Top Providers to Know and Watch, Conference Mania and More: May Highlights on Spend Matters

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There is perhaps not a busier month in the world of procurement than May. With the annual ISM conference and a host of other events taking place during the fifth month of the year, practitioners have come to expect a deluge of new developments. (Remember the sunsetting of IBM Emptoris last May, anyone?)

Here at Spend Matters, we hope to help practitioners make sense of it all, as well as shine a light on the key trends we see as the procurement space continues to evolve. With that in mind, here are some highlights from our most-read articles in May.

Top Companies to Know and Watch for 2018

Each year, we review the latest procurement technology and service offerings to help procurement organizations make the best vendor selection decisions possible. This effort culminates in May with our annual 50 Providers to Know and 50 Providers to Watch lists.

The 50 to Know and Watch lists are the result of intense debate, discussion and refinement among all of the Spend Matters analysts and reflect our unbiased, independent view of the providers procurement groups should have on their radar in 2018. In addition, this year we highlighted four providers that moved from the Watch list in previous iterations to Know in the latest edition. Check out our Q&As with each company below:

Finally, the 50 to Watch list still has one open slot. Vote here to decide what provider gets the final spot — Nomad Health, Efficio, Suplari or a write in. (Voting closes June 1.)

Conference Mania

Procurement road warriors know that spring brings a marathon of conferences. From industry gatherings to customer events, the Spend Matters team was on the ground to bring you the latest news and stories from the procurement frontier.

Headlining the month of May was ISM2018, which took place in Nashville, Tennessee. The event took a decidedly digital tone this year, with well-attended sessions on subjects ranging from blockchain’s connection to supply chain finance to how procurement can prepare to face the looming cybersecurity threat.

Beyond the increasing importance of the digital wave, however, ISM attendees had much to say about the direction of the procurement function. During two roundtable discussions, current and future industry leaders explored this through several related topics, including the increasing trend toward externalization and some of the top ways they’re preparing for risks both in the near term and on the horizon. Finally, our friends at MRA Global Sourcing provided a talent-focused take on how the procurement space is changing, particularly the need to not only attract top talent but retain “A” players as they continue to look for more challenging opportunities (and bigger paychecks).

May also brought additional event coverage from Coupa Inspire and Ivalua Now. At both events, the Spend Matters analysts were on the ground to cover the most recent provider developments and offer their take on where these two suite players are going during the rest of the year. See our dispatches from both events below:

Head-to-Head Bouts 

Lately at Spend Matters, we’ve been feeling sporty. Maybe the spring weather has something to do with it, but it’s also because earlier in May we started up our head-to-head series.

In these recurring columns, we use unfiltered SolutionMap data to pit two technology providers against each other by modular or suite area. The analysis also includes a commentary by Spend Matters Founder Jason Busch, who lets his own views frame the analysis in a “Final Word” section.

Check out the current entries in our head-to-head series below, and stay tuned for additional sweat-drenched matchups over the summer, including a showdown between two contract lifecycle management (CLM) heavyweights and a Tour de Spend Analysis in July:

Sourcing

E-Procurement

E-Invoicing and Supplier Networks

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