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Stability, Efficiency and Speed: Benefits of a Sourcing COE

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Procurement pros around the world recently joined a JAGGAER webinar to discover how they can drive more value in their global organizations by implementing a Sourcing Center of Excellence (COE). JAGGAER Vice President of Operations, Dan Willmer and sourcing expert, Prab Randhawa of Illinois Tool Works, laid out a step-by-step example of how organizations can use technology to embed and mandate their preferred sourcing processes. They challenged attendees to use technology to tie together the expertise, resources and processes necessary to truly drive value through sourcing.

Dan began the conversation by reminding the group that Henry Ford’s assembly line model teaches us that when we specialize in something, we get better at it.

“People learn from their own processes how to get better,” he said.   “They are often in the best position to find weak spots and optimize their processes to make improvements.”

The Webinar outlined several ways a sourcing COE can drive value for business:

  • Better efficiency through centralized technology, people and processes
  • Reduced risk as a result of cross-project visibility into quality metrics
  • Improved alignment by ensuring standardized, consistent processes to improve productivity and communication
  • Better supplier management and performance through KPI tracking, risk assessment and supply base rationalization. Make this a conversation. How can suppliers work with you to achieve more value?

Prab, who built the center of excellence for ITW, offered his story as inspiration for anyone getting started. ITW’s global operations delivers products across industries such as automotive, food equipment, construction and electronics. The organization is highly de-centralized and runs multiple ERP’s around the world. In short: it’s hard to imagine a more difficult environment in which to attempt to centralize sourcing.

“You don’t have to conquer the world on day one” he said.  “Start small and increase your sphere of influence as you demonstrate success.”

Dan and Prab also covered trouble shooting tips for procurement pros who aren’t seeing the value they expected from Sourcing, as well as tips for making sure communication does not sabotage your efforts to get your COE off the ground.

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