The Definitive Guide to SaaS Procurement Negotiation

7 min
read time
November 10, 2022

When it comes to negotiating a better deal in procurement, there are a few key things you need to keep in mind. First and foremost, you need to understand the phases of negotiation process in procurement, which we will outline below. Secondly, you need to have a clear understanding of your goals and objectives for the negotiation. Finally, you need to be armed with some solid tips to help you get the best possible deal. 

In this blog post, we will provide some tips on how to get the best possible deal for your company. Let's dive in!

What is Procurement Negotiation?

Procurement negotiation is the act of discussing and agreeing on the terms of purchase between a buyer and a seller. It is an important part of the procurement process and can have a significant impact on the bottom line. There are a number of factors to consider when undertaking procurement negotiation, such as price, quality, delivery timescales, and payment terms.

The Phases of Negotiation Process in Procurement

Negotiation is a critical part of the procurement process. In order to get the best possible deals from suppliers, you need to be able to negotiate effectively. But what does that process look like? Let’s take a look at the five key phases of negotiation process in procurement: requirements gathering, preparation, opening offer, bargaining and concessions, and closure. 

5 Phases of the Negotiation Process in SaaS Procurement | CloudEagle

Phase 1: Requirements Gathering

The first phase of the negotiation process is information collection. You need to understand your own needs and requirements as well as those of your suppliers. 

Ask yourselves these questions:

  • What are your needs and requirements?
  • What are you looking for in a supplier? 
  • What kind of product or service do you need? 
  • What do your suppliers expect from you?

Once you have a clear understanding of your requirements, you can start developing procurement negotiation strategies.

Phase 2: Preparation

The second phase is all about preparation. Once you know what you're looking for, you need to prepare for the supplier negotiation itself. This means developing a strong understanding of your BATNA (best alternative to a negotiated agreement) and researching the supplier's business and objectives. You also need to identify your own objectives and priorities.

  • What are your goals for this negotiation? 
  • What are you willing to walk away from? 
  • What are your bottom line items? 

Answering these questions will help you develop a solid negotiating strategy.

Phase 3: Opening Offer

The third phase is when you make your opening offer. This is where you lay all your cards on the table and state your case for why the supplier should agree to your terms. It's important to remember that your opening offer should not be your final offer.

You should expect that the supplier will counter-offer and that there will be some back-and-forth before an agreement is reached. However, your opening offer should be based on your research and preparation from phases one and two, and it should be strong enough to give you some room for negotiated procurement.

Phase 4: Bargaining and Concessions

The fourth phase is when the actual bargaining takes place. This is where you'll try to reach an agreement with the supplier based on your respective objectives and bottom line items. Give-and-take is expected in this phase, so be prepared to make some concessions in order to reach an agreement that works for both parties. 

However, don't give away too much—remember, you want to walk away from this supplier negotiation feeling like you got the best possible deal.                    

Phase 5: Agreement and Terms Finalization     

The fifth and final phase is when you finalize the agreement and terms with the supplier. This includes putting everything in writing and ensuring that both parties understand and agree to all the contract terms before signing it. Once everything is finalized, all that's left is to implement the agreement and start reaping the benefits of your successful negotiation in procurement and supply!         

7 Tips for a Better Procurement Negotiation

7 Tips for a Better Procurement Negotiation | CloudEagle

When it comes to procurement negotiation, there are a number of factors that need to be considered in order to get the best deal possible. Listed below are some of the key tips and tricks to help you get a better deal when negotiating with vendors for SaaS purchases.

 1) Know Your Worth 

One of the most important aspects of procurement negotiation is being aware of your company's budget and what you are willing to spend on a particular purchase. It is also important to be aware of the perceived value of the product or service in question. 

If you are overpaying for something, then it is likely that you will be able to negotiate a better price. Similarly, if you are buying a product or service that is in high demand, then you may be able to secure a better deal by paying more. However, it is important to strike a balance between getting a good deal and paying fair market value. 

2) Do Your Research 

It is also important to do your research before entering into any kind of negotiation. This means knowing as much as possible about the products or services you are interested in, as well as the market conditions. 

By being well-informed, you will be in a much stronger position to secure a good deal. Furthermore, it will also be easier to spot any potential red flags that could indicate that you are about to overpay for something. 

3) Prepare for Negotiation

Once you have done your research and know what you want to achieve from the negotiated procurement process, it is time to start preparing for the actual discussion. This means coming up with a list of key points that you want to raise during the negotiation. It is also important to think about any potential objections that could be raised by the other party, and how you would like to respond to them. 

4) Be Flexible 

One of the most important things to remember when negotiating is that it is important to be flexible. This means being willing to compromise on certain points in order to reach an agreement that is satisfactory for both parties involved. If you are inflexible and refuse to budge on certain issues, then it is unlikely that any kind of agreement will be reached. 

5) Always Seek Professional Help 

Finally, it is important to seek professional help when undertaking any kind of procurement negotiation. This ensures that you have access to expert advice and guidance throughout the process. If necessary, consider outsourcing your procurement needs altogether so that you can be sure that you are getting the best possible deal for your company. 

Outsourcing your procurement function can be a smart move when negotiating SaaS deals. This is because procurement outsourcing firms have extensive experience in negotiating with vendors and they will also have access to market intelligence that you may not have. As such, they will be able to get you better deals and help you avoid any pitfalls during negotiations.

6) Don’t Be Afraid to Walk Away

If negotiations are not going your way, then don’t be afraid to walk away from the deal. This will send a strong message to the vendor that you are not willing to compromise on certain terms. Walking away from a deal can often be the best way to get what you want in the end.

7) Make Data-Driven Decisions 

When making decisions during procurement negotiations, it is important to base them on data rather than emotions. This means looking at things like the total cost of ownership (TCO), return on investment (ROI), and expected lifetime value (LTV). By making data-driven decisions, you will be able to make informed decisions that are in line with your business objectives.

Procurement Outsourcing

When it comes to software as a service (SaaS), there are many things to consider in the procurement process. One of the most important decisions is whether to outsource the procurement or handle it internally. There are pros and cons to both approaches, but ultimately outsourcing is the best option for most organizations. Here are three reasons why:

1. You'll Save Time and Money

When you outsource your software procurement to a SaaS provider, you'll save time and money. The provider will handle all of the negotiation and haggling with vendors on your behalf, so you won't have to waste time doing it yourself. And because they're experts at getting the best deals, you can be sure that you'll save money in the long run. 

2. You'll Get Better Quality Software 

When you outsource your software procurement, you'll also get better quality software. This is because the provider will only recommend software that meets your specific needs and requirements. They won't try to upsell you on features that you don't need or want, which means that you'll end up with a higher quality product overall. 

3. You'll Have More Time to Focus on Your Business 

When you outsource your software procurement, you'll also have more time to focus on running your business. This is because you won't have to spend time dealing with vendors or haggling over price. You can simply hand off the project to the provider and let them take care of everything for you. 

Take Control of Your SaaS Stack with Cloud Eagle

SaaS buyers like CloudEagle give you access to a team of experts who understand the SaaS market and can help you find the best vendors for your needs. As CloudEagle’s team also has experience in procurement contract negotiation, you can be sure you're getting the best possible terms. 

As expert buyers in the CloudEagle team leverage their buying power to get discounts from vendors, they often have access to pre-negotiated vendor discounts that individual buyers don't. If you're still not convinced, talk to a CloudEagle procurement expert to learn more about the advantages of negotiation in procurement.

Conclusion

Procurement negotiation is an important part of securing goods and services for your business at a fair price. By following the procurement negotiation strategies outlined above, you can improve your chances of getting a good deal on your next purchase. Remember to always do your research before entering into any kind of negotiation, and be prepared to compromise if necessary in order to reach an agreement that works for both parties involved. 

Finally, always seek professional help when embarking on any kind of procurement negotiation - it could save you time and money in the long run! Outsourcing your SaaS procurement process may not be right for every organization, but it's definitely the best option for most. Book a demo with CloudEagle to see how effortless SaaS purchasing negotiations can be. 

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