Launching and growing a new business comes with its challenges. Founders and leaders of new, emerging companies must develop and innovate their product strategy, hire the right talent, and earn the trust of their investors and customers. They must also be prepared to tackle new opportunities every day, amidst economic uncertainty. So where do sourcing, buying, and procurement practices fall on the list of priorities?
Buying processes and spend management is a top priority for many high-growth startups. Successful leaders know that investing in a smart, efficient purchasing process early on can accelerate growth for a young business. Here are some considerations to help you build a procurement plan that meets your needs today and adapts as your organization matures.
Meet employee needs and expectations
Business buying should be easy. 82% of business buyers want the same experience buying for work as when they’re buying for themselves at home1. Consider leveraging technology to:
These features go a long way to simplify the shopping experience, increase employee satisfaction, and drive productivity.
Gain spend visibility to empower employee purchases
Organizations without insight into their spending can’t recognize opportunities to streamline orders, meet quantity limits, or guide employee buying. Better understand your employees’ buying behavior using advanced analytics and dashboards. Uncovering a holistic view of spending patterns can help you establish policies and workflows that empower employees to make better buying decisions and get what they need quickly and easily.
Increase cash flow and optimize costs
Building a cash buffer is a high priority for many growing businesses. One way to improve your cash flow is by working with suppliers that provide extended payment options. This flexibility allows organizations to conserve cash, delay payments until the time is right, and avoid costly fees.
Cost optimization is another goal for many organizational leaders. It is important to recognize that cost reduction and cost optimization are not the same. A focus on spend reduction can inadvertently compromise product and service quality as well as morale. Instead, as you build and grow your procurement process, consider ways to optimize efficiencies by eliminating waste and automating manual processes through digital technologies. These capabilities allow you to save money and time on administrative processes and reinvest those resources in value-add initiatives that advance the organizational mission.
Consolidate a growing supplier base
High-growth startups may have a short list of go-to suppliers and vendors. However, as your business needs grow, so will that list. Take advantage of B2B e-commerce and online stores like Amazon Business that allow you to purchase from a wide selection of products and vendors. Accessing your suppliers in one place can mean significant time saved on managing relationships, issuing purchase orders, and reconciling invoices. And, when your team can find everything they need, all in one place, they can get back to what’s most critical for your organization.
Propelling growth with Amazon Business
By embracing a flexible purchasing system that can keep pace with your growing sourcing needs, procurement leaders at high-growth startups can build a stronger, more agile, and more productive team. Amazon Business equips procurement leaders with the tools and technology they need to simplify the buying process and accelerate sourcing. The user-friendly shopping experience and simple set-up of Amazon makes Amazon Business an easy choice for organizations at every stage growth.
At this year’s re:Shape virtual event, Adam Cohen, Senior Manager of Finance and Accounting from mobile infrastructure startup, Mason, shared how his team quickly addressed purchasing challenges at his organization.
Source: 1 Salesforce, “State of the Connected Customer,” Second Edition, 2018.
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