The challenges of indirect purchasing are less in the complexity but rather in the decentralized procurement and the multitude of items and services that is processed via Purchasing only in an insufficient or not centralized manner.

From experience we know that the purchase of indirect goods and services hides a large savings potential. Expenses in the indirect area usually play an only subordinate role with regard to the goal and the overall success of Purchasing – unfortunately. The expenses in the indirect area are often neglected. That’s a pity since an optimization has an immediately noticeable and short-term impact on the annual result.

The purchase processes in indirect purchasing are often managed by the special departments (e.g. marketing, logistics, facility management, IT). These departments determine the specification, decide beforehand and purchase in a largely independent manner – separately from Purchasing. The influence, the competency and the levers of Purchasing often remain absolutely unused.

Traditional undesirable developments are:

  • Unused pooling of goods, items and services
  • Lacking specification for items and services
  • Lacking resources and responsibility in Purchasing
  • Non-existing procurement processes and a high degree of manual work load
  • And the most traditional: Maverick buying

To avoid this development, the indirect purchasing, too, is to be focused. However, this issue is rather complex and needs, like the direct area, an efficient organizational development to improve the cooperation between Purchasing and specialist departments and to sustainably reduce the procurement costs.

Solution approaches are among others:

  • Anchoring the responsibility in Purchasing
  • Negotiating central master agreements with decentralized requests
  • Developing qualified tenderings with clear specifications
  • Using e-sourcing platforms
  • Digitizing the procurement

THESEN potential analysis

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Fee model by THESEN

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