Once you've focused on more standard supplier management use cases (e.g., diversity, on-boarding, AP-based initiatives, conflict minerals) of the type we explored in this analysis, you are now duly primed with information around terminology and concepts, as well as the potential with supplier management and modern vendor management solutions. We will offer a few more advanced use cases below:
Business process outsourcing – to avoid losing control over outsourcing relationships, an integrated solution can enable BPO partners to participate next to internal users to ensure effective performance management and prevents loss of data currency. The last point is an often-overlooked aspect of BPO relationships. A supplier management system can – and should – be part of any type of BPO vendor management effort.
Political relationships – advanced supplier management tools can be used to track federal, state, and local happenings, as well as those from other organized influentors such as labor unions, politicians and lobbying groups (not to mention internal pressure that is practically as political). A detailed and accurate picture of business activities, vendors, customers, community impact, etc., is often critical when maintaining or improving these relationships. The quality and completeness of the data can make or break business opportunities, avoid publicity disasters, and ideally provide early warning alerts.
Communicate policy, expectations and needs – use supplier management platforms to drive the right suppliers to you. By stating the right content and requirements up front, vendors know from the get-go what your needs, terms and other requirements are. This can significantly reduce contracting time and improve compliance levels over relationship lifecycles.
Spend Matters readers interested in learning more about advanced supplier management (and the basics as well!) can download the following analysis in our (free!) research library: Beyond One-Off Initiatives and a Virtual Vendor Master – Advanced Use Cases for Supplier Management.