In this fourth and final installment in this Keynote Series, we talk about the "judicious deployment" of emerging technology without losing sight of the human side of digital transformation.
To achieve this "balance," Mattress Firm's VP of Indirect Procurement, Quave Burton, discusses the importance of motivation through employee recognition while challenging her team to "stretch themselves" to learn new and better ways to achieve strategic objectives.
For Quave, the journey of transforming procurement at Mattress Firm started at ground zero.
When I say ground zero, there wasn't a procurement department when she started working with the company. As she explains it, she was immediately on a transformation journey, starting with getting the right people to do the right things.
Fortunately, and with the full support of senior leadership, the organization was ready and willing to make changes.
At this point, I think it is essential to stop and stress the benefits of having to build the foundation for procurement transformation, starting with people before introducing technology. As anyone who has been in our industry for some time will tell you, in the past traditional ERP-based procurement initiatives have generally failed to achieve the expected results. Many studies estimate that the failure rate is between 50% and 75% - some even put that number higher.
The three main reasons for this less than stellar performance are poor User Experience, data inaccuracy, and analytics.
Despite introducing more advanced and intuitive "by-the-drink" technology solutions, CPO's dissatisfaction with digital initiatives remains high.
As the need for change and innovation continues to grow, companies are rapidly shifting focus towards outsourcing as a solution to assisting in digital innovation.
For many US companies, understanding the total cost of IT talent services has always been challenging, and is even more concerning now as budgets and resources continue to tighten during the COVID-19 crisis. Here are my thoughts on what to consider as you source IT talent and how to drive the “true India costs” that so many US firms are looking to take advantage of now.
Impact of Uncertainty
Many companies experienced an unanticipated disruption due to the Covid-19 crisis. Project timelines had to be extended, delivery negatively impacted and enterprise control compromised. While there’s no doubt that the pandemic has had an impact in some shape or form on all businesses, we have not seen a significant disruption with our clients at SMC Squared, in part due to the business continuity plans that were already set in place.
Continuity plans are a basic deliverable from the time of initial setup with SMC Squared and are essential for every global office. All SMC Squared global employees are provided with secure laptops and remote connectivity as part of our continuity plan if the office is not accessible. This was tested for our clients prior to COVID, so when Prime Minister Modi announced the shutdown with short notice, all of our employees had their laptops with them, including those who may have traveled home to their native places over the weekend. Therefore, despite the continued uncertainty of the pandemic, the change has had a minimal impact on work capacity.
Steven Stephan, SVP of Global Services & Co-Founder of SMC Squared
SIG’s Global Executive Summit is where forward-thinking procurement leaders come to experience pioneering trends grounded in today’s new realities. It provides a dedicated space for you to network with industry thought leaders, learn from different perspectives, and keep pace with emerging developments in strategic planning and procurement technology, all of which are essential to inform the way we work.
Taking place October 13 to 15, this Summit isn’t just a three-day-long webinar, it’s a live event! Everyone who attends will come away with data-backed insights and actionable resources. Sourcing and procurement leaders are continuously being shaped by new developments in contract management, remote work, sustainability, stakeholder buy-in and third-party risk management.
The keynote addresses and breakout sessions will directly address these trending topics and more:
Contract Lifecycle Management
Many sourcing bottlenecks are the result of poor contract management practices. Digitizing and automating the process, from initiation to award and renewal, can expedite the process and enhance compliance.
In my conversations with practitioners and procurement leaders, this topic comes up frequently. You can expect sessions that focus on executing complex negotiations to the role that advanced technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning play in managing the lifecycle of contracts.
“Resilience is accepting your new reality, even if it's less good than the one you had before. You can fight it, you can do nothing but scream about what you've lost, or you can accept that and try to put together something that's good.” – Elizabeth Edwards
When I was a kid, we never said the word resilience, but we did use the word tough. Being tough is just what we need right now; toughness is our ability to spring back, even when the world around us crumbles (think COVID-19). Our resiliency grows every time we flex – just like a muscle in our body. Developing a resilient procurement team likely means you are “starting over” – or creating a fresh start in some areas of your procurement ecosystem. If you’re feeling stuck or unsure where to start, you aren’t alone. Below are five ways that Procurement can help improve business resiliency:
SIG University Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP) program student Kimberly Morelli works at Driven Brands. She shares how essential components such as soft skills and change management can be and how she is implementing newly polished tools and best practices to tackle organizational challenges.
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.
My enrollment in the CSP Program from SIG University has proven to be timely and I am excited at the opportunity to have lessons that can be readily applied to our procurement organization. I also was heartened to find emphasis by SIG on positive supplier relationships versus an adversarial stance as used to be popular. The procurement team I am on has been in a state of transformation over the past few years, shifting from transactional buying to category management with a specific focus on increasing our sourcing processes. I found the CSP program to have laid a strong framework that is applicable to my organization, both in procurement and business areas.
After a reorganization within his company, a SIG University graduate applies lessons learned in the Certified Supplier Management Professional (CSMP) program to facilitate a people- and culture-driven change management approach to bring his company into regulatory compliance.
The CSMP program exposes students to leading-edge training on contract administration, compliance, risk mitigation, performance, governance operating models, talent management support, transformation and more to help companies put effective governance programs in place.
The Certified Supplier Management Professional (CSMP) program from SIG University discussed the importance of GR&C and provides samples of governance models with roles and authorities, its relationships, and communication structures in relation to the procurement or sourcing strategies of an organization. I was glad to see these topics discussed as it confirmed the need for reorganization within my company, which now has clearly defined roles and responsibilities between governance and third party risk management and the sourcing department.
David E. Romo-Garza, Director of Business Risk and Controls