Sourcing Champions helps client enhance digital category management

16 February 2022 3 min. read

Procurement consultancy Sourcing Champions has recently completed the delivery of its Digital Category Strategy Program at one of the world’s largest financial services institutions.

With the aim of enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of its third party spend, Amsterdam-based Sourcing Champions together with software provider Cirtuo was brought in by the institution’s procurement function to help with professionalising category management.

Among the issues the client was facing: limited visibility in spending, a fragmented approach for category management across the regions (Europe, United States, Asia), suboptimal planning, and a lack of a digital backbone that streamlines the category management process.

How a financial institution enhanced its digital category management

As a result, the financial services institution faced a (too) high procurement spend, and moreover, business stakeholders were not provided optimal support due to insufficient transparency and agility in processes.

Working with consultants from Sourcing Champions, a three-month improvement and upskilling program was delivered to around 40 strategic buyers across the globe. The first step saw the implementation of key category management principles, after which around 40 categories (responsible for 80% of total spend) were blueprinted for further enhancement.

Among the categories identified were services procured in the areas of: consulting, marketing, human resources, legal, real estate, information technology, software, and data hosting.

With the category strategy outlined, several improvement initiatives were designed and rolled out. Throughout this process, the institutions’ buyers were guided, trained and coached by Sourcing Champions. Progress was monitored and tracked through an overarching Project Management Office, further tasked with driving continuous learning and improvement.

“Our aim was to help the procurement function with turning procurement into a real competitive advantage,” explained Robert Waalder, founder and CEO of Sourcing Champions. “Our Category Strategy Program focuses on collaborating your category stakeholders to identify unique strategies and translate them into clear initiatives to get real results.”

The program was delivered with support of Cirtuo, a provider of AI-enabled category management software. “The software of Cirtuo enables the entire end-to-end category management process, and supports the digitisation of key processes.”

With the program now completed, Waalder said that “multi-million euro’s in savings were identified” and are “currently in the process of being realised.” He outlined five other key benefits:

  1. Strong increase in the category expertise of buyers and stakeholders
  2. Strengthened category strategies for future planning
  3. Initiative creation and tracking systems for current/future needs and goal-setting
  4. Enhanced stakeholder relation and collaboration
  5. Hundreds of millions of euros in additional savings

The full project testimonial of Sourcing Champions and Cirtuo can be downloaded on this page.