Our first session of the excelerateds2p Global Procurement Summit 2023 focuses on the importance of change management and adoption within procurement transformation projects. As the business landscape continues to evolve, the panel discuss why this has never been more critical to success.

Joining host Joe Bellofiore, General Manager – APAC, at excelerateds2p, to discuss are Nathan Gardner, Director of Procurement AP at Coca-Cola Europacific Partners, Gwen Inglis, Chief Procurement Officer at Veolia, Michael Dosh, Senior Solution Specialist at SAP and Craig Graham, Head of Intelligent Spend and Business Network at SAP.

We’ve rounded up the key takeaways from the session, however you can watch the full episode on demand here.


1. Being more accountable

Procurement’s role in the organisation is changing, with CPOs and the function as a whole enjoying more influence. Craig Graham says that a defining characteristic of that in leading organisations was board-level and shareholder accountability.

You talk about leaders in industry or leaders in their market, what are they doing differently? Board level accountability and shareholder accountability has never been stronger.’ That impacts a number of key outputs, including sustainability, he says. ‘Having sustainable procurement practises is now a measurement and an expectation for boards. We have accountability to our suppliers to make sure that we’re doing the right thing.

Board-level accountability is helping procurement to wield greater influence with key stakeholders

2. Procurement as Commercial Advisors

Within that context of greater influence, Joe Bellofiore emphasised the role of procurement as commercial advisors to the business, discussing the need for the function to showcase its value beyond cost savings.

‘You have that entrepreneurial ability to be able to say what value look likes in a scenario, and what identify the outcome we need to deliver on that.’

Demonstrate value in a variety of scenarios highlights procurement’s value beyond cost-saving


3. Stakeholder Engagement

Part of that transformation journey, as Michael Dosh stressed, is understanding the importance of stakeholder engagement and involving various departments throughout. There is a critical need to define value for all concerned.

‘Define what value means for different stakeholders because the benefits that somebody in accounts payable is going to achieve from this programme are going to be very different to the benefits of somebody in procurement.’

For successful transformations, all stakeholders need to be engaged and involved. Define what value means for them.


4. Change Management

As part of that process, Craig Graham emphasised the critical role of change management in ensuring successful outcomes, underscores the need for investment, training, and usability to support adoption.

Without the right change management, the customer doesn’t get a successful outcome. You can’t just land the system and then everything’s going to be fantastic. It’s really, really important that we work closely with our customers, with our partners to absolutely get the value and the adoption of what they’ve invested in.’

Effective change management is crucial for successful outcomes


5. Data and Resilient Supply Chains

Michael Dosh highlighted the increasing influx of data from various sources and systems, leading to data silos, adding that leading organisations are working to avoid that trap.

When I think about what leading organisations are doing, what we’re seeing is that some companies are really placing a huge focus on getting access to reliable data so that they can then extract insights to be more proactive with how they’re managing their supply chain and their overall supplier risks.

Avoid siloed and unreliable data by consolidating sources in a single platform.


6. Digital Training

Nathan Gardner discussed the importance of self-service training and on-demand learning, highlighting the effectiveness of tools like WalkMe, which provide in-process guidance and detailed instructions for users.

‘Generally people are time poor. So to then put time in a diary to attend a long training session, is not top of anyone’s agenda. Whereas if they can get in, use the system and have prompts on the screen, that really helps people, particularly new users that are not as familiar with the systems.’

Make training flexible, process-driven and easy to use to ensure engagement


7. Supplier Engagement and Efficiency

Gwen Inglis spoke of the value of digital conversations with suppliers and the mutual benefits of efficiency gains, drawing attention to the importance of supplier enablement and data to demonstrate success.

‘It come back to the business case. It is not just not the value of what we will see, but what will we see as being a customer of choice.’

Communicate with your suppliers during digital transformation – it’ll benefit both parties in the long-run.