At DPW 2023 in Amsterdam, Michael DeWitt, Vice President of Indirect Spend Management and Center of Excellence for Walmart International, shared the global retailer’s vision on the future of procurement. In Michael’s keynote, he emphasizes the transformative impact of AI implementation and how Cirtuo drives tangible business impact for Walmart.
Breno Jung of Corning, Andrew Speck, and Ganga Siebertz of Cirtuo, next to Mark Webb of Future Purchasing and Travis Johnson of Walmart highlighted the difficulties of defining what ROI means for Category Management and how to measure it. With Return On Investment being a financial indicator that is required at the time of investment, telling a complete and convincing story becomes especially difficult.
Marcel Stalder, CEO of ChainIQ, picked up on the current state of category management in his session “The importance of Category Strategies in today’s transforming environment.” He made a case for offering ‘Category Strategies as a Service’ through empowering humans with technology, namely ChainIQ with Cirtuo. Attracting talent, fluctuations in resources, retaining knowledge, and limited experience in non-core categories might result in missed opportunities, especially considering the frequency of market-moving events.
Mark Webb, CEO of Future Purchasing, provided a glimpse into the current state of adopting Category Management in his session on “Category Management in action: a study of implementation and impact across industry”. Based on a 2022 survey conducted globally, he shared some statistics on the overall adoption and maturity of category management that were hard to digest. 75% of respondents were classified as Starters and only 5% as Leaders.
Travis Johnson, Sr. Director, ISM Procurement & Technology Enablement at Walmart International reflected on Walmart’s partnership with Cirtuo. He provided examples of his colleague reducing the time required for creating category strategies from 60 hours down to 30 hours and eventually 8-12 hours by using Cirtuo, which led to a discussion around the ROI of Category Management and the cost of doing nothing.
Drasko Jelavic, CEO of Cirtuo, drilled even deeper into the misalignment of Procurement with the business as the root cause for not getting the proverbial seat at the table. In his keynote “The digital revolution in Category Management: building strategies that elevate procurement to the C-level”, he laid out his framework for embedding business objectives throughout Procurement.
Jim Abbot of AstraZeneca, Josip Stopic of Xellia, and Lisa Harris of Baringa next to Stephane Morel (Ex Novartis) share perspectives on “How to drive acceptance and adoption of Category Management throughout the organization”, Procurement working in isolation and focusing on itself rather than business objectives was the key theme and issue of the morning.
Stephane Morel brought full attention to the key factors for successful category management programs with this keynote. He hits a nerve with the audience when he proclaimed that understanding the needs and requirements of internal stakeholders and reflecting them in category strategies is a priority that will ultimately enhance stakeholder alignment and collaboration.
The panel including Dr. Epstein, Drasko Jelavic, CEO of Cirtuo, Sam Achampong – GM CIPS Middle East, Mark Webb – CEO of Future of Purchasing, and Stephane Morel – ex-Head of S2P Processes, Novartis, and Danijel Banek, Executive Director of Central Procurement at Atlantic Grupa discussed the impact of digitalization on the profession and the evolving requirements towards practitioners.