Has the Time Run Out on Your eSourcing Process?

Does it feel like you have run out of time to run even simple eSourcing events?

Procurement professionals tell me that time is the one thing they need more of.

Most tell me that they feel overwhelmed by the pressure and have an uneasy feeling in their stomachs almost every day.

This reminds me of my days in public accounting. The deadlines kept coming and no matter how many hours I worked, it seemed like I couldn’t get ahead.

It got so bad that I had to find a better way.

I was fortunate to discover a way to manage the chaos and I use it in my consulting with procurement pros because it works.

The approach I use and teach is like creating a cookbook.

I love the “Barefoot Contessa” cookbooks written by Ina Garten.

Most of the recipes are foolproof and they rarely require exotic ingredients.

What I find most interesting and enlightening is that even when Ina Garten finds a recipe that everyone loves she never stops working on it. She thinks “how can I make it better?” or “how can I make another variation that people will love even more?”

Very successful people never settle. They continually work to improve.

Let me share how I use this to help my clients become more efficient and effective.

The first step is to identify how much time it takes to execute an event.

Seems simple enough.

Most people find that once they start tracking they realize that the time actually working on critical aspects of the event is much smaller then they believe.

We often get caught completing steps that aren’t needed in every event or spending time on peripheral items that have negligible impact on the outcome.

The goal of the exercise is to determine steps required for repeatable success. A great recipe only has the ingredients and process steps that are required.

If you can set up your sourcing process the same way, you will “suddenly” find the time to get ahead.

The main idea is to thoroughly evaluate each part of the process and eliminate steps that are nice but not necessary. Being brutally honest about the time you are spending is critical to this analysis.

I recently reviewed the RFP request process for a prospective client. The staff was frustrated by the amount of time and effort it was taking to obtain the specifications from stakeholders.

Once we reviewed the process they had in place it became apparent that they were making the task for the stakeholders far too complicated. Most of the requests were straightforward. The real issue was that they were asking for the same amount of information for simple requests as they were for complex ones.

Information from past events was retained but not accessible by stakeholders so they had to submit the same information each time even if nothing had changed.

It was apparent that setting up a process that was repeatable and fit the complexity of diverse types of events would save an enormous amount of time and eliminate many frustrations.

Most eSourcing platforms are nimble enough to automate your RFP process to fit different size events.

You may be thinking that you love the idea of being more efficient but how are you going to get the budget for a process that “only” saves time?

Can I offer a suggestion?

It should be easy to identify opportunities to save money if you had the time to plan and execute events.

Every organization has categories with opportunities to reduce costs.

The savings of time and cost will support your request to make your eSourcing process efficient and effective.

Ask better questions, make changes and 2018 will be your best year ever.

Action Step: If you are uncertain where to start the process of change, a procurement professional like myself can provide guidance and expertise to help your organization achieve the results you want.

If you want to go explore this topic in greater detail, please contact me. I invite you to request 30-minute discovery conversation. In my experience the next step will be apparent at the end of the call. I never assume that what I have to offer will be right for everyone, so don’t expect a sales pitch. You can reach me at 973-936-9672.

If you would like to know more ways to reduce costs without changing the way you do business, simply give me a call or send me an email with your contact information and the best time to reach you.

You Won’t Drift to Success©

Commit to taking the next step.

Until Next Time, I Wish You Great Success in Your Business and in Your Life

Mike Jeffries