Aberdeen Group just released a new Supplier Enablement Benchmark Report. Free to registrants on Aberdeen's site, the report shows that procurement organizations are getting more serious about integrating their suppliers into procurement systems and portals. According the summary findings, "enterprises using Internet-based solutions, such as catalog management tools, content syndication hubs, supplier networks and marketplaces, and Web-based supplier portals will enable more suppliers, lower their costs and burdens, and improve spend management and cost performance."
One of the more insightful findings is that the percent of suppliers which are enabled within a typical e-procurement deployment has risen nearly 40% in less than 2 years (29% in 2006 vs. 17% in 2004). This is good news, but companies will need to get above 50% to maximize the benefits from their eProcurement investments. Another encouraging piece of data in the study centers on the types of information procurement organizations are now sharing with their suppliers either through point-to-point connections or via exchange- or network-based models. In this regard, Aberdeen reports that "companies are sharing more data with their suppliers, even more sensitive information such as product/sales activities, release schedules and manufacturing plans."