Author Archives: Andrew Karpie

The 2018 Beeline Conference: What Did We Learn?


The 2018 Beeline Conference, which officially wrapped up Wednesday, may in retrospect be a milestone event for the company. Not only was the conference well attended, well organized, informative and analyst friendly in terms of access and transparency, it also provided visibility into a company that has weathered a near-perfect storm in 2017 and is now unfurling its sails, looking toward the horizon. Realistically, on the voyage ahead, there will be both smooth sailing and rough seas — and as any seasoned mariner knows, that’s just how it is.

What’s New on the Beeline Technology Horizon: BeelineOne

Beeline Senior Vice President of Strategy Colleen Tiner made two important product announcements at the 2018 Beeline Conference Tuesday, providing a clearer technology roadmap for the company following its merger with IQNavigator. The first announcement concerned the completion of Horizon, Beeline’s name for its new underlying microservices platform. The second covered the development of BeelineOne, a user-facing product that delivers a common set of capabilities from both Beeline and IQN’s platforms.

To learn more about Horizon and BeelineOne, we spoke with the Beeline engineering team to understand what is complete, what is available and what is in the works.

2018 Beeline Conference: CEO Doug Leeby Talks Integration Hurdles, What Lies Ahead

Doug Leeby kicked off the 2018 Beeline Conference Tuesday with a talk on how Beeline has done over the past year and where it is headed. Given our interest in Beeline’s progress post-merger with IQNavigator, Leeby’s talk was very helpful. Compared with past years, Leeby’s keynote was notably more serious, focused on the here and now rather than technology and innovation. Specifically, Leeby emphasized Beeline’s increased “customer focus” — no doubt of critical importance given the typical challenges that come with integrating two companies.

The 2018 Beeline Conference: What Lies Ahead in a Changing World of Work

The 2018 Beeline Conference kicks off Monday in Amelia Island, Florida, the company’s second annual event since its merger with IQNavigator in December 2016. The conference will provide a good opportunity to review Beeline’s technology and product strategies, to be sure, but we at Spend Matters are also interested in the broader picture. In particular, we are eager to gauge Beeline’s progress as it evolves from simply a vendor management system (VMS) to something much bigger. 

What You Don’t Know Can’t Help You: Why Crowdsourcing Is Alive and Growing

Crowdsourcing is obscure concept for many, but one that is also widely in use. Large organizations ranging from Coca-Cola and Starbucks to AstraZeneca and NASA are increasingly experimenting with the approach, finding solutions for everything from sweetener development to answers to citizen science projects. And they’re not the only ones. In fact, there is considerable evidence that even midsize organizations are using and benefiting from crowdsourcing, too. To bring contingent workforce and services category managers and sourcing practitioners up to speed on these developments, we recently published “Crowdsourcing: New Trends and Developments” (Part 1 and Part 2).

Crowdsourcing: New Trends and Developments (Part 2)


In Part 1 of this two-part series, we provided an overview of crowdsourcing, defining what it is and how it is different from online freelancer marketplaces. We not only provided examples of different crowdsourcing platform providers (of which there are many) but also provided illustrations of real crowdsourcing in action.

Today in Part 2 of this series, we cover the emergence of practices and functions to effectively manage crowdsourcing across organizations and some of the segments where crowdsourcing has grown both on the demand (buyer organizations) and supply (platform providers) side. We also look at how the space is evolving and provide some highlights and suggestions for practitioners.

Crowdsourcing: New Trends and Developments (Part 1)

Back in mid-2015, we published a brief on crowdsourcing, “Clarifying Crowdsourcing: Contingent and Services Procurement Examples, Definition and Analysis,” to provide procurement professionals with a clearer understanding of this valuable, innovative tool kit for business problem solving. We’re not sure of how many practitioners took note at the time or, if they did, what they might have done about it. In any case, after a three-year hiatus, we’re back to review recent trends and developments.

Crowdsourcing, properly speaking, is still neither highly visible nor well understood, except for by the managers that use it. Yet, in some ways, it is also becoming a mainstream sourcing practice. Its use within large enterprises continues to grow, and the range of real, applied solutions crowdsourcing provides is expanding. And while crowdsourcing becomes a new normal, what it is and how enterprises are using it also continue to change.

This two-part Spend Matters Plus series explores what forms crowdsourcing is taking in 2018 and how this approach could continue to evolve. Part 1 provides a definition of crowdsourcing (and what it is not), as well as examples of how companies are currently using crowdsourcing platforms. Part 2 looks at how procurement functions are managing the use of crowdsourcing within their organizations and potential new ways in which they could soon be using the technology.

Randstad Sourceright Extends Its Innovation Streak with Talent Velocity: How’s That?

Randstad Sourceright, the global staffing and workforce solution of Randstad Holdings, recently announced its launch of Talent Velocity, an innovative, internal talent acquisition, candidate engagement and client relationship/collaboration platform. Over the next several months, the solution will be completely rolled out worldwide across the Sourceright RPO and later, to a lesser extent, within the MSP. While noteworthy in and of itself, Travel Velocity is only the latest of a number of innovative steps Sourceright has taken in the past few years. Moreover, there is also an important backstory in which Sourceright US seems to have become a key focal point for the execution of a broader Randstad innovation strategy.

The Contingent Workforce and Services (CW/S) Insider’s Hot List: April 2018

Welcome to the third edition of “The Contingent Workforce and Services Insider’s Hot List,” a Spend Matters monthly feature available to Plus and PRO subscribers. In the depths of the evolving and expanding contingent workforce and services (CW/S) space, innovations and emerging practices may be brewing but escape observation. To shed some light, at the top of every month, we select, summarize and provide some brief commentary on noteworthy developments that have recently appeared on our radar. In March we saw a warming trend, with a steady stream of steamy new developments. These ranged from those in the established core of the CW/S space to those on the bleeding edge. In this edition of the Hot List, we’ll cover the whole spectrum.

Enterprises and their Freelancers: What Does Upwork’s Recent Study Tell Us?


In recent years, various studies have indicated that freelancing is on the rise. At the same time, little is understood about how and to what extent enterprises utilize such independent contract workforce. In this article, we rely on data from Upwork’s recent study, “Future Workforce Report: Hiring Manager Insights on Flexible and Remote Work, Trends,” to glean a number of insights into the enterprise use of freelancers.

Freelancer Limited Enters the Enterprise Neighborhood: Who’s the New Kid on the Block? (Part 2)

In this two-part series, we highlight contingent workforce industry trends, discuss Freelancer Limited and its new enterprise offering, and offer our own Spend Matters commentary on this provider’s development. In Part 1, we focused on overarching trends, Freelancer (the company) and Freelancer Enterprise (the solution). Today in Part 2, we discuss enterprise demand for Freelancer Enterprise, Freelancer’s experience with procurement and the state of enterprise solutions for sourcing online freelancers, along with suggestions for procurement.

Freelancer Limited Enters the Enterprise Neighborhood: Who’s the New Kid on the Block? (Part 1)

Lystable, a part of publicly-traded Freelancer Limited (FLN.ASX), is one of the two largest online freelancer marketplaces in the world (we’ll leave it to Freelancer and Upwork to duke that out). Spend Matters has covered the company and its online marketplace ( over the past several years. Most recently, we called attention on its December announcement of “Freelancer Enterprise,” described by CEO Matt Barrie as providing “large organizations with a platform that enables transparency, control, talent management and compliance, together with the ability to scale adoption across the organization.” In this two-part series, we highlight industry trends, discuss the company and its new enterprise offering, and provide our own Spend Matters commentary.