A LIVE Wrap: From the Mainstage … (Part 2)

Earlier today, I posted a blog entry highlighting some of internal facts and figures that Ariba disclosed on the mainstage at LIVE. In this post -- the last covering Ariba LIVE -- I'll talk about some of the customer adoption metrics that Ariba also brought to light on the main stage. And I'll apologize in advance for reciting what will seem like a voluminous number of facts and figures -- not only with little insight or analysis on my part, but also out of context given that's how they were presented. So if you have a comment or perspective, speak up!

To begin, one Ariba customer has centralized 95% of its spend to provide them "unique insights into opportunities" -- which one presumes are focused on sourcing strategy development and related activities because Ariba (like most of their peers) offers little integration between spend visibility and supplier performance / risk management at this point. In the same area, Another Ariba customer has "enriched over $24 billion in spend" from across 280 data sources in 50 countries.

Moving into the sourcing space, another Ariba customer, a "a large oil and gas company" manages 1800 sourcing projects per month in 64 different countries. In a related note, a "Fortune 500 chemical company" saved over $300 million on $2.4 billion in sourced spend in a 12 month period. On the contract management side of the product house, Ariba has "one large media company" which manages over 9000 contracts with over 500 users on the system. And another financial services customer uses Ariba contract management to "create and manage the approval process" for every new corporate contract (BTW: this citation does not sound overly remarkable to me -- that's the point of contract management software, isn't it?)

I personally think that Ariba's downstream numbers are where the provider really shines (on the spend visibility, sourcing and contract management front, I've heard similar or larger customer adoption numbers out of Emptoris over the years). But downstream, Ariba's customers really stand out from the crowd. In this regard, "several customers" process over 150,000 POs every quarter, some with over 200,000 users. As another downstream customer example, a large "telecommunications company" manages 95% of their invoices electronically and has cut PO / invoice error rates by 50%. And in the financial services industry, a leading provider has "cut invoice handling costs by 85% and reduced cycle time from 120 days to an average of 10 days".

Clearly, Ariba's top customers are achieving outstanding Spend Management results. But so are the best customers of other solution providers as well. Perhaps we can make this post -- and the comments that follow -- the start of an ongoing commentary of examples (regardless of vendor) that shows what types of results are possible with Spend Management.

Jason Busch

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