Today’s post is by Ron Southard CEO at SafeSourcing Inc.
Many projects fail when companies implement them. Probably a much higher percentage than you might believe. Just take a look at the new Obama care website.
It’s no different when implementing new procurement technologies. You can install it behind your firewall. You can use SaaS based tools. You can pick any toolset in the Procure to Pay process from eRFX tools to Contract Management. If you are going to be successful with the launch of your new e-procurement tools, you have to be committed to the process. This really is about nothing more than how prepared you are as a procurement knowledge worker regarding procurement in general and your category, product or service specifically. If you are committed, then you should be prepared. There really is no excuse to not be.
In order to be successful at e-procurement or the online or SaaS based e-RFX process, a procurement knowledge worker has to be committed to the process. First of all this means they have to understand the process. Beyond training in tool utilization, this suggests a willingness to share information relative their buying patterns as well as what their expectations are for selecting a new supplier to work with. All of this must be shared with their new solution provider. Category managers, buyers and other knowledge workers that interface with the supply chain should be communicating regularly with their incumbent suppliers regarding current market conditions, quality, delivery and other potential pitfalls as part of their job. If issues do exist they need to be discussed and documented so they can be reviewed with your new e-procurement solutions provider and included in the e-RFX setup and strategy.
To be committed to the procurement process, procurement knowledge workers must be prepared to answer questions from suppliers even if the answers are to be issued through your solutions provider. If you act as though you are not committed to this new process, your incumbent supplier as well as potential new sources of supply will pick up on that immediately.
The bad news for your company is that if a buyer or category manager acts as though they do not support this new process, holds side bar conversations that mitigate its use or raises other red flags in the supplier community, you will not get the best pricing, you will not get the best quality and you will not have the best supplier relationships into the future.
If you tools are not working for you, contact a SafeSourcing customer services account manager for assistance.
We look forward to and appreciate your comments.