Keith, an entrepreneur, business consultant and procurement expert, loves this question. Why? Because, he says, we all think we know the real facts. The pain points, the frustrations, the reasons your customers love you (or not!)
But what about your wider team? What do they think and how does this differ to your view?
Have you really got a grasp on what is true, in other words, do you have one version of the truth?
A task Keith loves to do with new clients is ask them to take his Procurement Xcelerator™ scorecard. In just 2 minutes, he can get a great read on the health of their procurement set up.
This covers areas from key purchasing controls, such as spend data and contract management, to targets and objectives, such as accountabilities and measures, and finally supplier management, including areas such as functional alignment and joint business planning.
The most interesting aspect of this is what Keith calls the calibration phase. This is where a number of colleagues across the organisation get to see all the results of the scorecard, and can then discuss how the results differ, in which key areas, and most importantly, why.
This exercise does a few things:
1. It challenges the organisation to think deeply about the issues highlighted.
2. It fosters open dialogue around the opportunities this presents.
3. It provides powerful insights and actionable areas for improvement.
4. It helps to get the organisation to one version of the truth – the holy grail!
Here’s an example of how this might play out using real answers from a client to 4 of the 9 Procurement Xcelerator™ scorecard questions.
Here we go:
Question 1: Is your current spend data broken down by category and supplier?
Answer: All colleagues said yes, which is great and suggest this is a real strength in the business and a core foundation to build on. Great start!
Question 2: Are targets and objectives in place with your suppliers, clearly understood and reviewed regularly?
Answer: All colleagues said no, which is actually great as they all agreed, but clearly a weakness that needs to be addressed. Still going well!
Question 3: Is there a structured meeting cadence in place with regular review sessions across key decision makers?
Answer: 3 different answers, yes, no, and some! This clearly suggests inconsistencies in how this business operates and therefore is a great opportunity to improve and drive performance. Work to do!
Question: Do you have category and supplier business plans in place?
Answer: Some, no, and some. With mixed answers again, this area could be a real threat as other competitors who are more organised in this space will be taking advantage by being clear on expectations. Definitely more work to do here.
So there you have it. A simple question posed to you about how well you understand your business, and from a procurement perspective, a tangible way of ensuring the answer is “absolutely, we have one version of the truth!”
Why not take the Procurement Xcelerator™ scorecard today (simply visit www.kwrightconsultancy.co.uk) and start your journey of discovery!
Keith Wright is a seasoned entrepreneur and commercial leader with 30+ years expertise in the building industry. Renowned for his strategic approach, he has saved millions of pounds throughout his career as a procurement expert. With an unwavering focus on value creation, he continuously seeks growth opportunities and operational efficiency for his clients.
As a trusted business consultant, he has collaborated with numerous market-leading companies, developing tailor-made procurement solutions aligned with their unique needs and goals. In 2021, Keith founded K Wright Consultancy after a successful corporate career, aiming to share his procurement knowledge and expertise with business owners, leaders, entrepreneurs, and investors to accelerate their growth. Within just two years, his consultancy firm has supported 22 organisations creating value in the multiple millions.