So after all the years of striving, learning and fighting you’re finally living your best life! You’ve found your perfect partner, a common purpose, got the paperwork done after a quiet little ceremony and once the initial excitement has abated – together you are finally about to make the biggest purchases in this (or any other) relationship!
So why is this so difficult, why are cracks starting to show so soon? You bicker and fight and things just don’t feel right. After a while, you find yourself thinking about your choice of partner; the clarity of your common objectives; the alignment in your approaches; even how to be more transparent and rebuild trust!
Honestly, who would have thought that procuring an offshore substation and 250 km of high voltage subsea cable could be this painful?!
Joint Ventures (JV) are rather like a marriage (for the purposes of the blog!) in some ways and those JVs focused on developing major infrastructure can be especially testing. Most JV partners hope to learn from past relationships and their mistakes but when it comes to project procurement, those mistakes can be expensive and painful.
Why is there such a strain in JVs?
Project JVs are under a lot of pressure for a range of reasons:
- Transparency is essential – JVs are usually formed to spread the huge cost of building infrastructure – they have to show that spending is based on solid decision making and value.
- Compliance is a given – most JVs are formed by partners that prize legal compliance and reputation above most other factors – demonstrating compliance throughout the supply chain is a must.
- Big projects carry risk – procuring the right packages; equipment and services is not a trivial matter with thousands of exchanges, documents and clarifications
- Time is key – these teams have one purpose – to build infrastructure on time and on budget.
- Systems and processes – while many JV teams will be familiar with robust risk management infrastructure from their parent companies. These are often not present in project JVs and the schedule rarely gives a lot of scope to build out effective systems and processes to mitigate risks.
- Knowledge sharing and reporting – providing information is critical to transparency but also sharing the right information with the members of the new team is fundamental to the success of the venture – this can be very difficult without established processes.
Some procurement tips to keep the love alive
Considering all these pressures, I would like to share some project procurement tips for JV teams to ensure the relationship stays as strong as in those heady days at the beginning!
Collaboration must be at the heart of JV procurement – the team has to be able to come together and align through shared objectives and knowledge. Technical, legal, commercial and procurement need to work together both internally and externally to make the best decisions. Connecting different stakeholders and sharing information must be simple and transparent with the right controls in place to ensure that the right data is shared only with the right people.
Processes and tools need to be robust, flexible and agile to ensure they are implemented rapidly. Project JVs usually mean procurement of complex major packages, services and equipment. Tools need to support this complexity so that users do not default to using email with all the risks that it carries in terms of compliance and transparency.
Ensuring transparency in procurement operations – every document exchange, clarification and communication in relation to procurement needs to be auditable. Audit information needs to be available quickly and simply so it can be reported and shared within the team and stakeholders if required.
Automation must be used to drive efficiency so the team can spend time on what they are best at. To really deliver this, workflow needs to be adaptable and configurable to meet requirements of the task – a complex high risk tender needs a more detailed process, a simple RFP needs fewer steps. Technology has to work for the user, not vice versa and a rich user experience will deliver a high adoption rate, reaping rewards for the whole JV.
DeepStream delivers on the key needs of project JVs to keep the love alive!
We have a simple vision: delivering lean, agile, user friendly and best-in-class software catering for the specific needs of complex transactions and critical B2B data exchanges.
We’ve developed a collaborative platform for critical B2B data exchanges with user-defined automated workflows. It allows you to exchange business, tender and transact through a smooth and secure digital platform. It is highly user-friendly, transparent and efficient, with an audit trail downloadable at a click of a button. Best of all, it allows multiple buyers to collaborate on a tender, or buyers to unlock tendering visibility when JVs, intermediaries or brokers are used for tendering out to suppliers.
Booking a live demo is the best way to discover how our platform can enhance your future procurement collaborations.
We like to do things a little differently here at DeepStream, and lead with the product rather than the sales pitch so you can really get to know it. This means that we give you access to a live pilot account and run an end-to-end tender so you can see for yourself how easy and powerful the software is.