Reducing Spend With a Deft Touch
The right sourcing approach can substantially cut professional services spend, often improving relationships at the same time. All without alienating your business units.
There's a notion in the procurement community that selecting and negotiating with professional service firms – such as law firms, consultants, advertising agencies, and the like – is best left to business units and senior level executives.
The feeling is that the professional services arena is fraught with too many emotional and political landmines, risks to careers, and even to the company -- let the C-Level people choose their own favorite accountant firms and financial advisors.
In addition, many procurement execs feel that it's impossible to source management consultants and creative marketing services the same way you'd select a freight hauler or roofing contractor. This intangible, intellectual work is just not amenable to the same procurement principles and strategies.
We disagree. In fact, in this 'down' economy, it's more critical than ever to find ways to control spend that can easily reach a sizable percentage of a company's costs.
In our day-to-day work, we see more and more companies saving substantial amounts of money on professional services, often while receiving better service from their providers at the same time, with much less risk to the company or the bottom line. Happiness is watching your lawyers bid their rates down by 20%.