The Buy Side: How sales people can better navigate procurement

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Written by

Ryan Neu

Published on

September 6, 2019

August 4, 2022

Read Time


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Topic: How sales people can better navigate procurement

"This is Ryan Neu and this is The Buy Side where we provide quick hits to help sales people sell better and to help companies buy more efficiently. And today we're going to spend a couple of minutes talking about how sales people can navigate procurement more effectively. Now, we know a thing or two about this so at Vendr we help companies by software.

So we've interacted with hundreds and hundreds of salespeople in the buying process of hundreds of different software products. Now navigating procurement is oftentimes looked at as a burden that you hear sales people say now it's time for procurement. Like it's a bad thing but isn't it a good thing? Right? This means that you've actually gotten sign-off from the business champion who is vouching for your product or service which means you've done the hardest part of the sale, which is selling based on value. Now procurement is just about getting towards the finish line and most often at least in our opinion it's not really a value discussion, instead it's a discussion around the tactics of what needs to happen to physically sign.

In sales a lot of us try to avoid talking about bad things or problems, but when navigating procurement, it's critical to steer towards the problems steer towards the things that would prevent signature and when you do this, it's going to give you a problem-solving mentality which in return will actually put you on the side of the table of your counter-party, which is the procurement person. So think of the procurement processes a series of hurdles and those could be things like getting through security, legal redlining, commercial negotiations, routing for signature and it's critical to think of these hurdles in sequential order so don't spend all of your time and energy talking about the signing when you haven't even gotten through security. Instead go a couple layers deep and figure out what exactly has to happen with security and how can you help get sign off with your counter-party?

This mentality of problem solving is very effective when navigating procurement because it allows the two of you to work together versus bringing emotion into it, which oftentimes bridges you apart.

We'd love to hear below what have you encountered when navigating procurement? Share below and we will engage with all comments. Take care!"

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