3 ways to set your procurement team up for success in 2018

The end of the year presents an ideal opportunity to step out of the hustle and bustle of your procurement activities to take stock of your team’s accomplishments and look ahead to the new year.

Here are three things you can do this month to help you start strong in 2018:

1. Take a moment to appreciate the big picture

Procurement professionals have a unique opportunity to make a difference across many areas of an organization, by ensuring funds are spent to their fullest impact with perfect compliance. Not only that, procurement professionals carry out policies that lay the groundwork for social change (for example, by prioritizing sustainability or supporting women or minority-owned businesses).

However, it’s easy to lose sight of this impact when you’re juggling projects and priorities. Before the year is out, stop to take a look around—chances are you will see the results of your decisions this year in action across your organization. Don’t forget to make note of the year’s big wins, and keep this handy to remind you of your ‘why.’

2. Make a new connection in your organization

Gone are the days when procurement was relegated to the back office; increasingly, procurement teams are key players who act as trusted advisors to their internal stakeholders. However, there is still some work to do with shifting procurement’s perception and visibility, and you can be a driver of this in your own organization by reaching out and making sure you are a familiar face to stakeholders.

Carve out some time this month to connect with key internal clients over coffee, by phone, or even through a handwritten note. Opening these lines of communication now will fuel better collaboration down the road, and enable you to serve your clients — and ultimately drive business value — more effectively throughout the coming year.

3. Look for ways to streamline and improve your current procurement process

Predictions for 2018 will no doubt herald new trends shaking up the industry, but it’s no secret to anyone that procurement is in a state of flux. In the current atmosphere of greater scrutiny, policy tightening, and the imperative to do ‘more with less,’ the processes and tools of yesterday just aren’t cutting it (we’re looking at you, binders and Excel).

Take some time to evaluate your procurement process and consider any possible sources of fragility, redundancy, or even frustration. Perhaps it’s in the boxes of paper submissions that keep you chained to your desk after hours? Or maybe the unwieldy enterprise software ‘solution’ that you can’t get your evaluators to use?

Consider how you can set your team up to work more effectively and add more value to your organization in the new year. If procurement software is part of that plan, take a deeper dive into the subject with our eBook.

With just a few short weeks before your team breaks for a much-needed holiday, make sure to set aside some time to celebrate your accomplishments and prepare to tackle whatever challenges the new year has in store.