Author Archives: Thomas Kase

Foundational Procurement KPIs Every CPO, Supply Manager and Buyer Needs To Know

- September 1, 2015 2:47 AM | Categories: Analysis, Best Practice, Procurement Strategy & Planning

Analyzing data This research brief is intended as an aspirational piece for more transactional-focused procurement team members who are aiming to add value to procurement and the business beyond mere efficiency improvements and price reduction efforts. It is our hope that this series will leave you with a laundry list of prioritized ideas and open your mind to the qualitative side of the business – and the ways in which you can begin to measure procurement contribution and key performance indicators (KPIs) to quantify the return of the various activities you’re up to. n the first installment of our introduction to KPIs and related considerations, we will examine why KPIs matter and how to use them and discuss basic procurement metrics, the role of innovation in setting measurement variables and how certain KPI approaches can mislead.

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Spend Matters 50/50: Browz – A Provider to Watch in 2015

- August 27, 2015 4:00 PM | Categories: Featured, Solution Providers

Browz 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.

Salt Lake City-based Browz addresses corporate supplier management needs, particularly in the contractor qualification and policy compliance areas. The solution is well worth looking at for any company needing contractor onsite readiness and workforce compliance assessments.

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Contract Lifecycle Management 101: Part 7 The Extended Contract Management Platform

male hand point on touch screen interface We continue our Spend Matters Plus series on contract lifecycle management (CLM) today with Part 7. So far, we have covered a lot of ground, explaining what CLM is (a decidedly unsexy acronym that, when properly implemented, can generate quite attractive results on its own, and even more when integrated into broader buy-side and enterprise-wide processes), discussed the CLM framework and talked about which solutions are required to support the full CLM process from an end-to-end procurement perspective.We have also covered what we believe to be “must-have” capabilities and “should-have” features of any CLM solution. Here we conclude our in-depth review of contract management solutions with a discussion of supporting “nice-to-have” capabilities that, while not present in all or even most solutions, can greatly increase the power, usefulness and even the value of such a solution to your organization.

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Spend Matters 50/50: LiveSource (MFG.com) – A Provider to Watch in 2015

- August 3, 2015 4:20 PM | Categories: Featured, Solution Providers

LiveSource (MFG.com) 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. As the name of the parent company MFG.com suggests, this Atlanta-based company has strong roots in manufacturing. The company has gone from enabling pilot and low-volume runs of custom parts by matching suppliers with buyers to delivering a highly capable sourcing solution – LiveSource – as well as a supplier discovery via the network of qualified manufacturing firms/suppliers that the company has built over the years.

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What Makes a CLM Tool Special These Days?

- August 3, 2015 2:18 AM | Categories: Contract Management, Technology

big data What should you look for if you want to drive a more mature contract lifecycle management (CLM) approach – one that takes you beyond just getting all your contracts in one place? If we look at the CLM providers in the market over the years, several companies have been either acquired by or merged with firms originating from either sourcing or e-procurement in the pursuit of a suite offering, and these solutions are now being integrated into the broader offering. Among the remaining, or independent, providers in the space are companies that deliver decent contract repository functionality, which is to say they can take your executed documents and push them into the CLM tool, and they can track numerous data points well, and most CLM providers also do a good job of negotiating contracts. Isn’t that good enough? What else might there be to CLM? What can we do to take CLM to the proverbial next level? This Spend Matters PRO research brief aims to answer those questions and points out what features and tools ideal CLM solutions should have.

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Spend Matters 50/50: HICX Solutions – A Provider to Watch in 2015

- July 31, 2015 3:04 PM | Categories: Featured, Solution Providers

HICX Solutions 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. Since this British company was founded in 2004, it has expanded into a relatively global presence, with offices in London, Chicago and Dubai. It is by no means a large firm but is active in most verticals, with clients that are at the top of the list in their respective industries – whether in pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, financials or in consulting services, to mention a few.

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Contract Lifecycle Management 101: Part 6 – The Standard Contract Management Platform

Man looking at tablet Today we continue our Plus series on contract lifecycle management, an uninspired acronym that sometimes encapsulates, sometimes complements, the source-to-settle or source-to-pay process, which when properly implemented can generate quite attractive results. Today, we discuss the “should-have” features of a contract management platform. While not absolutely required, usability and performance will be significantly affected by the absence of any of these features, and most industry leading contract management solutions will support the majority of these capabilities to some extent. Of course, practitioner priorities will always determine “must-have” versus “should-have” weightings, but we simply break it out for convenience based on how we see organizations prioritize and sequence solution functionality selection and implementation. For most organizations, it’s okay if a few features here are missing, but if too many of these features are missing, then the organization should consider very carefully whether such a contract management solution is right for it, unless the capability is present in another platform currently in use by supply management or the solution is essentially free. In this post, we highlight our list of should-have capabilities.

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Spend Matters 50/50: Hiperos – A Provider to Know in 2015

- July 23, 2015 2:51 PM | Categories: Featured, Solution Providers

Hiperos is one of our 50 Providers to Know. We will be highlighting all 100 companies (50 to Know, 50 to Watch) in 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. Massachusetts-originated Hiperos has made a name for itself in the supplier management field – first through its supplier performance management (SPM) solutions and later with information management more broadly – until recently creating the label third party management (3PM) and focusing primarily on risk management across all external parties that a company engages with.

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Airbnb Revamps Business Travel Program

plane From a luxury penthouse in Tokyo to a modern loft in Amsterdam – bike included – the number of places for business travelers to stay during corporate trips continues to grow. And, Airbnb is making it easier for corporate travelers to avoid stuffy hotel rooms and opt for alternative spaces like these while traveling for work. This week, the hospitality company announced the global expansion of its Business Travel program, adding a number of tools to the suite to increase visibility into employees' travel plans and spending. Since Airbnb’s Business Travel program launched in July 2014, it has seen 700% growth and now has more than 250 companies as customers, including big names like Google and Facebook. Currently about 10% of all rentals on Airbnb are used by business customers. Other data show business travelers enjoy Airbnb rentals more than hotel rooms and tend to stay longer in the rentals compared with hotels. Read on to find out what we think makes Airbnb so attractive to business travelers.

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Coupa Buys TripScanner – Extending Open Procurement Model To Travel

- July 23, 2015 6:12 AM | Categories: Industry News, M&A, Solution Providers, Technology

airport On July 20, the iconoclastic solutions provider Coupa announced it is acquiring TripScanner for an undisclosed amount. Like Coupa, TripScanner is built on an open network principle, except it is focused on business travel. Owing to its small size, TripScanner has not had any prior coverage on Spend Matters. But from what I have read about the company, its business concept appears similar to that of the travel portion of industry-leading travel and expense management provider Concur. Now part of SAP’s cloud portfolio, Concur’s approach lets travelers – in a user-friendly fashion – address their travel needs first and sort out policy consequences afterward. It’s a “spend-visibility-above-all” approach that aligns well with Coupa’s procure-to-pay (P2P) philosophy. Read on to find out how else TripScanner will bring value the Coupa's suite.

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Contract Lifecycle Management 101: Part 5 – The Core CM Solution

PaaS Today we continue our multi-part Plus series on contract lifecycle management (CLM), an uninspired acronym that sometimes encapsulates, sometimes complements, the source-to-settle (S2S) or source-to-Pay (S2P) process, which when properly implemented can generate quite attractive results. So far, we have introduced CLM in depth, defined the “CLM wheel” and reviewed the solution space to try and understand which solutions were typically required to support the full CLM process from an end-to-end procurement perspective, as no current solution supports the full buy-side process, in our view. We also followed this solution space review with a detailed review of the core solutions that were historically used to implement a full end-to-end solution, when strategically sourcing a high-value category. Now that we understand where traditional procurement solutions have been used with respect to full CLM and a number of the capabilities a true CLM platform is required to possess, we can discuss the core must-have level 1 requirements. In this post, we point out these must-have capabilities that every contract management platform needs to bring at least some value to your organization and where they fit on the CLM wheel.

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Contract Lifecycle Management 101: Part 4 – The Traditional Solutions

Traditional tools So far in our contract lifecycle management (CLM) series, we have discussed how the process can generate truly exceptional results when implemented correctly, and we have introduced a “wheel” framework that defined the processes and requirements for a core platform needed to support the end-to-end contract lifecycle in a modern supply management organization. In our last post, we provided a review of the solution space in an effort to understand what types of solutions were historically required in support of the CLM process. This understanding is important because no current solution supports the full CLM process well – as defined in our framework – on the buy-side and within a broader enterprise context. In this post, we will map each of the relevant components included in core buy-side technologies to the CLM framework because it helps one understand not only how these solutions support CLM, but how a specific CLM tool often needs to hook into this technology.

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