After almost 2 years without in person events, bringing together a couple hundred Procurement practitioners and software vendors is kind of a big deal. Especially if it is the first time you attend an event in the US. We attended the SIG Spring Tech Summit ‘22 with our customer Gordon Food Service to discuss how a hybrid technology landscape can drive efficiency and savings.
Sourcing Industry Group (SIG) is the leading source for Procurement education and certification in North America. Each year, SIG hosts two flagship events with the Procurement Tech Summit in Spring and the Executive Summit in the Fall. The events cover the status quo and future of the Procurement profession, with digitalization being a major theme in both events, and attract a broad group of senior decision-makers.
For the first time in the history of Archlet, we participated in a live event in North America. The SIG Procurement Technology Summit was an easy choice for us to make an appearance in the US market thanks to the broad industry focus, the high degree of senior decision-makers in the audience and the close collaboration with SpendMatters, an independent Procurement Technology analyst firm, who nominated Archlet a Future 5 ProcureTech Vendor in 2021. We talked to SIG CEO Dawn Tiura in earlier this year to explore what this nomination means to us.
The event was packed with keynote and breakout sessions, opportunities to discover innovative solutions, and discuss industry topics and trends. It also provided plenty of opportunity to network and mingle with peers. Discussions covered everything from opportunities to increase efficiency, new ways to unlock savings, the importance of data, and how to manage risk in the new normal.
The keynotes provided an inspiring overview on how companies like Mattress Firm, Northwestern Mutual and others have approached their digitalization journey. With a high focus on indirect Procurement, stories of winning over stakeholders, starting small and building momentum, or successes and failures in identifying the right technology to support Procurement ambitions resonated well with the audience.
Other sessions focused more on the mindset required to make the Procurement digitalization journey successful. To close the digital acceleration gap, the old approach of buying a final solution that solves all requirements needs a serious overhaul. Instead, nimble solutions that iterate quickly, incorporate customer feedback and release new features in a matter of days or weeks is more aligned with the agility Procurement is seeking. Unfortunately, Procurement is often afraid to take their own medicine when it comes to buying technology for themselves.
Smaller Procurement teams tend to be more willing to accept this mindset and approach to grow with their partners. Learning from Canva and Fanatics on their journey to build Procurement in fast-moving organizations was very interesting and a good reminder that Procurement can be as agile as the business if it wants to be. Overall, the breakout sessions provided plenty of opportunity to find inspiration on a variety of topics like contract risk management, improving purchasing and payment processes, building a tech roadmap, winning over stakeholders, and best practices around ESG.
Archlet invited Gordon Food Service to discuss how advanced sourcing analytics & scenario optimization capabilities provided new ways to bring speed and efficiency into negotiations and identify new savings opportunities. The high energy delivery of Heather Bradshaw and Kelvin Devries paid tribute to our shared values of putting users at the forefront of what we do and making holistic decisions. Gordon Food Service shared how they create better insights by analyzing award scenarios that include non-commercial data points and can move faster into negotiations with their suppliers. It allows them to make more holistic decisions and create more savings for their business while improving their agility. The journey and benefits of moving from a homegrown solution towards Procurement suites and ultimately into a hybrid tech stack was nicely described by Kelvin during the session. As this approach is quickly becoming the norm, the attendees of the breakout left with a clear understanding of how to get ready for the journey and how to pick the right partner.
This was echoed by SpendMatters when announcing the Future 5 Procurement Technology providers on the main stage. Archlet received the recognition for our unique approach to making scenario optimization accessible to all Procurement teams in all their sourcing events.
Most importantly though, the SIG Spring Tech Summit ’22 was an opportunity to network and mingle with peers and get to know each other in a relaxed environment. The SIG team made us feel like royalty, the location was amazing, the food and drinks delicious, the attendees hungry for social engagement. We had a blast, and we will for sure be back for the SIG Fall Executive Summit ’22!
Get in touch if you want to hear more about our journey towards a hybrid tech landscape with Gordon Food Service or discuss how Archlet can help you make holistic decisions that drive efficiency and savings!