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November 2016 Volume 6, Issue 11

History Was Made at the 2016 NLPA Conference

Certification & Training Spotlight

Contributions of a Great Purchasing Manager

Webinar: Key Elements of Effective Negotiating

Nearshoring or Offshoring?

Media Guidelines For Purchasing Professionals

Rating A Buyers Negotiation Effectiveness

Supplier Identification Lessons Learned

Price and Commodity Indices


Direct vs. Indirect Spend


Before Launching Sourcing Initiatives


Comprehensive Supplier Risk Profiling


Contact Us:
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Fax : 1-412-294-1992
Mail your correspondence to Next Level Purchasing, P.O. Box 1360,
Moon Township, PA 15108, USA
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Before Launching Sourcing Initiatives 12

All rights reserved. 2016 Next Level Purchasing, Inc.

From The Purchasing Certification Blog

Procurement History Was Made

at the 2016 NLPA Conference!
by Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3
After two wildly popular procurement
conferences 2013s Make Procurement
Rock and 2014s Where Procurement MVPs
Are Made the procurement world wondered
what the Next Level Purchasing Association had
up its sleeve next for 2016.
The answer was yet another incredibly
educational, enjoyable and historic event: the
2016 NLPA Conference with the theme Make
Your Mark on Procurement History!
At the NLPA, we always challenge ourselves to
create conference experiences that are more
unique and awesome than anything that we
or any other procurement conference host
has ever provided before. And I think we
exceeded even our own expectations!
The 2016 NLPA Conference was held at the fascinating Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on October 24-25,
2016. From the first moment attendees walked in the facility, it was clear that this was going to be different than any other
procurement event they had ever been to. A wide variety of memorabilia and relics from early American history provided eye
candy as attendees made their way to the registration booth.
I personally kicked off the conference with my opening keynote, Washington, Lincoln & You: How To Become a Procurement
Legend of Tomorrow. The audience was skeptical how I could tie in the legacies of US presidents George Washington and
Abraham Lincoln into advice on cultivating a successful procurement career. However, I think they were equally shocked and
inspired when I demonstrated how they can use presidential lessons in their procurement careers.
Our other keynote speakers provided plenty of highlights as well.
Extraordinist Craig Karges blew the minds of attendees with a performance
that has to be seen to be truly appreciated.
And a living legend of a famous forensic pathologist, Dr. Cyril Wecht, served
as an example of how someone can have the same job as hundreds or
thousands of other people, yet rise to the top and be acknowledged as the
best in his/her field.
This year featured more interactivity than ever. There were two panel
discussions Make Procurement Great Again: How To Win The Campaign
For C-Level Support featuring Robert Rudzki (President of Greybeard
Advisors), Jim Coccagno (Executive Vice President of Calgon Carbon) and
David Butler (Vice President of Global Operations and Supply Chain for Philips
Health Care) and One Giant Leap For Procurement-Kind:
Breakthroughs in Procurement Technology featuring Al Jacobs (Director of
Global Relations for BravoSolution), Robert Yoho (Managing Partner at
JeffersonWood Energy Partners) and Darko Sepic, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3
(Managing Director of Procurement Services Croatia). Plus, there was a first-of-its-kind roundtable, facilitated by a new NLPA
innovation to be publicly-released soon!
Continued on Page 12
Page 2 Volume 6, Issue 11

Certification and
Training Spotlight
October 2016 Recipients of the SPSM Certification
Collin B., Sr. Dir., Strategic Procurement, Rhode Island, United States

Katherine O., Buyer, California, United States

Douglas C., Vice President, Virginia, United States

Patricia P., Senior Buyer, New Jersey, United States

Paul C., Senior Buyer, Texas, United States

Faith P., Purchasing Associate, Arizona, United States

Melanie F., Buyer, Texas, United States

Ivana R., Country Manager, Rumenka, Serbia

Tanja F., Specialist Contract Operator, Rijeka, Croatia

Sandy R., Purchasing Agent, Illinois, United States

Hugh H., Executive Director, Purchasing, New York, United States

Mylene R., Buyer Agent, Kansas, United States

Yu H., Buyer II, Texas, United States

V. Uday S., Process Developer, Hyderabad, India

DIPL. I., Senior Controller, Vienna, Austria

Ronnie S., Purchasing Agent, Texas, United States

Muhammad K., Procurement Professional, Ontario, Canada

Daniel S., Sr. Contracts Specialist, Texas, United States

Denise L., Material Services Mgr., New Hampshire, United States

Talha T., Contracts & Purchasing Coordinator, Texas, United States

Michelle L., Purchasing Agent, Florida, United States

Rok Z., Tactical Purchasing, marje-Sap, Slovenia

Sean L., Purchasing Specialist, Massachusetts, United States

Robert Z., IT Expert, Vienna, Austria

Doris M., Purchasing Manager, Virginia, United States

From The Purchasing Certification Blog

Contributions of a Great Purchasing Manager

by Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3
A member of the NLPA has an upcoming interview for a purchasing manager job and wanted to know how to answer the
interview question What will your contributions be?
Now, I dont know what this individuals contributions will be. But I can
tell you what contributions a great purchasing manager makes. They
1. Cost savings
2. Improved supplier delivery
3. Improved supplier quality
4. Better service to internal customers
5. Improved productivity of the purchasing department
6. Development of innovative solutions and out-of-the-box business
November 2016 Page 3

Key Elements of
Effective Negotiating
One of the most significant and visible measures of a procurement professionals success is the
results which they get from supplier negotiations. This presentation will provide an overview of the
primary causes of negotiation failures, as
well as the key elements of successful
The guest presenter, Ernest Gabbard, JD,
has participated in and analyzed hundreds
of negotiations to develop this substantive
summary of both failures and successes,
for every size and nature of negotiation.
This will be a fast-paced, yet
comprehensive review of one of the most
critical skills needed in the contemporary
procurement environment.

Register Now
This webinar is FREE for all members of the Next Level Purchasing Association.
To register, login to the association and navigate to the Webinars tab. There youll find a registration
link, be sure to enter a valid email address as attendance details will be sent to you by email.
Registrations may be limited.
Slides of this presentation will be made available to all members who have an All-Access Plan, and those enrolled in an SPSM
Certification Program or currently certified as an SPSM at least 30 minutes prior to the webinar. Basic members can learn more about
our enrollment plans online:

Page 4 Volume 6, Issue 11

From The Purchasing Certification Blog

Nearshoring or Offshoring?
Tips to choose the right strategy

Special thanks to Matt Chabanon of Source One Management Services for this guest post
When cost savings is the main driver of a sourcing initiative, many consider looking at what is available abroad, in countries
where both labor rates and material costs are known to be more competitive than in the US. Mexico, China, India, and Vietnam
are some places where these costs are generally below US rates. But, outsourcing in these countries involves risks not to
underestimate such as quality, logistics, or even business culture. Yes, outsourcing to these countries can result in significant
savings but only if youre well prepared and conduct the initiative properly. These projects require strategic planning, with a
clear roadmap to ensure success.
First things first, it is important to know which direction to take before going to market. The question here is: Which country
will best fit my initiative and be the most competitive at manufacturing my products? Take into consideration labor costs, raw
material availability, freight costs, and taxes to answer this question. For example, manufacturing labor rates in Mexico are
today more competitive than in China when converted into USD. Therefore, a company located in the US looking to outsource
labor intensive goods might want to focus on the Mexican market. However, if a company located in the US is looking to
outsource raw material intensive products, China or India might be a better option than Mexico, despite more costly freight
charges. Taxes are also to be considered before engaging a supplier in a sourcing initiative. Taxes can be complex and may
result in unexpected charges if not properly understood. For example, taxes might be applied to products made in Mexico with
raw material originating from Asia when being imported into the US, as per the NAFTA agreement.
Choosing the right country means also knowing the risks associated with it. Suppliers in some countries tend to have access to
limited infrastructure, technology or equipment, which can have an impact on quality or production and delivery lead times. For
example, India might seem more competitive than China. Indeed, Indias hourly labor cost for manufacturing averages $0.92
compared to $3.52 in China. However, Indias infrastructures, roads and ports are far less developed than the ones in China,
which can result in longer lead-times and poorer quality.
Another aspect to consider when outsourcing internationally is the countrys culture. Culture differences can lead to significant
impact on a project or business if not handled properly. The best example I like to always bring up is the one about South
Korean pilots who had the highest rate of plane crashes back in the 1990 due to a cultural issue. Extrapolated to the
manufacturing world, it is easy to imagine how cultural differences and miscommunication could lead to negative outcomes.
Hence, it is important to be flexible and be able to adapt to a different culture on some levels in order to minimize risks and
maximize benefits.
Execution is key to the success of an international outsourcing project. Once the right target is identified, suppliers must be
selected through a rigorous Request For Information (RFI) process, where their manufacturing capabilities, compliance with
ISO or other certifications, value added services and experience exporting goods to North America need to be vetted per a set
of requirements tailored to the sourcing project. Once the suppliers are properly selected and engaged in the sourcing
initiative, making sure they will provide a quote for the material or design you are looking for can be challenging, especially if a
language barrier applies. Depending on the commodity being outsourced, samples of the current products might have to be
sent to the suppliers in order for them to provide the most accurate quote.
Continued on Page 11
November 2016 Page 5

From The Purchasing Certification Blog

Media Guidelines For Purchasing Professionals

by Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3
One of the things that I would love to do more of is include more interviews with purchasing professionals in PurchTips. But a
historical barrier to this is that, when it comes to providing good interview material, purchasing professionals as a group
generally leave a lot to be desired.
Being a career purchasing professional myself, this is difficult to say. But its true.
So I can either complain about the problem or I can do something about it. Ill do the latter by introducing a few guidelines to
media interviews here. So, if youre asked to do an interview with a trade publication, newspaper, purchasing blog, or even me,
I recommend reading these guidelines first.

1. Understand Your Organizations Rules. Most

organizations will want to review, edit, and approve any
interview before it is published. And some organizations
want you to get permission from a corporate
communications group before you even agree to
participate in an article. Know what the rules are and
communicate them to your media contact as early as

2. Know The Timeline. All publications online or

offline have deadlines. An article that is due to go to
press on March 10 needs your final input far before
March 9. So know when the deadline is, how long an
internal review will take, and leave a little breathing room
for yourself so you know how fast you need to do your
part. If the publishers deadline is March 10 and your
internal review will take a week, you may want to have
your part done around February 21st.

3. Never Copy And Paste From A Manual. When

youre relaxing in bed at night, do you read your
purchasing department manual. Of course not! Why not?
Because it is booo-oooring! Writers depend on their
interview subjects to make their articles come alive. If
you paste your boring manual text into an email
interview, the writer will likely not want to use quotes
from you because it will bore the reader (i.e., their

4. Use Bullet Points Sparingly. For some reason, us

purchasing professionals love bullet points. And they can
be helpful in certain documents. But if youre answering
every question with bullet points, it is an indication that
youre not giving a good interview. You dont talk in bullet
points, so dont respond to an interview in all bullet
points. Use them only to answer questions like Can you
tell me five keys to achieving this type of success?

5. Write In Full Sentences. Writers love to use quotes.

Having your quotes used is a testament to your talent.

Continued on Page 14
Page 6 Volume 6, Issue 11

Rating A Buyers
Negotiation Effectiveness
Why Is Good Supplier Identification Not As Easy As It Sounds?
Allow me to share a story of my first $100,000
procurement negotiation, 20 years ago this
month. I had just finished negotiating with a
supplier. After weeks of back-and-forth, I got
the supplier to agree to several favorable
terms, including a price that was 20% below its
original offer. I was excited to tell my boss
about how effectively I negotiated.
When I told him my news, I expected him to be
pretty happy. But he looked up at me, stonefaced, and asked: Is that as low as they will
go? I replied, Well, yeah. And he said, How
do you know? And I stumbled through my
response, saying Wellthats the price we
ended up atwhen we concluded negotiations. And he probed further with How do you know that they wouldnt be willing to
go even lower if you continued the negotiation? I probably looked like a deer in headlights, because I didnt have a good
answer for him! Maybe I didnt negotiate so effectively after all!
So, how can you rate a buyers negotiation effectiveness, to know when maximum value has been extracted from a
negotiation? Here are two clues:

The supplier will say no to a request of yours at least twice. Suppliers know that todays buyers have a if you dont ask,
you wont get mentality. So, they think that buyers ask for everything, knowing that theyll have to settle for less.
Suppliers counter that with an initial refusal of a request to test the buyers seriousness and figuring that If its
important, theyll ask again. Therefore, giving up after one rejection is not advisable. However, if a supplier says it cannot
honor a request over and over, they may actually mean it.

The supplier will submit a best and final offer. Negotiations can wear suppliers down and make them feel like theyll
never be able to improve their offers enough to win your business. In these cases, they will often leave it all out there
and provide a proposal labeled best and final offer that contains another concession or two. While theres no guarantee
that the supplier truly couldnt move more, submitting a best and final offer is a risky and gutsy move by suppliers and
provides some evidence that you may have pushed them as far as you can without killing the deal.

Rating A Buyers Negotiation Effectiveness by Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3 was originally published in Edition 360 of PurchTips.
November 2016 Page 7

NLPA Member Question: What is the first go-to place for identifying suppliers?
The typical knee-jerk answer is the Internet. But that ignores a source that can help you avoid an embarrassing introduction
to a supplier you should already know. A source that reveals the suppliers that are the easiest to onboard. A source that
doesnt require that you engage with a third-party technology provider. What is that source?
That source is your own procurement system! Furthermore, a common problem among large organizations is that many
buyers do business with a single supplier and fail to leverage the organizations aggregate volume. Sometimes, the same
supplier will charge different prices to different departments in the same organization. Sometimes, a fellow employee may be
managing a supplier relationship that has an importance unbeknownst to you. Therefore, I always recommend checking your
own systems for suppliers first. You may uncover some important information!
I also recommend using more than one source to find an important supplier. Just because a supplier has done business with
your organization in the past, doesnt mean that it will be the best supplier for you in the future.
NLPA Member Question: Do we need to send a solicitation of interest before sending an RFP?
When your response rate is uncertain, it can be a good idea to request a notification of intent to bid from suppliers. However,
because more and more RFPs are being ignored by a jaded supply base, it can be even better to have personal conversations
with each supplier. This way, you can make them feel that they actually have a legitimate chance of earning your business, get
them excited about responding, and get assurance that they will indeed respond.
One of the most embarrassing things for a procurement department to endure is for no proposals to show up by a due date
that has been communicated to stakeholders. You always want to have a feel for how many proposals to expect.
Supplier Identification Lessons Learned by Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3 was originally published in Editions 361 of PurchTips.
Page 8 Volume 6, Issue 11

Price and Commodity Indices

Producers Price Index
The Producers Price Index (PPI) measures the change in the
wholesale selling prices that producers charge for goods and
services. It is typical for producers to offset rising prices by
passing on the higher costs to consumers in the form of
higher retail prices, therefore the PPI is often an early
indicator of inflation. Inflation is a decline in the purchasing
power of a currency, for example the USD, where each dollar
buys fewer goods and services than it could previously.
Interpreting the PPI: When the PPI rises, this signals an
increase in inflationary pressures. When the PPI falls, this
signals a decline of prices and may suggest an economic

Consumer Price Index

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is used as a measure of
inflation. To calculate the CPI, first a fixed basket of goods
is determined and a baseline of prices is calculated. Then
changes in price are calculated for each item, averaged and
weighted according to the importance of the item.
Interpreting the CPI: A higher CPI indicates that the total price
of the basket has increased and it now costs more to buy
that same basket of goods (inflation). A lower CPI indicates
that the total price has declined and now it costs less to buy
that same basket of goods (deflation).

Each month well include an updated graph of the PPI and

CPI as well as the PPI graph of an individual commodity. This
month we had a request to include Slaughter Turkeys.
Send your request for which commodities you would like to
see featured in this section in upcoming issues to:
To learn more about these and other indices, we recommend
reviewing the Inflation & Prices section of the Bureau of
Labor Statistics (US) website at: or by
researching indices calculated in your specific country.

November 2016 Page 9

Price and Commodity Indices

(Continued from page 9)

In addition to reporting on the indices published by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, Leading-Edge Supply
Management is proud to report on an independent index - the MMI metals price index. The MMI is a set of 10 indices, created
by Metal Miner, that track price changes in global metal markets. This month, well feature the October 2016 Automotive
What makes the MMI different than other indices that are already out there? A few things. For one, the MMI takes into
account global price fluctuations, not just domestic ones. For another, the MMI has a few industry-specific indices as Metal
Miner sees differences in how prices fluctuation between industries. For a third, the MMI is accompanied by analysis direct
from the source Metal Miner.
So, without further ado, here are the results for the October 2016 Automotive MMI as well as Metal Miners analysis.

Automotive MMI Flat, Sales Continue to Plateau

Major automakers posted lower September U.S. sales this week despite big consumer discounts, as pickup truck volumes fell
for market leaders General Motors and Ford.
With the top six U.S. market leaders reporting,
deliveries fell 0.6% from last year, but sales
were still strong at 17.8 million vehicles on a
seasonally adjusted annualized basis.
GM, the top-seller in the U.S., posted a 0.6%
decline. Ford reported an 8% drop, and Fiat
Chrysler Automobiles was down 1%.
The drops for individual automakers werent as
steep as last months and our Automotive MMI
held its value from September despite the dropoff in end-use sales. Automakers are still on
track to sell the second-most cars and trucks in
any year in U.S. history, but evidence that sales
plateaued in August is affirmed in the
September numbers. Theres little chance that
2015s sales record will fall in December.
Investors Abandoning PGMs?
More troubling for automotive metals is this weeks fall in investment demand for the catalyst metals, platinum and palladium.
People are not snapping up the incentives that automakers are offering and inventory is, naturally, piling up. The average
industry incentive increased by more than $400 in September compared with the same month a year ago, according to
executives at two automakers.
The increasing cost of PGMs was keeping the Automotive MMI in positive territory for most of the first three quarters of 2015.
The pullback in precious metals prices could pull the rug out from under automotive, too.
The Automotive MMI collects and weights 7 metal price points used in automotive production to provide a unique view into
automotive metal trends over a 30-day period.

NOTE: Next Level Purchasing is exploring the possibility of making actual metals price points available as an inexpensive service. If you might be interested
in such a service, please contact Kara Uhrlen, Business Development Manager, at or +1-412-294-1990 to help us
determine the level of interest and how rapidly we should pursue this option.

Page 10 Volume 6, Issue 11

Direct vs. Indirect Spend

by Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3
One of our members asked about the difference
between direct and indirect spend, so I thought Id post
my reply here so that others may benefit from the
definitions, too
Direct spend refers to purchases of goods and
services that are directly incorporated into a product
being manufactured. Examples include raw materials,
subcontracted manufacturing services, components,
hardware, etc.
Indirect spend refers to purchases of goods and
services that are not directly incorporated into a
product being manufactured. Examples include
computers, safety goggles, printed forms, office
supplies, janitorial services, equipment, furniture, etc.
In what type of activity does a procurement professional use this direct vs. indirect distinction?
Mainly in spend analysis when preparing a cost savings and sourcing strategy.
For example, a procurement professional may determine how much is spent on direct purchases and how much is spent on
indirect purchases. Then, the procurement professional would further classify the spend in each of those segments. Direct
spend may have classifications such as steel, hardware, plastics, subcontracted labor, etc. Indirect spend may have
classifications such as shop supplies, computer equipment, janitorial services, etc. Then, for one, several, or all of those
classifications, the procurement professional would develop a cost savings and sourcing strategy for each category.
Do you need more information on how to analyze your spend (both direct and indirect), put together a savings strategy,
conduct strategic sourcing, and save money for your organization?
If so, read about our online course Savings Strategy Development.
Speculating about the future of procurement, Ramos says that Procurement and accounts payable have no choice but to join
as one single function and that the new P2P capabilities will be designed to provide the best solution to serve the combined

Nearshoring or Offshoring? (Continued from Page 5)

In a recent strategic sourcing event, we were looking to source textile in China. Samples of our products were requested from
the very beginning by the suppliers we had invited, even though we provided them with detailed product specification and data
sheets. Similarly, samples of the quoted products can be requested from the suppliers in order to be tested and validated.
Suppliers that make the cut so far should then be (or should have been) audited through a factory on site visit before you place
an order. This can be done by factory audit consultants located in the same country than the selected supplier.
In summary, outsourcing internationally can generate a significant cost savings opportunity, only if prepared and executed
correctly. Knowing where to look, how to identify suppliers, and how to effectively execute a sourcing initiative are essential to
on-boarding the best-fit supply base. Supplier directories such as Alibaba or TradeIndia are useful tools for identifying suppliers
located abroad, but trade shows, like the IMTS 2016, can be an even better option as it allows you to speak directly with the
suppliers and get a better feeling of their capabilities.

November 2016 Page 11

Procurement History Was Made at the 2016 NLPA Conference (Continued from Page 2)
Five workshops produced tons of highlights. Two of those featured case
studies presented by procurement executives currently leading later-stage
procurement transformations. Darwins Evolution of Procurement was
conducted by HarbisonWalker Internationals Senior Director of Global
Procurement, Jason Borgesi, SPSM. And for The Procurement World Is Not
Flat, Erste Group CPO, Robert Semethy, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3 and the
aforementioned Darko Sepic, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3 narrated a successful
and continuing journey to world-class procurement at Europes Erste Group.
Other impressive workshop speakers included Susanne Wrage from Denali
Group, Frank McNally from Public Spend Forum, and Jennifer Ulrich from
Source One Management Services.

It was a great learning experience

for me at the NLPA Conference
2016. I am happy that my
company decided to invest in my
attendance at this great
international event. It was two
days well spent. Even though I did
not get to see much I enjoyed the
city of Pittsburgh and the river
boat ride was awesome not to
mention the entertainment
surprise. Congratulations to the
Team on planning such a great
event. I am looking forward to
attending many more NLPA
Nova Barnett, Procurement Officer
Office of Utilities Regulation, Jamaica

Our exhibit halls are always structured to provide for quality conversation
between procurement technology and service providers and procurement
professionals. Its not rows and rows of vendors vying for your attention like
carnival barkers. It is a true collaborative atmosphere where future-minded
procurement professionals got to pick the brains of our great sponsors,
BravoSolution and ThomasNet.
Perhaps the most value was derived from the power-packed general sessions
led by true procurement legends Dr. Soheila Lunney and Ernest Gabbard, JD
who provided actionable insights of historical proportions in their talks on
procurement metrics and negotiation, respectively.
At the NLPA, speaker quality is of utmost importance and part of our ongoing
procurement conference legacy. I am proud to report that we continued to
trend towards perfection as our average speaker rating rose again to 3.60/4
from 3.53/4 in 2014 and 3.42/4 in 2013.
Of course, fun is a common thread that has run throughout all of our
conferences. And 2016s was no exception, with two events that had
attendees smiling from ear to ear. First was a riverboat cruise aboard the
Gateway Clipper providing for great networking, an enjoyable environment, and
some surprise entertainment (which, if you missed, youll just have to guess at
what it was!). And second was a guided tour of the Heinz History Center. That
tour, while fun, also provided plenty of talk about the role of supply chain and
innovation in the history of industry. Pure awesomeness!
I aint gonna liesometimes we, at the NLPA, wonder how we could possibly
top our past conferences. But, once again, we surprised even ourselves by
hosting a procurement conference with more personality, better speaker
quality, unprecedented value, and funner fun than any other event in the
How can we possibly top the 2016 NLPA Conference? Wait and see, my friend.
Wait and see!
Thanks to all of our attendees, sponsors and speakers for helping us make
procurement history!

Page 12 Volume 6, Issue 11

Five Best Practices Before Launching

Additional Sourcing Initiatives
Editors Note: This article was written by Nicole Mahaffey with our partners at Source One Management Services on the Strategic Sourceror
Blog. It is being reprinted here with permission.

After undergoing numerous sourcing projects with a

client and beginning to look at the next wave of
projects, it is always important to reflect on why
projects were a success and what lessons can be
learned to improve processes and inefficiencies in
the engagement. Below is a list of five sourcing
best practices that should be established before
initiating a new round of projects.
1. Align with Corporate Sponsorship Ensure that the projects selected align with your stakeholder and that the timing of the
project plans align with the corporate initiatives. The stakeholder might want to better understand why certain projects
were identified, the timing around them, and the strategy that will be undergone to complete the project. This is an
opportunity for you to also express lessons learned about the first wave of projects and ensure that you understand the
scope, decision makers, etc.
2. Confirm the Main Point of Contact for Each Project While having a stakeholder from corporate involved in all the projects
is crucial, it is also important to have a main point of contact specific to each project. This person will be your escalation
prior to the corporate stakeholder and will advocate on your behalf if any obstacles arise. This project POC will also better
understand the project stakeholders involvement, concerns and will understand the category as a whole.
3. Conduct Initial Call with Corporate Sponsor, Project Point of Contact, and Any Additional Project Stakeholders This initial
kickoff call is important in order to discuss strategy, potential difficulties, opportunities, and confirm the specific
stakeholders for each project. Ironing out the strategy, goals, and potential roadblocks will help ensure the success of your
project. This call is also to go over roles and responsibilities. Specifically, which stakeholders will be involved in specific
steps of the process and the level of engagement from each.
4. Finalize Stakeholder Calls and Conduct Supplier Introductions Once you have conducted an initial call informing your
stakeholders about the upcoming initiatives, it is important to conduct individual calls with these stakeholders in order to
understand the supplier relationship from their perspective and to gain a better understanding about the initiative and the
goals they want to accomplish. These stakeholders will then provide you with the contact information for the supplier they
utilize in that category, which will allow you to validate the information and data they provided to you. Conducting a call
with the suppliers is also crucial to the success of the initiative because you will hear another side of the story and gain a
true understanding of the relationship and understand what needs to be modified or improvement.
5. Internal Kickoff Meeting In tandem to coordinating communication with your stakeholders, it is also important to keep
your team abreast of your lessons learned from the first wave of projects and to inform any new team members about the
best practices and important aspects of the account. Putting together a short slide deck and setting up an internal kickoff
meeting allows you to convey the key criteria about the account, establish internal processes, and improve any obstacles
discovered during the first wave of projects.
By following these 5 best practices, you will ensure success in your second round of sourcing projects. Incorporating the
lessons you learned will only improve the communication and relationship you have with your stakeholders. It shows that you
understand what was done well and what could be improved. And, but utilizing these best practices, you are sure to help your
team see the project success to fruition.
November 2016 Page 13

Media Guidelines For Purchasing Professionals (Continued from Page 6)

But if you dont write in full sentences either your quotes wont get used or, if they do get used, you wont sound very smart. If
asked something like What are your goals for the year? Our goals are focused on achieving more savings than last year,
improving supplier performance, and implementing a new Procure To Pay system is better than save more money, improve
supplier performance, implement system.

6. Dont Use Abbreviations. If youre responding to an email interview, write how you talk dont write how you write. For

example, you may write managing the SC and one of your co-workers may know that you meant managing the supply chain.
But in an email interview, if you mean managing the supply chain, write managing the supply chain!

7. Dont Be Curt. If all of your answers are shorter than the questions, it is a red flag that youre not doing a good job as an

8. Write Conversationally. Quotes come off best when the reader can imagine hearing your voice saying the words. Use

colorful words. When we presented our savings to management, their jaws practically hit the floor! is so much more useful
than Our savings exceeded the expectations set forth by management.

9. Always Be Ready For The Typical Last Question. Many reporters close the interview with a question like What else
might someone need to know about this topic? This is your chance to totally control the direction of the interview. Have the
perfect response scripted as the answer to this question will often get quoted word-for-word.

Page 14 Volume 6, Issue 11

Comprehensive supplier risk profiling provided at no additional

cost to SMART by GEP customers
CLARK, N.J., Nov. 2, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- GEP, a leading provider of procurement software and procurement
services to Fortune 500 and Global 2000 enterprises worldwide, announced today a strategic partnership with Global
Risk Management Solutions (GRMS) to incorporate deep-level supplier risk profiling to the SMART by GEP

procurement software platform. SMART by GEP, the industry's leading cloud-native sourcing, procurement and
spend management software platform will now provide access to comprehensive vendor risk profiling services from
GRMS at no additional cost to the GEP customers subscribed to the platform.
"Our partnership with GRMS is helping our clients get the kind of deep data required for rapid decision-making at
complex global organizations," said Suresh Visvanathan, global vice president of software sales at GEP. "They can
now, at the click of a button, receive a full risk profile from any vendor, and have that information at their fingertips in
the SMART by GEP system."
Gerard Smith, President of Global Risk Management Solutions, stated "Knowing your supplier is a top corporate
objective. By partnering with GEP, GRMS' services provide a world-class supply chain risk solution to our joint clients".
SMART by GEP's unified source-to-pay procurement software platform is native to cloud, touch and mobile
technologies. Offered as a SaaS/PaaS solution, SMART by GEP leverages cloud economics to deliver a solution that
easily handles the heaviest throughput and processing requirements of GEP's Fortune 500 and Global 2000 clients,
while eliminating burdensome infrastructure and support costs.
SMART by GEP is easy to set up, deploy and use, with no extensive training required. All GEP products are platformagnostic (they work with SAP, Oracle or any other major ERP or F&A system). And with superb support and service,
GEP is an industry leader in customer satisfaction.
SMART by GEP provides complete source-to-pay functionality in one user-friendly, cloud-native platform, inclusive of
spend analysis, sourcing, contract management, supplier management, procure-to-pay, savings project management
and savings tracking, invoicing and other related functionalities. The award-winning, SaaS-based S2P platform is
native to touch and mobile technologies, enabling users to work anywhere, any time on any device.
About GRMS
Global Risk Management Solutions (GRMS) is the recognized global leader in providing world-class supplier screening
solutions that assist companies to reduce exposure to supply chain risk. GRMS is the only company that can provide a
no cost customizable global supplier screening and management program in over 120 countries.
Headquartered in Newport Beach, California, GRMS serves a global clientele of companies and organizations in many
diverse industries ranging from mid-sized businesses to Fortune 50 companies. GRMS has been selected as a 2016
Spend Matters Top 50 Company to Watch and a 2016 CIO Magazine's 20 Most Promising Enterprise Risk
Management Solution Providers. To learn more about GRMS' No Cost Supplier Screening Services please visit
About GEP
GEP is a diverse, creative team of people passionate about procurement. We invest ourselves entirely in our client's
success, creating strong collaborative relationships that deliver extraordinary value year after year. We deliver
practical, effective procurement services and procurement technology that enable procurement leaders to maximize
their impact on business operations, strategy and financial performance.
Honored as Best Supplier at the EPIC Procurement Excellence Awards, GEP regularly wins accolades as both a
provider of innovative procurement technology and a broad range of procurement services. Among its recent
distinctions, GEP has been named Leader and Star Performer in Everest Group's Peak Matrix of Procurement
Services Providers, Leader in NelsonHall's NEAT Matrix of Global Procurement BPO Service Providers, Winner in the
HfS Blueprint Report on Procurement Outsourcing Providers, as well as one of Spend Matters 50 Companies to Know
and to the Supply & Demand Chain Executive 100.
Clark, NJ-based GEP has 12 offices and operations centers in Europe, Asia and the Americas. For more about
SMART by GEP, our cloud-native sourcing and procurement software platform, please visit
learn more about our comprehensive range of consulting and outsourcing services, please visit
November 2016 Page 15