that it can differ across companies, even within the same industry. Supplier financial risk is important to most, but what about brand risk, geopolitical risk in the supply chain, and the risk of payment fraud? Depending on the spend category, IP risk or labor practice risk may also be a consideration.

The starting point, once again, is the spend analysis, with the category manager charged with determining the highest risks for their category. If a category isn’t actively managed, it can be assigned to a risk team for a basic analysis. Given that the average company only actively monitors about a quarter of suppliers for risk, there’s a lot of unwatched suppliers even outside the long tail. Risk assessments are typically driven by supplier spend or a triggering high-risk factor.

Amy Fong, Principal - Procurement and Purchase to Pay Advisory, The Hackett Group

SIG Speaks Weekly Briefing - November 18

Here's your weekly update on the latest thought leadership, networking events and training with SIG. 

A Report on Maverick Spend

The Hackett Group conducted a survey to gain insight into the strategic importance of maverick spend reduction, understand the adoption of specific procurement practices, and differentiate how top-performing organizations approach this topic.

Managing Spend within a Gig Economy

Coupa and Forrester have come together to provide an on-demand webinar on how to better source, procure and manage your contingent workforce within your increasing external services spend.

Join SIG's B2B Private Social Network on TraDove.com

On November 20 at 1pm learn more about how to connect and collaborate with the best-suited buyers and sellers worldwide using AI technology with SIG's B2B Private Social Network on TraDove.com.

Hailey Corr, Content Manger

SWOT Analysis: A Procurement Best Practice

SWOT Analysis graph

A Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) student rediscovers the benefit of SWOT analysis, a tried and true procurement best practice. In the CSP program, students focus on the hard and soft skills of sourcing, including strategic sourcing and outsourcing methodologies, as well as best practices in negotiations. 


It is common for many procurement professionals to lose sight of the basics and fall into a pattern of just following along with the habits they’ve built through the years. During SIG University’s Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program, I was able to take a step back and evaluate some best practices that seem to have fallen off in my procurement department.

Within my organization, as with many, there is a never-ending sense of urgency when internal stakeholders come to us with sourcing or contracting needs that they would like completed yesterday. By actively embracing SWOT analysis, procurement would be able to better serve its stakeholders. This analysis would provide better oversight of issues as they arise and increase the potential of solving business issues with enhanced results.

Sammi Kiesel, Strategic Sourcing Advisor

SIG Speaks Weekly Briefing - November 11

Here's your weekly update on the latest thought leadership, networking events and training with SIG. 

Procurement Experts Outlook 2019

As a procurement practitioner, you would be keen on chalking an all-encompassing procurement strategy. Download this eBook to gain the latest insights and views from the brightest minds in procurement.

2019 Annual Default Review

Download RapidRatings' 2019 Annual Default Review to find out the top five supplier red flags and top five industries to watch out for.

Northeastern Regional SIGnature Event

Join other sourcing professionals in Toronto on November 14 for a day of thought leadership and networking.

Future of Sourcing Articles

Read about these 5 strategies that can help distribution centers keep their competitive edge by protecting their core operations

Generally, there are four common mistakes that organizations make relating to real estate spend. Luckily, there are some best practices for overcoming these mistakes.

Hailey Corr, Content Manger

Talking to Your Tail Spend: Chapter 2 – 4 Tips to Work with Internal Stakeholders

Advice on how to work with internal stakeholders to manage tail spend

We’re releasing a series of articles to answer your questions about tail spend, starting with the basics so you understand what tail spend is and we’ll progress along the spectrum to help you manage it. To get up to speed, read our prologue and Chapter 1 on what this tail spend series will help you accomplish. In this chapter, we'll explore how to better communicate with stakeholders to get tail spend under control.


“Who purchased you and why?”

This is perhaps the most intriguing question and the right place to start when looking at tail spend. A spend analysis is often the first step in building a procurement capability, and if used on an ongoing basis, it can help to understand what spend consolidation efforts leave out. To accurately capture the full picture, analysis should pull in data from multiple sources, such as purchasing/payment systems, purchasing card data, travel and expense systems, and often multiple ERP systems, even petty cash if local branches still use it.  

Fortunately, there are many helpful tools on the market that range from free-for-use apps to complex software platforms enabled with artificial intelligence (AI). Nearly all of these will help with generating what we call a “spend cube,” which is an analysis, at the line-item level, of global spend. This can include:  

Amy Fong, Principal - Procurement and Purchase to Pay Advisory, The Hackett Group

Breathing New Life into Traditional Vendor Management

Vendor risk management is part of effective governance.

SIG University Certified Third Party Risk Management Professional (C3PRMP) Program graduate David England has noticed a decline in vendor management teams. He shares his thoughts on how the adoption of third-party risk management strategies by vendor management teams can help position them as a key asset and reverse their decline.

In the C3PRMP program, students focus on best and emerging practices to identify, assess, manage and control third-party risk throughout the lifecycle of relationships, and learn how to align risk fundamentals and frameworks with risk culture to develop the essential tools and controls for effective governance.


There is a growing awareness within the mainstream business community of the importance associated with effective third-party risk management – a capability that has been nicely incubating and maturing within heavily regulated industries, such as banking and financial services, for eons. This increased exposure and attention could be just what is needed to revitalize the flagging vendor management movement.

Many F500 organizations have well-established vendor management capabilities that spawned several decades ago with the onset of strategic process outsourcing and continue today as an effective operational strategy. Many organizations I have consulted with over the past 15 years benefit from these capabilities, which has helped them achieve the value intended from these important vendor relationships. These key capabilities include:

David England, Director, Governance Services at ISG

SIG Speaks Weekly Briefing - November 4

Here's your weekly update on the latest thought leadership, networking events and training with SIG. 

Learn Essential Capabilities for Modern Procurement and Finance

Most procurement and finance organizations struggle with data quality and visibility. Even the most sophisticated teams still find themselves stuck in a reactive mode. This eBook explores some of the technology trends and business practices that are helping to define a new, strategic role for procurement.

This Month at SIG

Take a dive into the Summit Anthology and Resource Guide to map your strategy for the coming year, catch up on some industry research, learn more about our new industry partnerships, with PeopleTicker and Spend Matters, and check out one of the many webinars happening this month.

Talking to Your Tail Spend: Chapter 1 - Why Don't You Call

When we talk about problematic tail spend, what we’re really talking about is unapproved supply sources. But tail spend is a cuter name.

Future of Sourcing Articles

Generally, there are four common mistakes that organizations make relating to real estate spend. Read more about some best practices for overcoming these mistakes

Hailey Corr, Content Manger

Who is Spend Matters, what is SolutionMap — and how can SIG members benefit?

SIG and SpendMatters Partnership

As part of Spend Matters' recently announced partnership with SIG, we’re excited to share exactly what Spend Matters brings to the table (deep insights into procurement software) and why that matters Spend Matters 12 SolutionMap Categoriesfor SIG members.

Spend Matters reaches a global audience of procurement professionals and provides coverage of procurement software and services vendors across the source-to-pay spectrum and other areas, like contingent workforce and AP automation. You can find many of the key players in the Spend Matters Almanac, a directory of 500+ vendors and consultants in procurement.

Through SolutionMap, anyone doing a procurement technology selection can explore 12 categories to get a snapshot of those markets for absolutely no cost. Players are ranked in areas like Source-to-Pay (S2P), E-Procurement, Contract Lifecycle Management, Sourcing, Supplier Management and more.

SolutionMap helps procurement organizations save time in their technology RFP processes by relying on the Spend Matters analyst team, who have already assessed capabilities at a granular level, validating them through live demos. Because technology is developed and updated so quickly these days, SolutionMap is updated quarterly.

Carina Kuhl, Chief Marketing Officer, Managing Director, Spend Matters

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