B2B Payments

Why Better Supplier Engagement Can Fuel Procurement

Positive relationships are essential for nearly every business, and the supply chain management process is no different. That is why Unum, an employee benefits and insurance provider is looking toimprove its procurement process by strengthening the relationships with suppliers.

“We are creating a procurement organization that is a trusted business partner to the business,” Unum’s vice president of global procurement, William Bagley, explained to Supply Management. “So not only looking at saving money but how we can bring the capabilities of the supply base into our organization so that we can provide a better product to our customers.”

According to Bagley, it’s not a 12-step program, or anything along those lines. Rather, Unum is trying to build trust in order to fuel innovation.

Bagley explained that Unum is introducing new training and capabilities for its procurement team, and will make use of business process outsourcing. For the latter issue, Bagley said he has put together a procurement governance board.

“It isn’t something that is magical,” Bagley said. “It’s about having the right relationship [based on trust], and working with fewer suppliers.”


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