Welcome back to another installment of Whitepaper Wednesday here on the Purchasing Certification Blog.

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In researching today’s installment, I learned something that I found odd: UPS has a supply chain consulting operation. Yep – the package delivery folks. I would imagine that it would be tough to build a good supply chain consulting brand when you’re best known for driving big brown trucks and carrying heavy packages, but time will tell.

Anyway, on the UPS Supply Chain Solutions Web page, I found several whitepapers. Frankly, most were not very good. But there was one entitled “Indirect Procurement Outsourcing – How, Why, and When” that I thought was pretty decent. So that is what I’ll cover today.

The whitepaper is quick to point out that not all procurement outsourcing providers are created equal. It says: “The procurement outsourcing marketplace is a confusing environment. The good news for companies interested in outsourcing their procurement processes is that – there are plenty of companies willing to take on the work. The bad news for companies is – there are so many companies with different skills and offerings in the marketplace that selecting the right provider is a real challenge.”

The whitepaper classifies procurement outsourcing providers into three categories:

  1. Transaction focused processors
  2. Category specialists
  3. Comprehensive service providers

The whitepaper lists several criteria on which an organization should evaluate procurement outsourcing providers:

  • Expertise
  • Technology
  • Services
  • Supplier network
  • Savings
  • References

The whitepaper ends with a couple of testimonials that tout a good experience with ICG Commerce. Because the only two testimonials focused on the same procurement outsourcing provider, one has to question the objectivity of UPS in this paper.

You can decide for yourself by accessing the whitepaper here.

If you’re interested in more reading on the topic of procurement outsourcing, you may want to check out this case study from the current issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive. If you’re a procurement outsourcing firm seeking to gain a competitive advantage, click here to learn about training for BPO’s.

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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