2017 Procurement Strategy - Award Winning BROWZ

Sep 23, 2016

In a continuing move away from the traditional back office role, the CPO is considered a valuable member of the executive team. In this evolution away from a supporting role to a value added department, CPO's are constantly on the look out for new and trending procurement strategies. These procurement strategies move beyond the traditional objective to provide savings and now feature a more prominent role in leading the organization against risk.

According to a 2015 Procurecon Study, "The role of the CPO continues to grow in strategic influence, bolstered by procurement’s track record of eliminating waste and streamlining operations. The change is reflective of larger transformations occurring around the department as a whole. What began as a department deeply entrenched in a tactical position within the business is undergoing a period of ascendency, where CPOs are being counted among vital partners guiding the businesses they serve."

This revised leadership role and emerging procurement strategies include consideration not only direct but indirect purchasing. Historically indirect spend and the hiring of third parties was been an often overlooked yet critical business function. This is particularly true when considering the vetting, screening and prequalification of third party contractors. These organizations are turning to BROWZ to assist them in the process of prequalification and contractor management.

While the idea of prequalification is not new, the level and depth that organizations require their contractors to comply with is. Unfortunately, the hiring organizations often underestimate the time and resources required to both prequalify and manage the ongoing compliance of their supply chain. 

BROWZ has been assisting the worlds largest global organizations in screening and vetting their supply chain partners since 2001. BROWZ provides their award winning solutions to more than 33 industries, including the worlds largest utilities. Attracting the attention of the worlds most respected brands, BROWZ shares their best practices with their clientele and together to implement prequalification programs. BROWZ invites the client's supply chain members to register, complete online assessments and provide required documentation. BROWZ then validates that information on the clients behalf, and logs into the BROWZ SaaS based solution to view these results.

In a recent case study with BROWZ client Xcel Energy, Joe Conrad offered valuable insights regarding the necessity of the BROWZ solution. 

Xcel Energy started a formal contractor safety program in 2009, creating a department and developing a robust safety program that included, among other things, developing pre-qualification criteria and contractor review processes, and solidifying relationships with contractors.

While the program they had developed was robust, they soon discovered that the system they had custom built to manage it was not. 

“Shuffling paperwork between contractors and our supply chain organization was becoming quite labor-intensive,” Joe said. “This meant our project managers had less time to manage projects and project safety, as so much of it was dedicated to just getting contractors approved.” 

By 2012, they decided to look for a new system that specialized in contractor pre-qualification. They selected BROWZ, which provides a complete, online solution and services for prequalifying, assessing, and monitoring contractor compliance.

Today, Xcel Energy manages over 1,100 contractors in their BROWZ system.

Since the inception of the BROWZ solution in 2001, they have been recognized by a number of organizations for both their contractor prequalification and contractor management solutions. This recognition includes their patented software, and award winning mobile apps as well as the critical service component that addresses the bandwidth needs required by client originations.

According to BROWZ Vice President, Brett Armstrong procurement is rapidly adopting their solution as a procurement strategy. "Early on, the departments such as safety and risk were primarily interested in this type of solution. But today the buyer landscape is very different, procurement is increasingly more involved and partnering with safety, operations and legal in order to protect the interests of their organization and mitigate risk," says Armstrong. "Over the last twelve years, we've seen a lot of change. Proactive procurement organizations are no longer willing to accept unnecessary risk, they are actively engaged working with their peers through out their organizations. Safety is till very much at the heart of our solution, but it is one element of the overall supply chain assessments we deliver. "

You can learn more about BROWZ' award winning procurement software, and strategic solutions here.