Breaking the chains of Platform Administration to focus on Program Optimization

April 26, 2017

Note: Richard Landerholm is the e-Procurement Manager for Woodward, Inc., a $2 Billion manufacturer of precision industrial parts and assemblies for aerospace, industrial and energy markets. Richard is one of the key people responsible for the recent outsourcing of Woodward’s internal service desk for their new procurement platform implementation. This decision was strategic for Woodward, and Richard explains his thoughts in this guest blog.

Keeping a procurement platform modern with the latest features and functions is the best way to ensure you’re getting the best return on investment. However, trying to keep up with new features and functions while maintaining your current platform may be quite challenging for any system administrator.

Finding the time to manage the current environment while learning/implementing new features and functions can be difficult. The daily decision about what to focus on usually comes down to priority. For me, managing health, functionality and user satisfaction in the current environment took priority. This would take up most of my time ensuring these are running at the expected levels to ensure continued system success.

But what about platform improvements? New features and functions can generate additional ROI while adding value to your platform. You may even have the ability to reduce current workload or increase revenue. The challenge here is finding the time to focus on learning what the new features/functions have to offer and analyzing what benefit your company may receive from implementing them.

Realizing that some of these new features may help reduce my daily workload, I knew I needed to do something to help me break the chains of platform administration to focus on program optimization. Craig Culver (Director of Indirect Sourcing) and I began to review options to better manage the daily workload. We quickly started looking for a company who could be a partner to Woodward and provide support for our Coupa help desk.

We selected The Shelby Group to become our partner. They had the experience and knowledge to manage our help desk support. I really want to emphasize the partnering piece of this relationship. This was an important aspect of successfully managing a help desk for Woodward. I worked hard to establish trust and reliability with our employees and suppliers. I did not want this to change by moving our help desk to a third party. Anyone can set up a help desk and provide canned responses to users by referencing a document or procedure. I was looking for a partner who would take the same interest in my users and suppliers that I had. I wanted this to be a solution and not just a Band-Aid. The Shelby Group has delivered on that aspect of our relationship through help desk support.

I now have time to evaluate new features and functions because The Shelby Group is managing the day to day help desk activities.

Consider partnering with an industry expert to gain increased efficiencies and greater insight to your help desk support.

Richard Landerholm
e-Procurement Manager Woodward, Inc.