Brad Veech, Head of Technology Procurement at Discover Financial Services, tells us about the vital importance of expertly procuring software and highlights the hidden pitfalls therein

Technology has reconfigured our lives in every conceivable way, particularly in procurement. Business has seen logistical, operational and strategic transformation built upon an everchanging foundation of technological advances.

Accelerating Digital Procurement

For many in the space, not only has the function evolved into a digitally bolstered role, but the actual products sourced are shifting in nature too, as more and more Chief Procurement Officers (CPOs) and their teams are looking for the best deals within the digital realm. However, successfully sourcing technology is an art form in itself with the possibility of all sorts of hidden costs and fees that cost enterprises multi millions…

Brad Veech is a highly successful industry professional who has worked at some of the biggest enterprises on the planet. He specialises in sourcing technology solutions, smartly. Brad’s current position is Head of Technology Procurement at Discover, while also producing literature and delivering speeches. He discusses what details procurement specialists should pay close attention to when procuring technology. His book Software: The Silent Killer of Your Company’s Budget is a must-read for any working within this space…

“A lot of companies don’t have the resources to have technology procurement experts on staff,” Brad tells us. “I think as time goes on people and companies will realise that the technology portfolio and the spend in that portfolio is increasing so rapidly they have to find a way to manage it. Find a project that doesn’t have software in it. Everything has software embedded within it, so you’re going to have to have industry experts that understand the unique contracts and negotiation tactics of technology.” Indeed, using good procurement support organisations for help when you do not have the internal skillset or headcount to help create better long-term agreements for your company is a great option in today’s technology driven world.

Moving the Needle

According to Brad, every company needs help in getting procurement involved earlier on when sourcing technology and software. Procurement needs to become a trusted partner. “You become a trusted partner by asking great questions, by being curious,” Brad explains. “Procurement people need to understand what the needs are to make a successful project. What does that stakeholder need to be successful so the company moves forward with the proper tools? Ideally, procurement leaders need to know more than the internal stakeholder, which isn’t hard if we are intentional about learning.”

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