In his recent book Global Supply Chain Ecosystems, Mark Millar wrote, “…today’s supply chains encompass complex webs of interdependencies, frequently spanning the globe, designed and deployed to optimize critical attributes – such as speed, agility, and resilience – that drive competitive advantage.” That’s where contract management strategies can make all the difference.
It’s not news that enterprises are dealing with more contracts and more complexity than ever before. Increasing numbers of stakeholders have skin in the game and creating, executing, and managing contracts plays a crucial role in ensuring a company’s profitability. There are plenty of news stories about legal and financial risk involved when contracts are poorly managed.
It is the worst question Procurement ever faces. C’mon – you know that procurement savings question I’m talking about. That horrible, terrible question from Finance for which there is no good answer…
If Procurement worked so hard and saved all of this money, WHERE IS IT?
Terms like eSourcing, ePurchasing, and eProcurement that describe the electronic “source-to-pay” processes have been established for some time, probably a decade or more. But when they become interchangeable, or are used inconsistently within our industry, it makes understanding their differences and why they’re important confusing.
I am honored and proud to take the reigns as president and CEO of the company. A lot has happened. One thing for sure: our business is coming together.
Before I entered the world of software and technology, I spent over 10 years in manufacturing. I hear engineers often discussing what’s called “signal-to-noise” ratios. Like tuning an old AM radio, sometimes you get a good signal and the background noise is minimal. At other times, the static and buzzing is so intense that you cannot hear what the station is trying to broadcast. This is where enterprise CLM comes in.
Remember the days when you asked for information from a vendor and they would send you a slick brochure? Some in fancy packages, others oversized (so they stand out). When you asked for a proposal, you’d get a 30-page bound book while others emailed you a PDF, or you got invited to a private page on their server to access the information.
I have been blogging about contracts at the core of business for some time now, but it appears there is still some confusion as to what the best way is to get started – a holistic approach or a functional/departmental approach. CLM vs. ECLM. The answer is actually both. The term CLM or Contract Lifecycle Management is used right along with ECLM or Enterprise Contract Lifecycle Management. One letter (E), however, makes all the difference in the world; even though it is most likely you will begin with a departmental or functional approach, your planning and thought process must be around the enterprise.
ISM’s annual supply management conference is just around the corner, May 3 – 6 in Phoenix. If you haven’t yet made plans to attend, there’s still time to look into it. If your travel plans are all in place, then you have to make some tough decisions about which breakout sessions to attend.
Let’s consider this familiar situation: it’s the last day of the fiscal quarter, and everyone in your company involved in the contract process is frantically working on extensions, approvals, and special requests. Since each contract is being reviewed and adjusted manually by the legal team, it could very well be the wee hours of the morning before anyone gets to head home – especially if anything unexpected comes up.