Archive for the ‘Sourcing Strategy’ Category

eRFX Strategies for Success a Refresher!

Friday, March 3rd, 2023


Todays post is from Ron Southard, CEO at SafeSourcing Inc. This post also includes input from the many talented teammates I work with every day and my Whitepaper by the same title.

Every sourcing project is different, from the data you start with to the results you hope to achieve and how to get there in a way that delivers great results and great participation. Knowing where to start and the path to travel is key to achieving both of these goals.

The world of procurement is continually changing, and this includes the world of eProcurement when it comes to the request for information, a proposal, or a quote.  The differences between the three requests, what expectations are when receiving the requests back, and how to make a sound business decision with what has been submitted are what separate each stage in giving procurement professionals the blueprint as to where to begin in the process.

While technology continues to evolve and have significant impact on the procurement space, is it bringing better results than the tried and true processes that have evolved but are seldom followed in their entirety. These processes have been in place for years. What are they, how to do them correctly and maximize your results, that is the real trick? If you cannot do them on your own, it may make sense to look to companies that can deliver them consistently in the form of white glove software as a service.

Tune back in tomorrow when we will explore the Request for Information or RFI?

If you’d like to learn more and can’t wait for the series conclusion, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Services associate, they’d be thrilled to hear from you.



It’s NOT being braggadocios if you REALLY are better than your peers.

Tuesday, February 28th, 2023


Today’s post is by Ronald D. Southard, CEO at SafeSourcing Inc

We are not bragging or being mean spirited; we are that good. Ask our customers. According to them we are invaluable to their company. So why not to yours. Take me to task and I’ll prove it. You nor anyone else on your team sources many of your products and services as often as we do. If you source a category once every one to three years, you are not a category expert because too many changes happen that you can’t keep up with. We can help you!

At SafeSourcing, we help procurement teams save considerably on costs by providing tools and services that enhance the ability to do business in a better, safer, smarter, more streamlined, and cost-effective way.   Our Customer Services team is one of the best in the industry at complimenting existing procurement teams to help structure and develop projects in less time for better results.

Our white-glove service offerings coupled with our suite of e-procurement tools deliver referenceable savings results that are greater than 10 times the cost of our services, improving Gross Margin and Earnings significantly.

So, give us a call.  And ask us about our e-Procurement solutions and associated white glove services and our SafeSourceIt™ Global Supplier Database  that includes over 557,000 vendor/suppliers. We can get you better pricing on about any category of product or service.

To learn more, please contact a SafeSourcing customer services associate.

Twelve areas to consider in your spend analysis if you don’t want to lose your hard earned savings.

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2023


Todays post is a favorite by Ron Southard our CEO from our SafeSourcing Archives

Our answer was that is actually a great questions and a tough one to answer if in fact it has not been planned for during the strategy process. We all know that there are all sorts of saving figures quoted in the e-procurement industry for just about any product or service available.

Here are 12 areas of focus to consider when trying to figure out not only your ROI on these projects, but more importantly how much of the savings made their way to the bottom line and what is your leakage percentage.

1. How clean was your GL data?
2. How clean were your specifications?
3. How long did it take you to award the business?
4. How long did it take you to test samples?
5. How long did it take you to sign a contract?
6. How long did it take you to accept your first delivery?
7. Was the first invoice for the exact price you contracted for?
8. Was the shipping and handling exactly as bid?
9. Were there any SOW change requests that raised pricing?
10. What P&L period are you reporting against?
11. What was the budget for this product or service?
12. Can you trace the spend to a specific P&L line item?

It would not be too hard to add another dozen items to this list. The answer here is that proper planning helps eliminate savings leakage. Don’t plan and it will hurt or erode some or all of your potential savings.

If you’d like to learn more, please contact us any time!

Misconception: eProcurement cost reduction only works for commodities  

Thursday, February 16th, 2023


Today’s post is by Dave Wenig Senior Vice President of Sales and Services at SafeSourcing Inc

It’s too easy to be dismissive of a concept, especially when you have preconceived notions.

For years, conversations with prospective users and even some customers have often headed down a familiar path. At SafeSourcing, we’re talking about reducing spend and ending overpayment across all categories by an average of 24%. Then we learn that the contact is only hearing this in terms of some pre-defined set of categories. Usually that’s supply items or some other items the person deems are commodities.

What if I told you that the most impact in terms of raw dollars saved come from other categories? What if I were to say that the highest percentages of cost reduction often come from using eProcurement to source services and even custom items?

Some people would still not believe me or would still fall back on their misconceptions, even if I shared recent results like these.

  • Armored Car Services: 21.61%
  • Windows and Doors: 13.84%
  • Floor, Wall, Ceiling Tiles: 40.37% (incl. installation)
  • Cooler Glides and Shelves: 33.41%
  • Exhaust Hoods: 21.33%
  • Waste Removal: 24.04%
  • Employee Assistance Program: 55.19%
  • Common Area Maintenance (CAM): 15.97%
  • Promotional Signage: 33.34%

Here is a quick test:

  • When you think of eProcurement, what spend categories come to mind first?
  • Have you competitively sourced any of the categories in the list in the past 3 years?
    • If no, why not?

For more information, please contact SafeSourcing.




Fail Quickly!

Wednesday, February 15th, 2023


Today’s post is from our SafeSourcing Archives.

Those of us who are too afraid to fail, inherently play things safe. Those of us who play it safe, don’t set “unachievable” goals.  Those of us who don’t set “unachievable” goals, don’t rethink our mental models of what is possible for achieving success.

Of course, no one will say failure doesn’t hurt. However, it doesn’t have to be crippling, if we approach it correctly. In weightlifting we have to allow the uncomfortable microscopic tears in our muscle fibers to occur before those cells can rebuild bigger and stronger. In our personal lives, it we have to be challenged and tested, and shown where our blind spots are before our character can be improved. In business, sometimes we need to surpass our own expectations of what is possible, and test that with both success and failure, before we will know what we or our organization is truly capable of.

Nathan, my second youngest brother, is more of a risk taker than I am, and I suspect there’s a lot I could learn from him. He’s traveled extensively, goes sky diving, purposely seeks out random strangers in public to sit and have lunch with, and generally is always trying new things that I’d rather not.  But he has a method about it; If the only reason he doesn’t want to take a risk is apathy, he takes it anyway. However, if the risk is so great that failure would be unrecoverable, he doesn’t go through with it. He has a lower and upper threshold for the risks he takes, so that he’s never too inactive, but also never betting more that he can afford to lose.

The point of failing quickly is not to take on gargantuan risks. In other words, we don’t go out and bet the farm just to prove a point. There are foolish ways of taking on excessive risk of course.

The point of failing quickly is to expand our self-imposed limitations of what is possible within the proving grounds of activity that we can quickly recover from should the experiment be a failure.

Please contact SafeSourcing if you’d like to discuss how this strategy can help your sourcing projects.

We look forward to and appreciate your comments.

So, what’s on your procurement roadmap this year?

Thursday, February 9th, 2023


Today’s post is by Ronald D. Southard, CEO at SafeSourcing Inc

I was just reading a post from my friend Jason Busch at Spend Matters on LinkedIn. He was discussing investment in our space #procurement which always seems to draw interest from the investment community both Private Equity and Venture Capital.

A quote from Jason caught my attention, as it is what we do and what we have done at SafeSourcing for years. “Reframe (or extend) your value proposition to cost take out and cost reduction. Historically these solutions did fine in past recessions. Hard dollar savings never go out of style.  Even some carbon solutions can be reframed this way”! Jason also went on to say to “Consider services and solutions “surrounds” to improve the numbers if you’re not already nailing your plan”.

Isn’t it funny that the bottom-line basics of procurement are what they always have been, provide services (ours are white glove) and solutions that reduce costs, improve profits and earnings amongst other related deliverables.

SafeSourcing is a Procure to Pay SaaS based provider of a number of e-Procurement solutions and associated white glove services that are part of our SaaS offered SafeSourceIt™ eSourcing suite. These include but are not limited to SafeContract™, SafePO™, SafeDocument™ and our SafeSourceIt™ Global Supplier Database that includes over 557,000 vendor/suppliers.

For more information, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Services Associate.

With WFH, Do these measure still Motivate Employees?

Tuesday, February 7th, 2023


Today’s re-post is by Gayl Southard, VP of Administration at SafeSourcing.

Traditional methods of motivating employees is all very familiar within organizations: good compensation and bonuses for targets achieved, praising teams’ performances, encouraging joint decision  making, and leading by example are all second nature to many business people.  As time and business evolve so must the ways we try to get the best from employees.  Listed below are five ways to motivate employees.

    1. Help Employees Understand the “Why”. When a new employee is added to your organization, make sure they are aware their role is vital. Explain exactly why they are doing their job and what they are out to achieve in making clients and customers’ lives easier. Give employees a purpose. A self-motivated employee is more personally accountable for their objective.
    2. Acknowledge all Progress Made. It is imperative for employees to feel like they are accomplishing something and their work makes a difference. Make sure to acknowledge progress is being made rather than a target not being hit. It is demotivating if a specific target has not been hit and giving up at that point is detrimental to future success. If employees receive recognition for whatever they do in the right direction, it will inspire them to work harder to exceed their objectives.
    3. Provide Career Development.Encourage employees to develop their skills, as well as the role within the organization. Opening job vacancies to existing staff will increase motivation and entice them to invest more in the organization.
    4. Encourage Work-Life Balance. Modern workplace puts emphasis on the importance of a balanced work-life. A happy employee is a motivated employee – develop fun and leisure activities in your organizations, such as celebrating birthdays, graduations, first-home purchases, as well as other significant milestones.
    5. Know Employees as Individuals. It is wise for Directors and team leaders to invest time in developing a good rapport with their employees. Every individual – even when doing the same job has a unique skill set and work style. Having an open-door policy so people feel you are accessible and open to their views makes them feel appreciated.

Safesourcing is motivated to help you achieve your business goals! For more information on how we can help you with your procurement needs 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.


Executive Insight, Omar Hosari, 12/15/15


Can We Collaborate?

Thursday, February 2nd, 2023


Today’s blog is by Margaret Stewart, Director of HR, and Administration at SafeSourcing Inc.

You have probably heard that phrase so many times, you might not even recall the first time you heard it. The reason it is such a popular phrase is because it has remained true and helpful throughout. Even during early school years, we are taught how to work with others to accomplish some task – because it is such an important skill and helps to accomplish goals throughout life.

In our current climate, it is still important to be able to work together. We work within our organizations and use the skills of those strongest in certain fields to help the group as a whole. In fact, we do this so much that we choose people based on their strengths and their ability to fulfil the organization’s needs – making a hundred heads better than one.

Sometimes the need extends further than within an organization. This is where collaborating with another organization can help! In fact, this is something SafeSourcing does quite often. Let us say you need to source, as an example, plastic bags. Perhaps you do not buy enough to get much of a discount. Here we can collaborate. With a SafeSourcing collaboration, your plastic bag quantities and other organizations’ quantities combined can expand the resources available to you and could get you a more competitive price.

If you are not sure if collaboration is right for you, you can still collaborate with SafeSourcing to help you get the services or supplies you need from the vendors that can help you the best. SafeSourcing has the expertise that can help strengthen whatever project you are set to undergo.

For more information on what the SafeSourcing team can offer you, or on our Risk-Free trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative. We have an entire team ready to assist you today.




Have you invested in EGGCoins yet? 

Friday, January 27th, 2023


Today’s post is by Ronald D. Southard, CEO at SafeSourcing Inc

EGGcoins or just plain old farm fresh eggs are outperforming Bitcoin and most other crypto assets.

However, you cannot hold them for quite as long because they spoil quickly, or even worse they hatch and turn into ChickenCoins that require physical housing versus a virtual wallet.

While bitcoin is up 38.92% YTD. Eggs are up over 60% in the last 12 months and headed higher yet. Maybe you can exchange EGGcoin with Bitcoin.  At least if the price drops sharply, you’d have something to eat. Or even have a pet (not suggested as my grandfather was a chicken farmer so I know things).

While I know you all like tongue in cheek posts, please remember that like everything, egg prices vary drastically based on type, size, color, and farming styles like free range versus caged.

If you really want to get your best price for this commodity, Contact SafeSourcing Inc. We buy more of all commodities more often than you do and know the levers to pull. Glad to share some recent examples when you reach out.

SafeSourcing is a Procure to Pay SaaS based provider of a number of e-Procurement solutions and associated white glove services that are part of our SaaS offered SafeSourceIt™ eSourcing suite. These include but are not limited to SafeContract™, SafePO™, SafeDocument™ and our SafeSourceIt™ Global Supplier Database that includes over 557,000 vendor/suppliers.

For more information, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Services Associate.



Logistics Service Provider

Friday, January 20th, 2023



Today’s post is by Ronald D. Southard, CEO at SafeSourcing Inc.

Logistics outsourcing involves a relationship between a company and an LSP (Logistic Service Provider) which, compared with basic logistics services, has more customized offerings, encompasses a broad number of service activities, is characterized by a long-term orientation, and, thus, has a rather strategic nature.

An LSP is really what most people would see as a traditional 3PL provider offering a combination of warehousing and transportation services or one or the other. As global and multi-national providers enter the game, things have certainly changed, but the Logistics Service Provider at its core is fundamentally the same.

Third-Party Logistics Provider (3PL) involves using external organizations to execute logistics activities that have traditionally been performed within an organization itself. According to this definition, third-party logistics includes any form of outsourcing of logistics activities previously performed in-house. If, for example, a company with its own warehousing facilities decides to employ external transportation, this would be an example of third-party logistics. Logistics is an emerging business area in many countries.

If you’d like to learn more about how SafeSourcing can assist in managing your selection of a variety of logistics issues, please contact a SafeSourcing customer services associate.