The past year has been a rollercoaster. The disruption that the pandemic has brought strategic sourcing has forced organizations to pivot and readjust. Procurement has been under immense pressure to evolve past these supply chain difficulties just for survival.
But moving forward into 2021 and beyond, organizations not only want to survive, but they also want to thrive. And that will require an evolution in the way functions practice strategic sourcing. Arkestro is committed to helping sourcing teams achieve their goals in 2021. So, we thought a great way would be to provide you with three simple strategies for better sourcing in this “new normal” era.
Many companies were able to weather the storm caused by the pandemic, lack of reliable tools, and lack of data, but there are always new challenges in sourcing.
With the demand never slowing down, and in some cases ramping up, sourcing needed materials for product offerings that began to feel like Mission Impossible. The pandemic shone a spotlight on strategic sourcing strategies, illuminating the cracks that most organizations never knew were there.
This unforeseen devastating event has become the catalyst for change. The way we see it at Arkestro is, this can be a time for reassessment, restructuring, and implementing new strategic sourcing software to predict sourcing opportunities, improve cycle time, and never leave money on the table.
Well into 2021, now is the time for analysis and action to uncover risks across the supply base, address the digital divide, and prepare for what happens next. These three strategic sourcing tips are vital areas companies can focus their energies on for better strategic sourcing.
Ensuring you have both solid and reliable global and local suppliers will be critical moving forward. If you were a company that centralized buying before, you were most certainly faced with an intense squeeze. The global situation is still constantly shifting, and restrictions and regulations regarding operations and functionality vary in each region of the world. Even today, as we continue to fight through the pandemic, the ability to turn to and rely upon local resources has never been more crucial.
Besides diversified sources of suppliers, one also needs to carefully and purposefully select suppliers who are creative, innovative, and agile. If the past year has shown us anything, it is that organizations need to be working with suppliers that are flexible and ready to adapt to whatever is thrown their way. This may mean making new and seemingly risky decisions, like opting to go with a small, lesser-known local supplier who shows these vital qualities versus your previous go-to preferred larger supplier. Often, you will even be pleasantly surprised to discover that it’s the smaller outlets that can be far more flexible.
Don’t Underestimate Data
Simply put, data talks, and access to it can help you be more predictive. Analytics allow you to keep tabs on how you are doing, tracking your progress with clear and measurable numbers. Using Arkestro for example, with any shifts, like numbers spiking or dropping, you are instantly alerted to a trend. This enables you to pivot to address whatever issue was at the root of the dip or rise. Arkestro is able to help you even predict the future, essentially.
Data can also help with supply management, which needs to be central and distributed to avoid any potential hoarding situations or other shortages. Arkestro’s Predictive Procurement Orchestration Platform can help your company decide exactly how much product you need to allocate to where, which prevents any surplus or undersupply issues.
Don’t Be Stiff: Stay Agile
Agility is a trend for 2021 and is a business imperative. We have seen how organizations have to be willing to adapt to thrive. The only constant in the world is change. With change management and risk mitigation in mind, how your organization faces challenges and can react (and adjust) to these changes as they come will directly influence success. It means that flexibility, agility, and implementing the right tools to help those efforts is crucial.
When strategic sourcing teams use Arkestro, supplier partnerships strengthen and grow. Through mutual transparency and real-time collaboration, you signal the importance of supplier relationships to your sourcing team and plant a vital seed for the foundation of your partnership with strategic suppliers. With the messaging and tasks feature, increased transparency and collaboration grows. Acting as a centralized source of truth for all sourcing activities, buyers can communicate directly with suppliers, eliminating the need for back-and-forth emails and gray areas, consequently developing into a mutually beneficial partnership.
In these volatile times, Arkestro helps your business stay ahead of the market. We are the first and only predictive sourcing software provider that can help you get better quotes faster and see market trends before they happen.
To discover how you can cultivate your most successful partnerships and stay head of market trends, visit arkestro.com to learn more.