A Procurement Analytics Collaboration: What’s Coming Down the Pike

I had the good fortune of having an old friend and procurement data wonk/geek/junkie in the office this week: Capsaicin’s Ryder Daniels. I’ve known Ryder since the early days of Spend Matters and we’ve traced the evolution of analytics and data/knowledge management in the sector together since its commercial inception, even going so far as to build some dashboards together to model savings and related areas. Today, Ryder’s firm focuses on an area that focuses on what could perhaps be considered one of the biggest “Big Data” challenges within procurement: marketing analytics.

Working with Ryder, we crafted this recent Spend Matters PRO series focused on the power of applying Big Data to marketing spend (subscription required):

Cross-channel marketing analytics and true marketing spend optimization is a still in its infancy when you consider adoption. But some leaders are doing some fascinating stuff around hyper-local planning, competitive analysis, and econometric modeling - and can serve as a great lesson for the rest of us across the rest of our spend categories and supplier information.

In a five-part series starting next week on Spend Matters, Ryder and I will share a preview (including some video demonstrations) of what we think might be coming down the pike for procurement analytics in general, including some “back to the future” approaches to accessing and querying information. But we’ll begin with a recap of procurement analytics and adoption patterns we’ve observed in the past decade, including lessons learned about where companies get tripped up in gaining access to the type of spending, risk and related insights they need to make more informed decisions.

It’s important to realize that procurement analytics is much greater than just spend analysis, and requires an approach to building infrastructure and capability that is just as involved as tactical systems focused on sourcing, contract management, eProcurement and the like. Analytics involves a range of capabilities: supply risk management, compliance management, procurement/supply performance management and broader supply network analytics.

Procurement analytics is also tightly linked with master data and information management capability, including supplier information management, item/catalog management, cost/price management and data-centric supply market/category intelligence information – all of which should comprise an approach that places knowledge management at the center of the procurement operating organization of the future.

These are all topics that have not gotten enough attention in the past. Our intent is to change this. In this forthcoming coverage, we hope to spark dialogue and debate. If you want a “how to” guide to analytics and procurement information architecture, check out our PRO research on the topic:

But even if you’re not into subscribing to research that can help put ideas into practice around analytics and information architecture, we hope to at least inspire our regular readers to reconsider what they've been missing all these years with their current approaches to procurement analytics.

Stay tuned!

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