Sourcing

The Five Key Factors to Minimize Uncertainty & Maximize the Value of Your Sourcing Spend

sourcing inflation

Is inflation on your mind? You’re not alone. Rising costs lead to rising overhead—and rising stress about sourcing. 

Not only is it more expensive to get crucial goods and services today, but supply chain issues and labor shortages create extensive delays. These disruptions significantly affect large and small companies' production and inventory. 

Plus, rising fuel costs mean that getting everything from hand soap to building supplies requires an even bigger financial commitment, which could be going toward marketing, R&D, or expansion.

And yet, despite all the talk about the financial impact of inflation on sourcing, there’s an important point missing. 

Inflation, at its core, isn’t really about money. It’s about uncertainty. 

This is good news because organizations that solve for uncertainty can maximize value and thrive despite economic change.

How to Mitigate Uncertainty

There are five key factors that are crucial to navigating sourcing uncertainty when inflation, supply chain issues, fuel shortages, and labor issues mean certain goods and services are in short supply.

First, companies that can see what’s available and act quickly have a significant edge. Agility and increased visibility are key competitive advantages.

So is having the right partners. Solid relationships with a variety of vetted and trusted suppliers not only make it easier to purchase what’s needed. These relationships also significantly mitigate risk, reducing the likelihood of overcharging or receiving poor-quality goods and services. 

Third, having the ability to easily participate in community buys can dramatically increase leverage, reducing costs and increasing purchasing power. 

Prashanth Ravishankar, Vice President, Coupa

This Month at SIG – November 2022

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

With inflation challenges and a looming recession, we have the resources procurement leaders need to get a jump start on 2023!


November Microlearning Event

On November 9, Angela Easterwood from Majel Partners and Elizabeth Zucker from The Hackett Group, will share how flawless category management can be leveraged to address today’s dynamic sourcing challenges. 

Join your sourcing, procurement, and risk management colleagues in this two-hour interactive virtual environment to be challenged with topics related to our industries!

 

Northeastern Regional SIGnature Event

SIG's Northeastern Regional SIGnature event is almost here! The event will take place in Toronto, CA and includes a fantastic agenda with some of the best thought leaders in the industry. The day will include an Executive Roundtable, General Session Speakers (offering training and practical, implementable tools), CPO Presentations, Analyst Overviews, SIG Talks and close with a networking happy hour.

Join us for this great day of networking and learning!

Desmond Williams, Digital Marketing Manager

7 Creative Hiring Strategies to Build Your Procurement Team

7 Creative Hiring Strategies for Building Your Procurement Team

As a procurement professional, you know that talent in procurement has been a hot topic in recent years. Here at WNS-Denali, we have seen more organizations grapple with talent issues, so we decided to dive deeper into the key talent concerns for retail companies at SIG’s Global Executive Summit a little while back.

>>Looking for a new job or to hire top procurement talent? Visit SIG's Career Network!<< 

The all-star packed panel with procurement leaders from some of the largest retail brands in the world came together to such questions as:

  • How does your hiring profile differ now and why? 

  • Where are you finding your talent? 

  • What are you looking for in new hires? 

  • Specialist or generalist, which is a better hiring strategy for your team?

Even if you work at a company beyond the retail industry, these questions and the learnings from the panel still apply to your company. As you strive to gain a competitive advantage and influence more spend strategically, refreshing your approach to talent can make a big impact. Below are the top seven creative hiring strategies that came from our panel of retail experts.

Hire from within

This classic retail trick applies to all industries. Promoting from other areas of business up into a corporate role brings a wealth of knowledge and perspective on the core business and ability to relate to stakeholders. Most importantly, it will add a level of credibility to your procurement team.

David Gonzalez, Director, Procurement Services, Denali - A WNS Company

This Month at SIG – September 2022

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

As procurement leaders continue to navigate varying crises of 2022, we have a host of events and resources on deck to keep your team at the forefront of best practices!


Global Executive Summit

Prepare yourself and your team for the future of sourcing at the SIG PGlobal Executive Summit October 17-19, 2022! 

Get ready for amazing keynote sessions, a chance to engage and learn from the brightest industry experts, speed networking, and experience live solution deep-dives from best-in-class providers. Registration is open now!

 

Western Regional SIGnature Event

SIG's Western Regional SIGnature event is almost here! The event will take place in Bellevue, WA and includes a fantastic agenda with some of the best thought leaders in the industry. The day will include an Executive Roundtable, General Session Speakers (offering training and practical, implementable tools), CPO Presentations, Analyst Overviews, SIG Talks and close with a networking happy hour.

Join us for this great day of networking and learning!

Desmond Williams, Digital Marketing Manager

This Month at SIG – August 2022

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

As procurement leaders continue to navigate varying crises of 2022, we have a host of events and resources on deck to keep your team at the forefront of best practices!


August Microlearning Event

SIG's On May 18, TD Bank experts, Associate Vice President Michele Wesseling and Head of Cyber Controls Testing Neha Mudalgikar, as they explore cyber risk in today's constantly evolving landscape. 

Join your sourcing, procurement, and risk management colleagues in this two-hour interactive virtual environment to be challenged with topics related to our industries!

 
 

Global Executive Summit

Prepare yourself and your team for the future of sourcing at the SIG PGlobal Executive Summit October 17-19, 2022! 

Get ready for amazing keynote sessions, a chance to engage and learn from the brightest industry experts, speed networking, and experience live solution deep-dives from best-in-class providers. Registration is open now!

 

Western Regional SIGnature Event

SIG's Western Regional SIGnature event is almost here! The event will take place in Bellevue, WA and includes a fantastic agenda with some of the best thought leaders in the industry. The day will include an Executive Roundtable, General Session Speakers (offering training and practical, implementable tools), CPO Presentations, Analyst Overviews, SIG Talks and close with a networking happy hour.

Desmond Williams, Digital Marketing Manager

This Month at SIG – July 2022

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

The second half of 2022 is continuing to force procurement leaders to navigate varying crises. Strategies now weigh less on cost and more in favor of supply assurance. We have a host of resources, insights and events to get you prepared!


July CPO & Executive Virtual Series

SIG's CPO & Executive Virtual Series is an opportunity for the most senior procurement executives to gather with their peers in an interactive virtual environment to discuss their most pressing issues. On July 20, Richard Elmore, CPO from The Penn State University, will be joined by AArete experts Tyler Higgins, Gaurav Joshi and John Marchisin. They will explore how to adapt your supply chain for diversity and sustainability. We will close the day with a topic-based roundtable discussion. 

Join us for this collaborative and very personal conversation!

 
 

Power Hour Webinars

Emerging Strategies to Level Up Your CW Program

During this webinar, learn how contingent workforce owners are using technology to bridge the gap and communicate with all parties successfully.

Desmond Williams, Digital Marketing Manager

The Magical CPO

Chief Procurement Officer

My first Op-Ed, Open Letter to the C-Suite, appealed to the C-Suite to hold Procurement accountable for not investing in technology.  The blog referenced a Gartner perspective that only 22% of procurement leaders have a long-term digital strategy.  I touched a nerve, invoking comments from a few readers suggesting there are procurement leaders - the Magical CPO - that understand how to navigate the C-Suite to get the budget for technology investments.

To give credit where credit is due, Nikesh Parekh, CEO of Suplari (Now Microsoft), is the source for the term Magical CPO.  It describes a procurement leader that understands how to build business cases and secure budgets for technology investments that improve their department's efficiency and effectiveness while supporting the needs across all business disciplines. The Magical CPO persona, by definition, is juxtaposed with the technology laggard. If you saw my first Op-Ed, I noted that 78% of procurement leaders are technology laggards without any digital automation strategy.

The Magical CPO persona

Let’s unpack the Magical CPO persona to agree on common qualities. My views are based on my observations and experiences over a 30+ year career in procurement. There is no Wikipedia page for Magical CPO nor a Google search that prompts any relevant hits - I checked.  While I understand there are more sources than Wikipedia and Google, the point is that there is generally no standard persona for the Magical CPO. Here’s my interpretation of what the Magical CPO must possess: 

Greg Tennyson, SVP of Strategy & Procurement, Fairmarkit

This Month at SIG – June 2022

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

The second half of 2022 is here but constant supply chain problems are diverting procurement’s attention from other business-critical areas. We have a host of resources, insights and events to get you prepared!


June CPO & Executive Virtual Series

SIG's CPO & Executive Virtual Series is an opportunity for the most senior procurement executives to gather with their peers in an interactive virtual environment to discuss their most pressing issues. On June 8, Keith Learn, Vice President of Procurement & Supplier Development at Mary Kay Inc., will deliver a thought leadership presentation that will leave you with many new tools and strategies! Nick Heinzmann, Vice President of Research at Spend Matters will also be presenting his latest learnings. Nick will discuss ESG, regulatory forces, and inflation.

Join us for this collaborative and very personal conversation!

 
 

Power Hour Webinars

ESG Regulation and its Impact on Sourcing

Join John Bree, Chief Evangelist & Chief Risk Officer from Supply Wisdom on June 9th to explore the impact of ESG on supply chains and operations.

Desmond Williams, Digital Marketing Manager

Dealing With Inflation And The Disrupted Supply Chain

Disrupted Supply Chain

There are no shortages of headlines such as the one above linking supply chain disruption to inflation. While I don't want to oversimplify the current situation, when supply can't meet demand for various reasons, inflation is the end result. External forces such as the above reference to the war in Ukraine and the now seemingly endless COVID-19 pandemic are the most notable contributing factors. And let’s not forget the Suez Canal blockage and its extended impact around the globe.

Undoubtedly, the “interconnectedness of global supply chains” means that these events have far-reaching implications impacting “labor, energy and transport costs.” As a result, the consumer price index (CPI) - which has been somewhat stable for the past few decades, has seen a significant rise in prices.

How significant?

In December 2021, reports indicate that the CPI was “5.4% higher than a year previously in December 2020.” In other words, even though supply chain disruption and its link to inflation are not new, the breadth of its impact globally has created a sense of urgency like never before – at least not in the 21st century. Nor are there any signs of relief on the near horizon, as a recent New York Times article proclaims that we are not likely to see the return to a “normal supply chain” in 2022 (or anytime soon.)

Along with senior buy-side executives, joining SIG’s Stephani McGarry on the call was the Everest Group. In what I can only refer to as a “captivating session,” the discussion focused on what we as an industry have and will continue to face during these inflationary times.   

Dawn Tiura, President and CEO, SIG

Using A GPO Model To Fight Inflation? Insights From Our Second Interview With A Senior Procurement Executive

How to Use A GPO Model To Fight Inflation

In the last article, we heard from Senior Vice President & Global Chief Procurement Officer at Cigna Express Scripts, Tony Abate, regarding his steps for dealing with inflation.

In this article, we hear takeaways from a recent CPO Roundtable discussion from Michael Koontz, VP, Strategic Sourcing & Business Leader for American Tire Distributors (ATD) Sourcing Solutions. I think you will find his approach to battling inflation innovative and unique.

Before we get to Michael’s fight-inflation strategy, let’s first provide some background information on his company. ATD operates more than 130 distribution centers, including 24 in Canada, serving close to 80,000 customers across North America. Employing 4,000 associates in the U.S. and 600 north of the 49th, ATD offers an “unsurpassed breadth and depth of inventory, frequent delivery and value-added services to tire and automotive service customers.”

Their selection as one of Forbes’ 2021 America's Best Mid-Sized Employers and the reception of a Gold Stevie® Award in the Transportation Company of the Year category of the American Business Awards® provides testimony to their high level of service and success as a company.

An Innovative Model

According to Michael, inflation is “five times more difficult for small businesses.

Dawn Tiura, President and CEO, SIG

Pages