Accelerating Supplier-Enabled Innovation

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Harnessing the true power of suppliers

Procurement occupies a privileged position in the business ecosystem, having excellent relationships with key internal stakeholders as well as thousands of external suppliers.

This unique viewpoint means that procurement can help to match supplier capabilities with business and customer needs; bringing new opportunities to their companies in a systemized, structured way.

Today, however, few procurement functions are focused in this way. The majority are transactional and prescriptive by nature, acting as inhibitors to, rather than orchestrators of, innovation.

Supplier-Enabled Innovation (SEI) changes all that, providing the framework with which procurement can harness the true power of suppliers, and take advantage of their expertise, intellectual property and R&D investments.

"There's nothing more significant on the horizon than Supplier-Enabled Innovation." John Paterson, former CPO, IBM.

About the SEIC

The Procurement Leaders Supplier-Enabled Innovation Center (SEIC) is a networking and content-driven community and knowledge platform for organizations wishing to accelerate their success in SEI.

It combines dedicated workshops and experiential learning environments, focused diagnostic tools and action prescriptions with rich case-study and intelligence libraries to provide a comprehensive center of excellence for SEI.

Membership delivers value in three core areas:

Content & Diagnostics 

Primary research, in-depth case studies and thought leadership all linked to the SEIC Methodology and Diagnostic Tool and updated regularly helps members to drive and benchmark their SEI efforts.

Community & Networking

A highly engaged, cross-functional community of procurement and R&D professionals is the beating heart of the SEIC, congregating regularly at our events and collaboration calls.

Accelerator Programs

Our two-day, intensive workshops accelerate SEI progress through unique content, peer collaboration techniques and the application of the SEIC Diagnostic & Methodology.

Membership to the SEIC is by annual subscription, with up to three participants invited to take part in our Accelerator Programs.

Why join the SEIC?

Our unique Methodology, developed in collaboration with our steering committee and charter members, provides a framework upon which SEI programs can be built. Focused around eight key modules, from strategy, governance & culture to innovation management and skills, our Methodology is the foundation for community engagement. As a result:

Using our Methodology and Diagnostic Tool members can plot a tangible roadmap for SEI and bring significant value to their organizations from the supply base in a systematic way

With a well-structured SEI program in place, procurement can significant value through improved pipelines, process improvements and efficiencies

Our cross-functional community brings together procurement with other key stakeholders to ensure SEI is embedded across the business and the supply base

Procurement is in a perfect position to help drive innovative solutions from the supply base, whether product, process or service

A Clear ROI

By facilitating in-depth collaboration and co-creation within the supply ecosystem, SEI can bring significant returns on investment:

Pipeline development

By working more collaboratively with suppliers, product pipelines are enhanced using combined knowledge and intellectual property

Reduced time to profit

One of the Holy Grails of business is to reduce time to market, and therefore, profit. SEI can help by streamlining processes

Cost savings & efficiencies

The best partners get access to the latest innovations, but they also get better prices while collaboration leads to greater efficiencies

Business-model innovation

Partnering with suppliers in new ways can lead to disruptive new business models and keep your organization ahead of the competition

Reduced cash outlays

Improved relationships can lead to other benefits, such as collaborative efforts with suppliers to re-engineer logistics and reduce inventories

Customer of choice

By working collaboratively with suppliers and sharing subsequent benefits, companies will attract more value from new and existing partners

Going Beyond Procurement

The Supplier-Enabled Innovation Center supports individuals, teams and entire organizations on their SEI journey:


Experienced sourcing, category management, SRM and other business stakeholders; or those with a dedicated responsibility for Supplier-Enabled Innovation


Dedicated SEI teams, procurement and supply chain functions, corporate innovation and cross-functional working groups tasked with exploring the opportunities of SEI


Those companies with a vested interest in driving and systemising sustainable innovation, new capabilities and competitive advantage from the supply base

Characteristics of an SEI Professional

Individuals who are given responsibility for driving an SEI program must be able to call on certain characteristics and skills:

  • Excellent consultative skills with the ability to engage with senior stakeholders from around the business
  • Be able to think creatively, in order to develop solutions that might not be immediately obvious or logical
  • Be tenacious, committed and determined – SEI falls between organizational structures and, as such, different stakeholders have different mandates and interests
  • Confident and willing to ask tough questions of stakeholders and able to influence without a formal mandate
  • Be of a relatively senior standing within the organization
  • Technically savvy, open minded, open to change and forward thinking


For more information on the SEIC or if you'd like to share you progress and success on your SEI efforts, please get in touch.

Prospero House
SEI Center

241 Borough High St.
London SE1 1GA
Phone: +44 (0) 207 819 1023

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