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Transparency to Freight Costs through eSourcing

Posted by Teresa Yost on Jun 9, 2016 8:10:00 AM

We truly enjoy the partnerships we’ve built with our clients.  It’s through these relationships that we learn about the day to day challenges our users face.  Periodically their pain is our gain - meaning that sometimes we’re able to assist by developing additional functionality to further assist them in their procurement duties.

A friendly interview

Let me introduce you to Jeff Abramson.  Jeff oversees supply chain and purchasing for a chain of barbecue restaurants owned, operated and franchised throughout the U.S. states and Canada.  His company has been an Intesource partner since December 2013. 

Late last year Intesource received a request from Jeff asking Intesource to assist him and his team in automating their manual process for gathering freight charges offered by their suppliers.  Their current process was cumbersome and time consuming. 

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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology, e-Sourcing Strategy, Technology

Is the Strategic Sourcing Process Enhanced with Additional Tools?

Posted by Michelle Fombelle on May 5, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Procurement professionals deploy eSourcing solutions for a number of reason but the most popular reason is for the eAuction and RFx capabilities. They want more streamlined and efficient processes, standardized response formats where they are receiving apples to apples information, all to help facilitate faster analysis and improve record keeping. However, you may be forgetting the benefits of utilizing the other source-to-contract tools in conjunction with your RFx. I’m talking contract management and supplier management

Let’s start with contract management. When you think contract management you probably think finance, legal, and audit groups. And you’d be right. It does provide value to those groups but it should not be overlooked by procurement for a few reasons…

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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology

7 Things You Didn’t Know About Managed Sourcing

Posted by Kelly Deacon on Feb 8, 2016 8:00:00 AM

You’ve heard by now, and probably seen first-hand, the benefits that can be derived from a holistic, strategic approach to sourcing -- cost avoidance, time savings, process efficiencies, and increased productivity – which in turn can make a big, positive impact on company margins, profitability, working capital and cash flow.

But did you know the business value a company sees from its sourcing program can be multiplied when implemented with a managed services partner? While less common in the procurement world today, industry experts predict the managed services market will nearly double by 2019 reaching $193.34 billion.

A few things you might not know about a managed services approach to sourcing that can prove to be hugely helpful when navigating today’s market challenges:

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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology, e-Sourcing Strategy, About e-Sourcing

One Strategy to Leverage the Cogs in the eSourcing Machine

Posted by Alanna Pashley on Dec 10, 2015 10:07:07 AM

Oftentimes, when you hear the term eSourcing a reverse auction is the first thing that comes to mind. In fact, a reverse auction is only one piece of the eSourcing pie. eSourcing encompasses a range of tools – from a RFx to contract management to supplier relationship management - that help stakeholders not only get the best price, but also find the right supplier. Today's article will explore the happy marriage between the reverse auction and the RFx.

By nature, a reverse auction is focused on price. Although there are reverse auction strategies that can (and should) be used to challenge vendors to deliver the optimal product or service beyond price, by beginning the process with a Request for Information (RFI) and/or Request for Proposal (RFP) stakeholders are able to first focus on important elements beyond dollars and cents.

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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology, e-Sourcing Strategy, About e-Sourcing

Cheat Sheet: Outsourcing vs. Managed Services

Posted by Kelly Deacon on Dec 3, 2015 9:00:00 AM

Finding ways to do more with less is a constant struggle for CPOs. Volatile economic conditions, thin profit margins, and a highly competitive business environment can often lead to budgetary restrictions, challenging procurement leaders to creatively reduce operating costs while simultaneously increase product quality.

Technology and partnership can help CPOs strike this balance, but there are a lot of options out there, leaving procurement executives with big decisions to make. Do we outsource procurement activities? Sign on with a managed sourcing partner? Keep sourcing completely in-house, but rethink the technology we’re using?

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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology

8 Clues You’ve Found the Right Sourcing Partner

Posted by Brian Miller on Nov 5, 2015 8:00:00 AM

Investing in eSourcing can prove to be an invaluable decision for your procurement team. The technology and approach can empower organizations to be more transparent, foster innovation and drive meaningful improvements in process efficiencies. But not all solutions and approaches can deliver the specific results you’re after, and finding the right partner to help you get to where you want to be can be confusing and daunting. With countless vendors offering unique combinations of capabilities, features, expertise and experiences, how can you be sure you’ve found your perfect match?

  1. They have extensive experience in your industry.

Your ideal sourcing partner will know your industry inside and out. Every sector has nuances that shape its landscape and present a unique set of challenges. The right partner will be able to share valuable insights that lead to stronger savings results, help you overcome these specific obstacles, and set you up to achieve your strategic goals. 

  1. They have a track record of proven success.

Customer testimonials are a great resource for vetting potential eSourcing partners. If a provider has experience in your industry, they’ll likely have successful customers that can vouch for them. In addition to showcasing results and past successes, you’ll also be able to get a feel for which types of companies are in their sweet spot and determine whether you fit the same profile.

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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology, e-Sourcing Strategy

The Ugly Stepsisters of Reverse Auctions Aren’t so Ugly

Posted by Michelle Fombelle on Jun 2, 2014 8:00:00 AM

The reverse auction is the Cinderella of the e-sourcing ball. Think the publicly acclaimed and famous member of the strategic sourcing family, but there are so many other lesser known online sourcing tools to employ that aid with e-sourcing projects. And they are just dying for your love and affection, just like Cinderella’s stepsisters – Anastasia and Drizella. Let’s take a look at the whole strategic sourcing family and you can decide for yourself how they stack up.

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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology, About e-Sourcing

10 Reasons You Shouldn't Invest in Sourcing and Procurement Technology

Posted by Tracie Rohn on Mar 11, 2014 7:00:00 AM

Warning: Sarcasm Ahead

Technology investments can be costly and difficult to implement. Plus, we all know that change is the worst and we are already the best at everything (naturally) – so why bother? Here are a whole slew of reasons why you don’t need sourcing technology.

  1. You know how every single penny is being spent within your organization.
  2. You love spending hours sorting through proposals, especially when they’re inconsistent and incomplete.
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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology, About e-Sourcing

4 Tips For Sourcing And Procurement Professionals to Run More Effective RFIs

Posted by Michelle Fombelle on Feb 26, 2014 8:00:00 AM

A request for information (RFI) is a process primarily used to gather basic information from a group of potential suppliers often in conjunction with a request for quote (RFQ) or e-auction. However, an RFI can be executed on its own to simply collect information on the vendors in a specific category.

What makes a successful request for information? When running an RFI keep in mind that the quality of the questions you include is what drives the usefulness of the vendors’ responses.

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Topics: e-Sourcing Best Practices, Strategic Sourcing Technology

Procurement Technology Boosts Potential Tobacco Boon For Retailers

Posted by Jason Heffelfinger on Feb 11, 2014 8:55:13 AM

With the CVS Caremark, Inc. decision to stop selling tobacco products in their stores by October 2014, it is estimated that CVS will take an annual loss of $2 billion from tobacco shoppers -- $1.5 billion in tobacco sales and the rest from other products tobacco shoppers purchase while in the store (i.e., prescriptions, HBC products, snacks, etc.).  Until other stores that have pharmacy operations, including grocery retailers, decide to follow CVS Caremark’s lead to also remove these items from their shelves, it is probably a safe bet these retailers stand to gain customers. 

It remains to be seen if tobacco consumers are ready to move to grocery chains for their tobacco purchases.  They will need to be willing to stand in line behind a grocery basket full of breakfast items, produce and tonight’s dinner.  If they are, grocery chains will gain not only tobacco sales, but also potentially secondary sales, including prescriptions, HBC items and those tasty breakfast waffles.

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Topics: Strategic Sourcing Technology, Innovation Conference