it management

There is so much that goes into running a business that many of us often don’t consider. In addition to all the materials and inventory you have to purchase to create the product and services that your company sells, you also need to purchase the items necessary to keep daily operations running smoothly. From coffee to staples and everything in between, these minor costs can often add up if you are not careful. Here is a look at the procurement process and how improving it can reduce costs for your business.

What is Procurement?

Procurement refers to the process of obtaining goods and services on behalf of a business. Every company needs the proper resources to be able to run efficiently. Procurement is the act of marshaling those resources in a way that is as strategic and cost-effective as possible. No matter how much revenue your business is bringing in – if you’re overspending on coffee filters, toilet tissue, or hotel rooms for your employees, you’re going to face liquidity issues at some point. Establishing a smart procurement process for vital goods related to the running of your business can help immensely in making sure that you stay within your budget and maintain a healthy work environment.

How Does Procurement Work?

The procurement process will vary depending on the industry and individual business, but there are a few standard stages that a procurement officer or manager will go through to get the best deals on the inventory that is needed.

The procurement process typically includes:

  • The process of selecting vendors
  • Establishing payment terms
  • Strategic vetting
  • Product selection
  • Negotiation of contracts
  • Purchasing of the goods

So, while procurement does involve the purchasing of necessary goods and services on behalf of a company, there are more steps to the process than simply placing an order. You can’t just walk down to the grocery store or office supply depot to make purchases. While this may work occasionally when you are in a pinch, it’s not the most efficient or cost-effective way to obtain necessary products.

Instead, procurement managers are typically tasked with contacting vendors directly and negotiating bulk orders and discounts. It’s also the responsibility of the procurement manager to decide on the types of products needed and the level of quality. It’s always wise to look for the best value – while you may be able to save some money going with the cheapest option, if the pens you order keep leaking ink or the paper towels are too flimsy to effectively clean up spills, you’re going to face some problems. But stocking the kitchen with high-end gourmet coffee and refreshments every day may also lead to budget concerns. So, it’s wise for those in charge of procurement to go after the products that offer the most value for the money, as opposed to the cheapest or most extravagant.

How to Improve Your Business Procurement?

Procurement is a delicate process that can make or break your business. Certain goods and services are necessary to facilitate daily operations. However, you don’t want to get out of control and let your overhead costs eat into profits. Procurement is a delicate art that requires a thorough understanding of office culture, supply chains, and proper negotiating techniques. Quality procurement can save your business hundreds if not thousands of dollars per year, which can be better spent reinvesting in the business or paying shareholders.

One way smart business owners handle this complex task is by hiring a professional procurement company to handle this process. These organizations already have relationships with reliable vendors and have developed the infrastructure to supply your business with quality goods at a reasonable price. These businesses offer value by improving procurement efficiency and passing the savings on to you. If you are struggling to keep overhead costs low and aren’t sure how to approach vendors to effectively reduce these costs, you should consider using a professional procurement company. The ease and efficiency they offer will be well worth the price and will undoubtedly save you money over time.