Welcome back to another installment of Whitepaper Wednesday here on the Purchasing Certification Blog. Today, I’ll be reviewing a whitepaper entitled “Convergence of Travel and Procurement” from Procurement.travel and thebeat.travel.

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It has become more and more apparent over the years: leading procurement departments have been expanding their influence over spend and earning responsibility for sourcing new services categories like health benefits, fleet management, and travel. However, there is a reason that these categories were previously outside of Procurement’s portfolio: they each have specialized nuances. The whitepaper says “[travel and meeting purchasing] uses perplexing vernacular, technology and third-party providers, as well as reams of documentation. And there’s no doubt that moving people is vastly more complex than moving goods.”

The whitepaper expands on the complexities of travel procurement by saying “…while travel services comprise just one commodity category, it can involve hundreds of contracts. Like other service categories, it is complex in that it is difficult to control, considered personal by employees and can quickly impact sales and productivity. Switching suppliers takes time, pricing can be mysterious, distribution is fragmented and comparisons are tough.”

That being said, the whitepaper concludes that “While travel itself has unique characteristics, managing it and buying it are undeniably on a path that adopts strategic procurement methodologies.”

While the whitepaper is not a step-by-step guide on how to take over travel procurement and make immediate improvements, it is a decent overview of the trend to place travel management in the procurement organization and addresses issues such as spend visibility, SOX compliance, and the need for procurement to become more service-oriented. No registration is required for this whitepaper, so I recommend that you download it by going to http://thebeat.travel/, then hovering over “Downloads” and selecting “Procurement Convergence” from the menu.

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
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Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3

Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3 is an internationally-recognized business expert, legendary procurement thought leader, award-winning entrepreneur, and provocative blogger. Charles founded the Next Level Purchasing Association in 2000, oversaw its incredible growth, and successfully led the organization to its acquisition by the Certitrek Group in 2016. He continues to blog and provide advisory services for the NLPA on a part-time basis as he incubates his upcoming business innovations. Charles is also the co-author of the wildly popular, groundbreaking book, "The Procurement Game Plan: Winning Strategies & Techniques For Supply Management Professionals."

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