As someone who has worked for many years in both finance and supply management, I have always found the relationship between the CPO and the CFO (and their departments) to be an intriguing one. In general, we see two departments that are often operating on the same page and towards the same ends, but speaking different languages and using different means to achieve them. The increasing awareness of procurement’s strategic potential, buoyed by a global recession that has placed the optimization of working capital and cost reductions ahead of many traditional corporate goals, has helped improve the relationship significantly in recent years. But there is still room for improvement, dramatic improvement in the case of most enterprises. CPOs are more likely to report to the CFO than any other executive, so the relationship is important. But, whether or not there is a direct reporting relationship, how these two leaders and their departments interact can be a significant benefit or burden to strategic operations.

On Thursday, I will be participating with a former CFO in a webinar (free registration) that will look at the CFO-CPO relationship in detail and suggest Best-in-Class strategies to help drive performance. Here’s the official description of the webinar:

Assessing the CFO’s View of Procurement

March 11 – 11:00 a.m. EST | 4:00 p.m. GMT | 1 hour | Find Your Time

Join Ariba and Aberdeen Group for this webinar to hear how and why the CFO’s view of the CPO and the procurement function has changed. Learn how to strategically align the two functions— leveraging process, organization, knowledge management, and performance-tracking—to become best-in-class.

What You’ll Learn:

Action items the CFO can easily implement for optimal performance
Correct standards and measurements CFOs should use to measure the performance of Procurement organizations
The Aberdeen Group’s steps to success for transforming your Procurement organization to become best-in-class
Andrew Bartolini, VP and Group Director, Global Supply Management Research, Aberdeen Group
Jim Frankola, Executive Vice President, Strategy, Ariba (and former CFO)

**All webinar registrants will receive a complimentary copy of The Aberdeen Group report, The CFO’s View of Procurement: Work in Progress.

The format of this webinar is entirely Q&A so it should be more conversational than most other webinars. I am really looking forward to an interactive give and take with a former CFO.

This free webinar is sponsored by Ariba.

EDITOR’S UPDATE March 16: If you missed it, the webinar has been archived. You can listen to the webinar by clicking here (free registration).

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