A new procurement paradigm at BDTX




Black Diamond Therapeutics (BDTX) uses genetic sequencing data to develop new cancer therapies. Research moves quickly, and BDTX needed a faster way to add emerging suppliers and centralize purchases across its research teams. BDTX chose Coupa, and wanted to ensure that the new solution would truly be adopted by users and integrated into the organization. BDTX needed an implementation partner with a broad range of services and a proven framework for success and transparency into the overall project’s requirements and returns.


Black Diamond Therapeutics needed to better manage purchases and suppliers while centralizing procurement across its research teams.




The Grant Thornton team quickly began working to understand, plan, and integrate the new solution. The solution required two Coupa modules, Procure to Invoice (P2I) and Supplier Information Management (SIM), to be integrated with the organization’s Oracle NetSuite ERP. The team mobilized by clarifying timelines, roles, responsibilities and data requests before moving into business process design, configuration, integration, user testing, change adoption, supplier enablement and support. “We gave them transparency over the implementation with a detailed view of what we need, what are the sticky points in the implementation, what are the areas that might typically slow things down,” Petricone said. He added that the team communicated “the full spread and full length of the timeline, and where to pay the most attention, so that we’re on track and make the best decisions. Grant Thornton Coupa and NetSuite developers also helped customize the integration bundle to meet BTDX needs.




In 14 weeks, the Grant Thornton team implemented the new solution coupled with a change management framework that moved BDTX to a new procurement paradigm with:

  • More than 100 users adopting the solution and terminating rogue spending behaviors
  • 45% shorter cycle time for procurement requests
  • 70% shorter cycle time for supplier onboarding, from 10 days to only 3
  • A procurement policy framework that comprehensively aligns procurement practices with the new solution
  • Training for power users to further drive adoption and adaptation of the system as needed in the future

“We really looked at things that go beyond technology,” Petricone said, explaining that the team produced “Procurement Policy & Practices” that integrate the solution into a procurement policy framework. Grant Thornton Transformation Advisory Senior Manager James DePalma added “It’s a functionally led technology offering — and most of our practitioners are procurement practitioners. So, being able to apply that expertise to the implementations is what’s been the key.” The team also established training so that the organization’s power users felt equipped to own the system processes and train others. “It’s really the idea of ‘teach them to fish rather than fish for them’,” Petricone said. “Then, they’re able to teach their teams as they grow, so it’s exponentially allowing them to scale.”


Black Diamond Therapeutics now has a fully integrated procurement process solution, with faster purchasing cycle times and supplier onboarding timelines.




Sound advice


Petricone and DePalma discussed how Grant Thornton helped clarify the organization’s procurement transformation.


“We were able to help them develop a very robust procurement policy, as well as having a focus on SOC compliance — not just Coupa, but really company-wide — how to govern their own procurement principles.”

Grant Thornton Manager, Transformation Advisory, Andrew Petricone


Listen in as Petricone and DePalma recount the thinking behind our approach:




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