E-invoicing programs and services can stand alone without connections into other systems and processes. But they can also serve as a magnifier and direct enabler for broader accounts payable (A/P) automation, purchase-to-pay (P2P), e-procurement, supplier and third-party management and trade financing programs. In considering how e-invoicing programs can augment or combine with other initiatives, Spend Matters recommends companies consider these 5 factors.more ▸
Roughly a decade ago, a handful of technology vendors did a great disservice to the vocabulary of procurement by offering targeted extensions to early sourcing suites that enabled a view of category/commodity activity that extended beyond one-off sourcing events and labeling these modules and capabilities as “category management.” Pierre Mitchell, Spend Matters Chief Research Officer, sets out to correct this wrong in the new e-book Supercharging Category Management: Free Yourself from Siloed Sourcing to Unlock Breakthrough Value.more ▸
As a follow-up to the first installment in this series highlighting future supplier network-based applications made possible through platform-as-a-service (PaaS) architectures and business models, this second post shares additional business application-type apps that future networks might deliver, including network-based contract lifecycle management capabilities, virtualized environment health safety and safety health environment management, project, portfolio and initiative management solutions and more.more ▸
Vroozi is one of our 50 Providers to Watch. We will be highlighting 100 companies (50 to Know, 50 to Watch) from our 2015 Spend Matters Almanac over the span of 100 days. Practitioners are encouraged to browse the categories listed in our Almanac to find the provider that best fits their needs.
Vroozi is an e-procurement provider making a growing name for itself among a small community of purchase-to-pay (P2P) process owners that value features such as mobile-first buying.
Trade financing is a broad-based term we can use to encompass a range of receivables financing and payables financing techniques. The difference between the 2 types is relatively simple: Vendors are in control with receivables financing program, and payables financing programs are buyer-led. There are a range of common areas of trade financing programs today outside of global trade-centric programs and products. These include: supply chain financing (i.e., an uncommitted credit facility, typically with companies at or near an investment-grade credit rating), dynamic discounting, reverse auctions and auction marketplaces, buyer-led invoice finance, p-cards, seller auctions, factoring and invoice finance. For further information and definitions of these programs, download the Spend Matters Perspective: Understanding How E-Invoicing Fits.more ▸
Building on my earlier post introducing supplier networks and platform-as-a-service (PaaS), which was inspired by some of the thinking in Accenture’s paper, Procurement’s Next Frontier – The Future Will Give Rise to an Organization of One, when considering supplier networks of tomorrow, I can think of dozens of future network-based applications that will supplement, augment or replace existing procurement and supplier tech applications.
Here are 6 ideas for what’s possible with future PaaS-driven network applications.
One of the fastest growing areas of the procurement and accounts payable (A/P) technology automation market is a sub-sector that many describe as supplier or third-party management. As with the other areas we have explored, supplier management is an area that has material overlap with e-invoicing. Initiatives for this technology can support the capture and maintenance of a range of supplier management data.
However, e-invoicing is not a substitute for broader supplier management programs outside of A/P-specific, vendor file-centered programs. Separate programs, which require their own workflow and systems, may include programs centered on several related factors.
This article is based on content from the Spend Matters Perspective: Understanding How E-Invoicing Fits. Authored by Spend Matters Founder and Managing Director Jason Busch, with input and guidance from Trade Financing Matters’ David Gustin, it provides a foundation for organizations considering or already putting in place an electronic invoicing (e-invoicing) or purchase-to-pay (P2P) program.
Separate from supplier networks, e-procurement and purchase-to-pay (P2P) systems enable a range of hard dollar cost reduction benefits by reducing off-contract purchases, lowering purchase volume in general, improving operating efficiency, increasing PO throughput per full-time equivalent and bringing greater spend under management and lower contract rates.
These systems do this by supporting a range of capabilities, including supplier onboarding, catalog management, supplier portal, workflow/process management, requisitioning, approval/status, order management/visibility, inventory/asset management and supplier connectivity. The overlap between e-invoicing solutions and supplier network and P2P capabilities can be significant, especially in the areas of supplier onboarding, connectivity and portal capabilities. Given this, it can be important for procurement and A/P organizations to decide what capabilities of which solution area they want to leverage in case of overlap.
While the terms e-signature and digital signature are often used interchangeably, they are not the same. Every digital signature is electronic, but not every electronic signature is digital. This may sound a bit confusing, but it's not with proper definitions. This 3-part Spend Matters PRO research series provides a foundation for procurement and supply chain practitioners to understand the benefits that digital signatures can bring to contracting and contract management as well as interactions with internal stakeholders, suppliers and partners. This first part provides definitions, a general background on the topic and the benefits and drawbacks of these tools.more ▸
In our past lives designing, advising and implementing e-invoicing programs with clients, the Spend Matters team has found that far too many people inside procurement and finance organizations are confused about what supplier networks provide and what purchase-to-pay (P2P) and e-invoicing solutions deliver. For example, in many cases supplier networks incorporate e-invoicing capabilities within them; in other cases they incorporate some but not all capabilities.
To understand how e-invoicing programs fit with supplier networks, we should first explore what supplier networks are. Here are a few key points to illustrate how e-invoicing and supplier network capabilities can overlap.
I’m glad Accenture put supplier networks at the core of its future vision for technology in its recent white paper: Procurement’s Next Frontier – The Future Will Give Rise to an Organization of One. But the supplier networks of tomorrow will look very different than those that are most common today. Tradeshift, which is pitching a future network vision at the core, is perhaps the first active participant in this space today to leverage some of the early thinking and network capability in practice with platform-as-a-service (PaaS) approach.
PaaS is critical to understand how we’ll build and deploy connectivity hubs between buyers and suppliers at all tiers of the supply chain, as well as applications that support communication. But what is PaaS in the context of a network? As I’ve noted previously, future business networks will be supported by cloud computing models that include PaaS, an approach which will become increasingly productized and prevalent starting this year.
The Supplier Network of Tomorrow: Accenture and Spend Matters on the Future of Procurement Technology
What will the future of category management look like? Accenture has a strong opinion on the topic, and shares it in their recently published brief, Procurement’s Next Frontier – The Future Will Give Rise to an Organization of One, when introducing the concept of the “virtual category room.”
The notion of extending category management into a digital age is a complex one, especially considering many organizations are still barely crawling in building out category management teams outside of only a few top areas of spend. Yet the technology to support a new type of category management thinking and capability is not that far away. In fact, much of it is already here – it just needs piecing together.