SciQuest Product Planning: Contract Management and Spend Analysis

Continuing on with our rapid scan of SciQuest product innovation areas, the individual product teams have been hard at work. Contract management enhancements, for example, include significantly greater configurability and data/meta-data management, which translates into the ability to more easily deliver full lifecycle support (from negotiation to authoring to ongoing management/administration) for a wide range of contract types, including how this information is configured to display on a user’s environment.

The team is also bringing the Upside enterprise product into the SaaS world, a process that should be complete by the end of this year (a SaaS product is currently available, mind you, but the full migration of all capabilities is gradual). For those familiar with the Upside product suite, this should come as no surprise given its depth and complexity. Moreover, we still believe that larger global companies will still want to consider deploying the product behind the firewall given contract sensitivities as well as local jurisdictional requirements in different countries (although there are SaaS work-arounds to this).

The final cloud product will be full multitenant SaaS and will include the ability to store documents, workflow and other sensitive elements in a hosted (or local – or multiple local, for jurisdictional requirements) databases with all users sharing the same application codebase. This approach is designed around data portability and separation, including the ability to allow for migration from an on-premise to a cloud environment more easily.

While we’ll continue to cover the latest on SciQuest and contract management – including a number of advanced use cases the team is thinking about for the future, really pushing the limits of how we think about contract management in totality – we will next turn our attention SciQuest’s latest activity in the spend analysis area with Spend Radar. Analytics is among the most loosely coupled elements of SciQuests’s product planning integration within their broader solution portfolio (for good reason – analytics can be loosely coupled technically and still be integrated with a broader suite).

The short of the Spend Radar solution set story is that the team continues to push innovation hard, including new configurations that really blur the line between supplier performance management (including weekly quality, on-time performance and related ERP feeds), spend analytics, supply chain/inventory visibility, supply risk (far beyond basic D&B/BvD type enrichment) and related areas. One customer, FMC Technologies, presented an exceptional use case for more advanced spend analytics bridging the financial, procurement and supply chain gap. We’ll be sharing more about this adventurous implementation later.

The best way to look at Spend Radar within SciQuest is as a data cleansing/classification and analytics configurator. Yes, they can do all the basic type of spend analytics services and reporting (from AP to invoice to T&E data).  And they do have standard “in the box” product. But it’s really a powerful toolkit for modeling more advanced types of integrated data and drillable reporting that links procurement with other areas of the business, from tracking commodity volatility in contracts to considering the impact of overall supplier and spend activity based not just on division and coding, but using geospatial and other types of analysis and visual drill-downs. Moreover, the Spend Radar brain trust appears fully intact within SciQuest (all the old faces are there).

Stay tuned as our coverage from Next Level continues, including more product centric comparative analysis and recommendations on Spend Matters PRO

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