P200: Strategic Procurement

Collaboration paving the way: Procure-to-Pay optimization

Significant benefits await UC. In February, the UC Optimizing Procure-to-Pay (P2P) workgroup took an important step toward having those benefits realized.  A cross-section of business functions (disbursements, procurement and others) with representation from all campuses came together to share ideas and make recommendations as a follow-on to the Payment Efficiency Project (PEP). The PEP led by PayStream consultants was a UC funded study to assess the potential for efficiencies within accounts payable and following along the P2P continuum.

Optimizing P2P ultimately means improving the end-to-end process for the buying and payment of goods and services. Recognizing that this is a broad objective, the workgroup assessed suggestions from the PEP report, appraised efforts either implemented or planned by campuses, and came up with new ideas for longer-term implementation and quick wins. Over 100 ideas were captured for consideration. Evaluation criteria were:  improve efficiency, stimulate collaboration, and yield benefits (to meet the P200 challenge), mitigate risk, ease of adoption, and timeliness.  Based on these criteria, the workgroup prioritized four areas of focus to build collaboration between Procurement and Disbursements, better leverage technology, create efficiencies, and seize opportunities for standardization:

  1. Invoicing and supplier payment matrix
  2. Electronic invoicing
  3. Centralized repository for collecting UC supplier requirements and documentation
  4. Electronic payments

The importance of integrating P2P with other UC initiatives was also highlighted.

Faye McCullough, UC San Diego’s Executive Director of Integrated Procure-to-Pay Solutions (IPPS) is leading the Optimizing P2P effort on behalf of the UC System. The February workgroup was facilitated by Dawn McDevitt, an associate director in IPPS with certifications in change and project management. Faye, and other workgroup members, are documenting these recommendations, as well as a number of other related ideas and will shepherd them through an approval process intended to culminate in a systemwide effort that will optimize P2P.  This is the start of careful planning to ensure agreed outcomes can be achieved whether specific to a campus, through campus partnerships, and/or accomplished by system-wide initiatives.

More to come!

Faye McCullough, UCSD IPPS