The Point by Buyers Meeting Point

One of the interesting things about consistently reading and hearing content from quality sources is that you start to notice trends. It is amazing how often the same topics arise at the same time in different places. We use this blog as a way to help you stay on top of the major themes in procurement and supply chain management.

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Kelly Barner

Kelly Barner

Kelly has a unique perspective on procurement from her experience on both sides of the negotiation desk. She has led projects involving members of procurement, supplier and purchasing teams. She has practical skills in strategic sourcing program design and management, opportunity assessment, knowledge management, and custom taxonomy design and implementation. She also has direct sourcing experience in a number of product and service categories including: inventory fuel, location-based services, corrugated, and corporate purchasing cards. Kelly has her MBA as well as an MS in Library and Information Science.

This week’s featured webinar was the monthly event run by the Next Level Purchasing Association on 20 Ways To Create The Perfect Negotiation First Impression. If you missed the event, you can read a related blog post by Association President and CPO Charles Dominick.

You can also learn more about negotiation (among other topics) at the first Next Level Purchasing Association Conference in Pittsburgh, PA September 12-13, 2013.

This week’s featured webinar on ‘Creating a T&E Policy that Works’ was sponsored by the Professional Association for the Commercial Card and Payment Industry (or NAPCP).

Travel spend is at great risk for non-compliance as business travelers make independent decisions about airlines, hotels and rental cars in pursuit of reward points or a better travel experience. In this week’s event, Marie Cohen from USI Insurance Services gave an overview on how to establish roles and responsibilities, manage exceptions and non-compliance, and maintain efficient cross-department accountability.


Thank you to everyone who has registered to be a part of our research project into supplier discovery and product sourcing! Given the topic, we can only meet our goals if we garner participation from procurement professionals like you.


Buyers Meeting Point is looking for help with an important research project on supplier discovery and product sourcing. Buyers Meeting Point is a co-sponsor of this research, and so I’m asking for your participation. You are also welcome to forward this information on to any colleagues or connections you think will be interested.

This week’s featured webinar was presented by Ardent Partners: ‘Game of Thrones: How a Strong CFO-CPO Alliance Can Command Top Performance’. I’ve only seen one episode of the HBO series Game of Thrones – I didn’t have the nerves or the stomach to watch another – but luckily for me there was no violence or bloodshed involved in this webinar.

This week’s featured event was hosted by Sourcing Interests Group and presented by IBM's Institute for Business Value or IBV. IBM just released the largest, most comprehensive Chief Procurement Officer Study ever conducted, with participation from 1,128 CPOs from organizations with annual revenue in excess of US$1 billion.

IBM's Institute for Business Value (IBV) just released the largest, most comprehensive Chief Procurement Officer Study ever conducted, with participation from 1,128 CPOs from organizations with annual revenue in excess of US$1 billion. According to the study, “Companies with high performing procurement organizations have profit margins 15 percent higher than the average company and 22 percent higher than those of companies with lower performing procurement organizations.”

This week’s featured webinar was hosted by ISM and presented by Chris Sawchuk, Principal and Global Procurement Advisory Practice Leader at The Hackett Group. In ‘Key Procurement Issues in 2013: Going Deeper and Broader for Borderless Procurement’ we heard the application of Hackett’s ‘Borderless Business’ concept to the world of procurement, focusing on the priorities being set by leading organizations for performance and capability building.

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As we celebrate the July 4th holiday with grilling, ice cream, and fireworks, we also pause to appreciate the freedom we enjoy and those who served to protect it.

Many of us have taken the Myers-Briggs personality test, either in school or on the job. One of the core principles is that there are no bad personality types. Taking the test is supposed to help you know yourself better, understanding your natural inclinations. That way, when you are under stress, not only will you be able to predict how you are likely to react to different situations, you may be able to alter your reaction to reach a desired result.

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This week’s featured webinar was presented by the Next Level Purchasing Association. Each of the three speakers gave a preview of the sessions they will presenting at NLPA’s first conference, which is being held in Pittsburgh, PA this September.

Rather than covering a webinar this week, I decided to focus on a recent interview conducted by Jon Hansen on the PI Window on Business Blog Talk Radio program. In April he spoke with Bill Michels, President of ADR North America, which was acquired by a for-profit arm of the Institute for Supply Management in December of 2011. The interview titled ‘The Future of ISM’ is available on demand on Blog Talk Radio.

The End of Competitive Advantage by Columbia Business School Professor Rita Gunther McGrath provides a perspective on the way businesses should develop and maintain their strategy to remain competitive. Gone are the days when companies could achieve a leadership position in a market and then continue to dominate for decades without significant changes. Innovative companies develop products across traditional sector lines, making the industry-based model of competition assessment obsolete. McGrath advises defining competitive strategies based on arenas, which she defines as smaller market segments defined by consumer behavior and geography as well as the product or service being sold.

This week’s featured event was presented by CombineNet and looked inside the operations of regional and national restaurant chains. The event is available on demand, as is an accompanying case study.

This week’s featured event was presented by Directworks on total cost visibility. Particularly in direct materials procurement, achieving total cost visibility requires data on components as well as the supply chain that moves them. This event is available on demand, and can be viewed here. There is also a whitepaper on this topic available for download.

In this Procurement on YouTube post, we will hear from Mikkel Larsen, Strategic Programme Executive at Rolls Royce. He recently gave a presentation at ProcureCon on ‘Focusing on the big wins and sustainable outcomes: using demand and specification management as the key tools in meeting tough savings targets’. When he talks about sustainability, he means lasting results through meaningful change versus environmental sustainability. In this clip, he describes the importance of reducing costs through demand and specifications as opposed to just consolidating volume for pricing leverage, bringing suppliers and internal stakeholders actively into the process to collaborate on a meaningful solution.


This week’s featured event was hosted by SciQuest and featured Spend Matters Lead Analyst Thomas Kase and a case study by German Torres of FMC Technologies, a $6B oil and gas company. You can view the event on demand here or register to download the accompanying white paper.

This week’s featured event was hosted by Sourcing Interests Group and presented by Denali Group’s John Evans and Grant Dearborn. Their ‘Five Steps To Creating A Successful Procurement Strategy’ logically started with their working definition of strategy, one that is specific to procurement:

“[Strategy] Defines a plan for optimizing external spend, procurement operations and other value contributions in a manner that supports the overall corporate agenda.”

The idea of being green is certainly not new to corporations or to purchasing professionals for that matter. That does not mean that the effort is easy, or that the path to sustainable purchasing is clear. ‘Green Purchasing & Sustainability’, written by purchasing professional, author, speaker, trainer and consultant Robert Menard, is a practical book that will help you get started down that road.

In this week’s featured event, Bryan Ball and Bob Heaney, Abredeen research analysts, recapped the major findings from the 2013 Supply Chain Management Summit in Chicago. The event is available on demand, as are event highlights and approved presentations.

This week’s featured webinar was hosted by ISM, sponsored by Hubwoo and presented by Spend Matters. ‘Doing More with Less in Procurement: a punch list of 25 items to improve your productivity’ was based on a snap poll taken to help participants benchmark themselves relative to their peers in this area. As you might expect, prioritization is key, and we will hear more in the ongoing discussion of tactical versus strategic efforts and how to keep the machine cranking efficiently.

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