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Maximize your source-to-contract (S2C) ROI quickly

To get the most from your source-to-contract (S2C) platform, you need a well-planned and structured change management approach to guarantee high user adoption, fast time-to-market, and excellent ROI.

Many software solutions on the market for sourcing and procurement teams make far-fetched claims, and it’s easy to get mesmerized by all the bells and whistles, especially if your organization is looking to move from outdated manual legacy software to a cloud-based solution. Technology alone is not a silver bullet; the key to success is having a true partnership with your solution provider. The single most important strength of an S2C provider should be their ability to maximize tangible business results that optimize ROI.

The Typical Approach to S2C Success: Lopsided Partnerships

Defining S2C needs, selecting the right provider, implementing the tool, and training staff are time-consuming. But planning for what happens next – change management and driving adoption – is often overlooked. Providers, on their part, spend a good deal of time on marketing and winning new customers but tend to reactively, rather than proactively, support customers in their efforts to succeed following implementation. Thereby providing little in the way of structured support and guidance to make sure the S2C program is successful, the result is a lopsided partnership.

A Better Way: True Provider Partnerships

Pre-implementation work is essential. But the real work should begin post-implementation to make sure your team has the right resources, drive, knowledge, and a plan to fully utilize the technology to meet their objectives and get up to speed quickly.

A critical component in driving long-term success to maximize ROI from your S2C solution is a detailed plan and roadmap for beyond implementation. Planning and preparing the change management process and driving adoption among users and stakeholders is key to quickly generating ROI. This is where the provider should proactively and emphatically lead the way to success. After all, they have been involved in hundreds, if not thousands, of similar projects. Your team members are the procurement experts, and your solution provider should be the expert in driving S2C success.

The road to S2C program success is filled with challenges and barriers. One of the most significant barriers to adoption can be resistance among team members who are opposed to change, comfortable with manual processes and legacy systems, or executive stakeholders with an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mindset.

It is solely the provider’s responsibility, in partnership with procurement leaders, to help the teams and stakeholders understand the benefits of technology and digitization and to weed out potential fears that automation and technology will replace their jobs. This will help to break down barriers and melt away resistance.

Breaking Down Barriers to Adoption with Project-Based Learning

Your team needs to feel confident and empowered by the new S2C solution, regardless of their level of tech-savviness. Users should be split into groups based on technology competence levels and trained accordingly. This phased approach to S2C adoption with a Project-Based Learning Program will help your entire team get there quickly and comfortably.

This approach trains users on upcoming real-life sourcing events, supplier management projects, and contract creation/execution projects. This ‘learning-as-you-go’ approach means doing the work rather than receiving days’ worth of theoretical and fictional training. It also makes it easier to recall what was learned when it is actually needed.

A highly organized, proactive approach to defining KPIs and targets, creating project plans to drive adoption across stakeholders, and a roadmap to achieve the KPIs/targets will ensure that the ultimate ROI is realized.

Here is what a true S2C provider partnership with Project-Based Learning should look like:


  1. The customer creates a multi-seniority level S2C driving team that includes key stakeholders from the contract signatory to a selection of super users and key stakeholders. The customer team will work with the dedicated provider partner team to drive results. Crucially, the senior stakeholders will be responsible for one of the most critical aspects of the whole project – the top-down directive.
  2. The customer and provider partner to define the customer’s phase 1, 2, and 3 objectives and challenges within the S2C remit.
  3. The customer and provider partner to define KPIs and targets that reflect the top objectives based on broader procurement targets. This could also include simulations of a supply chain disruption or crisis, which may include identifying and understanding disruption to the supply chain, mitigating the disruption so that your organization can deliver its prime business functions, and quickly finding alternate suppliers to plug the supply chain gaps, protect your P&L against sharp price increases, and massively speed up contract creation-to-signature cycle time.
  4. The provider partner creates a 12-month success project plan containing all suggested training and methodologies to be deployed, with monthly/quarterly milestones and integrated customer feedback.
  5. The success project plan is rolled out by the customer S2C driving team and provider partner.
  6. The provider partner fully supports and proactively drives the S2C program to ensure monthly/quarterly KPIs/targets are hit.
  7. Monthly/quarterly performance update reports (including recommendations from the provider partner) are shared with the driving team to enhance performance against KPIs and targets if/where performance is falling behind.
  8. Bi-annual complete system health checks showing wide-ranging stats from every area of the system and provider partner recommendations for enhanced usage/performance at a highly detailed level.
  9. Annual onsite meeting with all key stakeholders to review the year and plan for the following year.
  10.  Repeat the cycle from steps 2-9.

Next Steps

Digitizing your S2C process does not have to be a complete overhaul, and it can be done in steps to help support internal buy-in and speed up time to implementation and, importantly, ROI. Finding a technology provider partner who understands your business and wants to help you achieve your goals will not only provide a substantial return on your investment. It will also create long-term, sustainable value for the organization.

How can Unit4 Contract Lifecycle Management by Scanmarket help your organization?

Are you looking for a provider you can partner with to grow your strategic sourcing program? Book a Free Demo now or click here to see our software suite and learn more about how we help our customers meet their objectives with ROI that generates long-term value.

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