This blog has been written by Market Dojo’s CEO Alun Rafique, ahead of our upcoming webinar Mapping success: Taking digital transformation from concept to realization. Alun, Co-Founder of Market Dojo, started the business alongside Nick Drewe and Nic Martin. The team saw an opportunity in the procurement world to help buyers with negotiating (via reverse auctions), by creating an easy to use, on-demand platform. A McKinsey survey indicates that most companies aren’t making a move on creating and implementing a digital strategy despite acknowledging the importance of doing so.
The results from a Deloitte survey would seem to support their caution as those who have taken the leap and have fully implemented a digital strategy are “not satisfied with the results.”
Regardless of which of the two scenarios reflects the current status of your organization, the question that requires an answer is how you can move forward with a high degree of confidence that your digital strategy will achieve the desired outcome.
As one of the founders of Market Dojo, a service provider that specializes in transforming our clients’ procurement practice through an innovative digital platform, you might think that my immediate response would be “technology.” You would, of course, be correct. There is no doubt that the right technology will do incredible things for any organization.
However, and this is the practitioner in me speaking, technology alone is not enough. Besides the right technology, you need the right partners with whom to work. If this were not the case, then the survey results, such as the ones referenced above, would tell an entirely different story.
For procurement, by procurement
Although somewhat subtle, you probably caught the reference to my being a practitioner in the previous paragraph.
Before starting Market Dojo, I was on the end-user client side of the table. While having experience as a procurement professional isn’t unique for some service providers, a solution created for procurement professionals by procurement professionals is a great starting point. The reason is simple; when you have a procurement background, you don’t lead with technology, you leverage it. In other words, technology is a means to an end and not the end itself.
You can visit my LinkedIn profile to check out my procurement background to better understand my previous experience. My point is that having been a practitioner for so many years means that I can understand my client’s perspective because I share a similar background.
It is this alignment or “right fit,” which makes good technology great. That’s one of the reasons our tagline is “#eSourcing – More than just software.”
Origins of the right fit
In his article about his interview with Logitech’s David Latten, Jon Hansen referred David’s comment that he and his team had to demonstrate they could deliver “real value” to the enterprise as a whole. I can empathise with that.
He also wrote about David’s need to “implement a solution based on simplicity, efficiency and speed of execution.” Once again, and as someone who has walked a mile in David’s shoes, not only did I have empathy for his position, I also had the same sense of urgency to get the job done.
Our advantage and what we brought to the relationship was to deliver an eSourcing solution on a results first basis.
Why “results-first” matters
One of the obstacles to digital transformation or, for that matter, any technology-driven initiative is cost. But the cost to which I am referring is not what you think.
When I refer to cost, I am talking about the proportional increase in pressure to deliver results based on the size of the initial investment. Specifically, the more money that you pay upfront, the greater the expectations and the shorter the deliverable timeline. In cases such as these, the expected results and timeline for their realization become less and less in alignment as costs increase.
The downside of this is that the focus shifts from doing the job right to one of decision justification. This shift in focus is why good technology frequently fails to deliver – see Deloitte CPO survey results.
With a low-cost of entry, both David and our team could focus on the task at hand, which was to deliver results instead of having to justify an expense. When it comes to the digital transformation of your procurement practice, this makes all the difference in the world.
I invite you to join David, Jon Hansen and myself on February 6th, 2020, for the webinar Mapping success: Taking digital transformation from concept to realization. During the session, David will share with you how he was able to work with Market Dojo to digitally transform his strategic sourcing practice and how you can do the same.