Archive for January, 2016

Can You See Your Desk?

Friday, January 15th, 2016

 

Today?s blog is by Margaret Stewart, Executive Assistant at SafeSourcing.

Whether it is business or personal, it is important to keep essential files. As the tax season approaches, we are reminded that we must keep tax returns for several years. Just like taxes, there are other important documents each of us must keep, such as many financial statements, contracts, warranty paperwork, or even photographs. The problem is that many of us keep adding to the list of documents to keep, while the amount of items we can shred or recycle doesn?t go down as much. So, what options are available?

Traditionally, everything has been in paper form. Stacks of paperwork can be hard to sift through and even harder to organize. If a document is needed, it can take a grueling amount of time to obtain. Even if we can efficiently organize all the paperwork we need, it still takes up larger and larger amounts of space, likely creeping in to our work areas. Not only does all the extra paperwork hinder our efficiency and is aesthetically unwanted, but it can also be a fire hazard.

Luckily today, we are able to store most items electronically. Storing these on your own computer, however, can really slow down your computer. SafeSourcing can help your business or organization with this problem. The cloud-based storage programs, SafeDocument? and SafeContract?, allow you to free up space on your device and securely store your important papers and contracts electronically. With these programs, you can access your items anytime anywhere and is exceptionally easy to use and easy to find what you need.

For more information on SafeSourcing?s cloud-based storage, or on our Risk Free trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative. We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

 

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What can a security system do for me?

Thursday, January 14th, 2016

 

 

Today?s post is by Troy Lowe; Vice President of Development at SafeSourcing.

Home security options have come a long way over the past few years. It used to be that your security system would be setup with sensors located on doors and windows and would alert you of a possible intruder.? They would be connected to a land line that would notify your provider and they would notify the police.? One problem with this scenario is that the land lines can be disconnected or cut from outside the home and the notification would not be sent.? Newer systems now come with cellular connections so this is no longer an issue.? Houses no longer have to be pre wired because of the cost effective wireless options that are now available.? With some of the providers today you can not only be protected from intruders, but also from fire and carbon monoxide.? The systems also come with cameras so that you can monitor your home remotely, giving you peace of mind when you are not home.? Below are some other benefits of owning a home security system.

  • Deters Crime
  • Access and Control lighting and Thermostats
  • Monitor Kids Activities
  • Instills Peace of Mind
  • Increases the Value of Your Home
  • Discounts on Home Owners Insurance

If you would like some help finding the right solutions, we can gather all the necessary information for you and help you decide which system meets your needs. If you would like more information on how SafeSourcing can help you, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative.? We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

We look forward to your comments.

 

 

 

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Where is that Contract?!?

Monday, January 11th, 2016

 

Today?s post is written by Heather Powell, Director of the Customer Focus Team & Project Manager at SafeSourcing Inc.

Recently, I was working with a client on creating a Request for Information for a project and was requested to include a particular supplier. When I inquired why they were to be included, the answer was because we have always done business with them. Ok.? When I asked for the latest copy of their contract, I was met with silence and then an unsure answer of IF there was a contract and WHERE the contact is.

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Within a few days I was sent a correspondence with an attachment.? The e-mail apologized for the delay in responding to my request and that the contract took days to find as it was in the computer of a past employee. Once it was found, the contract had expired in 2002!

All because they have ?always done business with them? mentality:

  • ??The contract became outdated.
  • ??It was stored in one computer that no one had access – the employee no longer worked for the company and IT had to retrieve it from the hard drive.
  • ??The supplier was charging them prices that had doubled and tripled over time.

Ask yourself and ask those you hold responsible:

  • ??Where are my contracts?
  • ??Are they current?
  • ??How do I know when the contract is set to expire?
  • ??Who has access to them?
  • ??Are they electronic copies or paper copies?
  • ??How do I avoid all of the issues above?

SafeSourcing has the solution for you!

SafeContract? is a tool that companies can use to automate and improve their contract flow by electronically capturing their company?s contracts and contract details.

By implementing SafeContract?, companies can improve their contract cycles, standardize processes, reduce administrative costs, improve contract compliance, and increase the effectiveness of negotiations.

SafeContract? provides financial, role, and organization security, as well as supporting regulatory compliance. It makes contract creation, contract activation, and contract compliance safe and easy to access and use.

SafeSourcing can assist you in exploring your contract management procedures for your business or on our ?Risk Free? trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative.? We have an entire customer services team waiting to assist you today.

We look forward to your comments.

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Everything is about the Internet Of Things, even Garage Door Openers and Security!

Friday, January 8th, 2016

 

Today?s post is by Troy Lowe; Vice President of Development at SafeSourcing.

If you currently need a new garage door opener or are looking to improve the opener that you have, you may want to take a look at making your opener Wi-Fi enabled. There a few different ways to accomplish this.? If you need to replace your current opener, most of the major brands now have Wi-Fi capabilities built in and our ready to use out of the box.? If you have a newer garage door opener, it may be Wi-Fi compatible but you need to purchase additional equipment to get it up and running.? There are also devices available that will allow you to make your current opener Wi-Fi enabled if it currently has safety photo eyes installed.? The photo eyes are usually located on the bottom of the tracks about 3 or 4 inches from the ground.? They are safety devices used to stop a door from closing if something is in the way.? Once you have your opener Wi-Fi enabled, you can download applications from your smartphone or other devices and monitor and control the garage door opener.? You can also setup schedules so that the door will check and automatically close at desired times.? This will ensure that you do not accidentally leave the door open overnight.? Below are some other features that are available for the opener.

  • Monitor status of the door
  • Receive alerts when you forget to close the door
  • Open or Close the door from anywhere with your smartphone
  • Receive alerts about door activity

If you would like some help finding a Wi-Fi solution, we can gather all the necessary information for you and help you decide which product meets your needs. If you would like more information on how SafeSourcing can help you, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative. We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

We look forward to your comments.

 

 

 

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Keeping your feet on the path of your procurement journey

Tuesday, January 5th, 2016

 

Today?s post is?from our?SafeSourcing archives

As the final film installment of The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, is released, an interesting quote from the previous movie series, The Lord of the Rings, comes to mind.? ?It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.?? The question becomes, how do you keep your feet?? How do you avoid getting swept off??? In today?s blog we are going to look at a few of the ways companies ?lose their feet.?

Don?t focus on the path behind ? Taking a journey, like life, is all about moving forward.? The path may not always be straight and clear but the process is about moving forward and this is almost impossible to do when you are focused on where you just came from.? Focusing on the mistakes or the past successes for too long will get you off track to where you are going next.?? In every day terms this translates into running the next project as successfully as possible without bringing too much of the past into the picture.? Be careful not to assume that a successful strategy on the last project will work on this one, or that a strategy that didn?t work as else well on a project 3 months ago won?t work better for the one you have coming up next month.? As with any journey, there will be plenty of time to stop and reflect on your progress and the things learned, and there should be for projects as well.? Semi-annual reviews and project post-mortem review sessions are helpful activities; they just shouldn?t be th
e focus as the next project begins.

Don?t look down, look ahead?. ? When I walk I tend to look down a lot near my feet.? This had led me to find some really cool things (like money) that other people miss, but more often than not, it prevents me from seeing things up ahead of me that would allow me to deal with them before they occur.? Approaching the sourcing process is very similar.? If you focus only on what is going on now you will make decisions based on facts that can and will change and lock those decisions into contracts you must be accountable for.? Looking ahead may uncover an upcoming environmental change that would speak to a shorter deal with a supplier now, with the intention of renegotiating in 9 months when that change comes and puts the company in a better position to negotiate.?? Keeping a view of what?s ahead can save you from making costly mistakes that will last the life of an agreement.

?but not too far ahead ? What can sometimes happen when you start looking ahead, however, is that it goes too far.? When companies spend so much time worrying about what?s down the road, they can ignore the current climate of their organization.? In these cases they frequently find that they never even get to that spot up ahead they are worrying about because the current situation demanded them to leave the current path and go someplace else.? Sometimes this ?someplace else? is out of business.? Balancing the view of what?s coming without losing touch with what is going on today is critical and the companies that do it well can achieve great results that bring extra value to their organization.

For more information on how SafeSourcing can help you with your projects and these sourcing strategy discussions, or on our ?Risk Free? trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative.? We have an entire customer services team waiting to assist you today.

We look forward to your comments.

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Why do our resolutions fail?

Monday, January 4th, 2016

 

As the New Year approaches and we universally celebrate the turning of the page on another year in our lives we tend to use the occasion to set resolutions for ourselves surrounding changes we want to make in our lives.? These changes are not isolated from the workplace, in fact millions of 2016 resolutions will directly apply to peoples? jobs/careers.? Many procurement professionals will look at their decisions and direction and begin to plan changes in those processes as well.?? Unfortunately for as many people who will try to make changes, many will fail to reach their goals and in today?s blog we will look at a few reasons why that happens.

People don?t know how to get there ? There are many places in this world I want to go, some of the them are not that far from my home, and yet without preparing directions, or in today?s world, loading a GPS device, I would have no idea how to get there.? I may be able to head in a general direction but in time I would get lost and frustrated and head right back home.? New changes to your procurement processes are no different.? They require a plan of action, directions on where you going, in order to get to where you want to be.? This, of course, assumes a knowing of where you want to be and how to measure whether you actually got there which is all part of the plan.

People forget to take the baby steps ? So many resolutions fail because people set goals of losing 50 pounds by June, or quitting smoking or managing stress better with the perception that getting there is just a matter or ?wanting it bad enough? or having enough willpower.? Willpower like anything that is exercised takes time to ?get in shape? you wouldn?t get off the couch and run a marathon the first day and neither should expect lofty goals and resolutions to be achieved on the first day.? Starting with short term achievable goals that can provide momentum is the key.? Instead of focusing on a lofty ?reduction of costs by 20% this year?, focus on how you can reduce the time from project start to realized savings by 3 days or on including one extra supplier in the process to help you make better choices leading to higher value for the company.

People don?t really want to change ? Some resolutions fail because we subconsciously want them to fail.? The truth is many of us like to eat food that is bad for us and indulge in habits that are bad for us.? Many others are afraid of bettering ourselves in our career because it may someday mean stepping out of our comfort zone into a world with different responsibilities and expectations.? This can be especially difficult for people with more introverted personalities.? One of your goals may be to increase new projects with new departments within the organization by 15%.? In many cases this is going to require selling your department?s service and expertise to those departments and this can be a scary place for some professionals who are fine ?taking orders?.? To be successful in types of goals start by knowing where your strengths and weaknesses of your team are and whether you will be able to do the things necessary to achieve the goals/resolutions you are creating.

For more information on how SafeSourcing can help you with your projects, or on our ?Risk Free? trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative.? We have an entire customer services team waiting to assist you today.

We look forward to your comments.

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