Despite the fact that procurement sees tail spend management as a top priority, it may be necessary to build a business case before securing buy in or building a tail spend program proof of concept. Making this investment up front will set the program up for success in the long-term. The most vocal stakeholders early in the process are often the strongest supporters later on.
Map out a business case that you want to prove.
The timing must be right, and the positioning and ROI have to be targeted to the decision makers that need to be won over. It has to be clear to all participants what they will achieve before they will be confident enough to lend their support to the program.
Pilot a small area of spend where you have direct control and stakeholder advocates.
By demonstrating quick wins in a category of spend where success is likely, there is evidentiary support to share when approaching other categories of spend and stakeholders.
Build an ‘advisory board’
By forming a procurement advisory board and getting them involved in building the tail spend management pilot, the pilot will be made more successful and those people will then have the experience they need to implement the program in other areas of the company.
Listen to what matters to senior stakeholders.
It may require a series of one-on-one conversations or roundtable to win over the decision-makers associated with certain categories of spend. It will take additional energy to allay their fears, sell them on the benefits, and take their needs into account in the final program design.
For more information on Getting A Grip On Your Long Tail Spend, listen to this podcast interview with Tom Cicale of Merck and Sameer Sharma from WNS Denali.