Author Archives: Tom Finn



About Tom Finn

Tom was the editor of Healthcare Matters and is now a contributing author to Spend Matters. He is a serial entrepreneur and reluctant expert in the myriad applications of optimization to strategic sourcing and supply chain management – especially in healthcare, where the first collaborative sourcing projects ever attempted were successfully executed under his direction. He has been the first business executive hired by technology innovators from MIT, the University of Cambridge and CMU, so getting high-brow intellectuals and early commercial adopters on the same page is a battle-tested communication skill that Tom has had ample opportunity to hone over a 30-year career. Tom earned his undergraduate degree at Allegheny College and went on to the University of Taipei to continue his study of Mandarin. He has a knack for connecting dots that others don’t see and a readily obvious ability to communicate the possibilities.


For Hospitals Only: Prodigo’s Dedication to its Core Market Continues to Pay Off

Often referred to as “Amazon-like” or the “storefront” application in a P2P suite, Prodigo Solutions’ centerpiece solution is a client-branded, internal marketplace developed exclusively for hospital use. Known as ProdigoMarketplace and complemented by other specialized applications also purpose-built just for hospitals, everything about Prodigo reveals its unmistakable healthcare pedigree. Prodigo’s sole dedication to the needs of hospitals is distinguished and has helped establish the company’s dominance, now boasting half of the nation’s largest and most recognizable health system brands as customers. Prodigo also is one of healthcare’s largest Marketplaces by spend under management — having transformative financial impact on its customers’ supply chain practices and operations.

Coupa-Aquiire Deal Highlights Key Change: Marketplace E-Procurement Models Aren’t One-Size-Fits-All Anymore

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Spend Matters’ recent coverage of Coupa’s purchase of Aquiire details Coupa’s acquisition rationale and the general wisdom of its decision — but the deal also calls attention to a useful context that evaluators of “Amazon-like” e-procurement systems would be well served to understand. As these systems are tailored for different industries, they should be evaluated for how they differ, not how they're the same. Let's look at three types of marketplaces spawned by the Amazon model.

Healthcare’s Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) Has Security Challenges, Forum Warns

“Healthcare” and “cybersecurity” don’t seem like they go together, but a security forum this week highlighted how the move to electronic health records and the growing use of connected medical devices — the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) — makes hospitals and patients vulnerable. After attending the forum, it’s clear that hospitals know they’re targets, but they may not understand the scope of the danger. The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) held its security forum in Boston this week, and it attracted a diverse audience. IT, finance and supply chain executives mingled with network security professionals. So hospitals are viewing security in a cross-functional way, and that’s a positive development.

LexisNexis Entity Insight: Vendor Snapshot (Part 3) — Summary and Competitive Analysis

The supplier risk management market includes a highly diverse set of providers, many of which are difficult to compare on an “apples to apples” basis with each other — unlike just about every other procurement technology segment. Within this market — which also can extended deeper into the tiers of a supply base in the form of supply chain risk management — more organizations are seeking to automate the management of risk as much as possible, as accurately as possible. And arguably, LexisNexis Entity Insight (LNEI) is better positioned than many of its peers to have deep, methodologically-driven conversations based on how it adjudicates data and verifies document integrity to drive risk analysis.

This third and final installment of this Spend Matters Vendor Snapshot covering LexisNexis provides an objective SWOT analysis of the provider and offers a competitive segmentation analysis and comparison. It also includes recommended shortlist candidates as alternative vendors to LexisNexis and offers provider-selection guidance. Finally, it gives summary analysis and recommendations for companies considering the vendor. Part 1 provided an in-depth look at LexisNexis as a supply risk provider and its specific solutions, and Part 2 gave a detailed analysis of solution strengths and weaknesses and a review of the product’s user experience.

LexisNexis Entity Insight: Vendor Snapshot (Part 2) — Product Strengths and Weaknesses

LexisNexis Entity Insight (LNEI) is a modern, “self-service” supplier management solution that the global data/market intelligence giant built to satisfy increasingly surging market demand for all things supplier risk management. Designed as a cost-effective, off-the-shelf solution, LNEI helps procurement, finance and supply chain organizations manage risk across their own supply networks, regardless of how nested or complex.

This Spend Matters PRO Vendor Snapshot explores LNEI’s strengths and weaknesses, providing facts and expert analysis to help procurement organizations decide whether they should consider the provider. Part 1 of our analysis provided a company and detailed solution overview, as well as a recommend fit list of criteria for firms considering LNEI. The third part of this series will offer a SWOT analysis, user selection guide, competitive alternatives, and additional evaluation and selection considerations.

Hospitals, Medical Marijuana and Procurement: A Few Obvious Questions

When patients using medical marijuana go to a hospital, all bets are off. Not only for them, but for a hospital that frankly has no option other than to confiscate their marijuana (or try to do so), assuming they know about it in the first place. Keep in mind, the patient may be legally authorized by the state to use medical marijuana, so the inconsistency here is loaded with potential legal problems. Despite all of this, when the talk of medical marijuana comes up, most all of the hospital officials I have spoken with readily admit that they haven’t even given the subject much thought.

HealthTrust: Healthcare GPO Provider Summary — Introduction, Summary Analysis, SWOT and Customer Engagement Tips

Through a combination of organic growth industry consolidation, three group purchasing organization (GPO) providers have come to dominate the healthcare market. These providers — Vizient, Premier and HealthTrust — control nearly 75% of spend in the healthcare GPO market. Despite this level of consolidation, the three competitors have, in certain cases, targeted different markets and introduced unique offerings. This Spend Matters PRO research brief provides an overview of HealthTrust, including a general introduction, key points analysis, SWOT framework and customer tips for getting the most out of engagement. For background on the GPO market, check out our two earlier briefs, An Introduction to Group Purchasing Organizations (GPOs) and Group Purchasing Organizations: Supplier Perspectives and the Evolving GPO Landscape. For general context, perspective and analysis of the healthcare GPO market in particular, see our recent three-part series: Part 1 (Background, History and Introduction), Part 2 (GPO criticisms and market consolidation/bifurcation) and Part 3 (Key Takeaways, Emerging Paradigm Shifts and Customer Recommendations).

Canadian Tariffs: Ketchup Iffy, Bourbon and Whiskey Kinda Risky

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In what is starting to look like a high stakes game show, Canada hit its trade war button Sunday, imposing 10% tariffs on a wide range of U.S. staples. Run through your grocery list of most things Kraft Heinz, add in a nice array of other foodstuffs found on adjacent aisles and, well, if events play out as usual, the affected companies will take disproportionate advantage of this latest opportunity to raise prices.

Premier: Healthcare GPO Provider Summary — Introduction, Summary Analysis, SWOT and Customer Engagement Tips

healthcare

Through a combination of organic growth industry consolidation, three group purchasing organization (GPO) providers have come to dominate the healthcare market. These providers — Vizient, Premier and HealthTrust — control nearly 75% of spend in the healthcare GPO market.

Despite this level of consolidation, the three competitors have, in certain cases, targeted different markets and introduced unique offerings. This Spend Matters PRO research brief provides an overview of Premier, including a general introduction, key points analysis, SWOT framework and customer tips for getting the most out of engagement.

For background on the GPO market, check out our two earlier briefs, An Introduction to Group Purchasing Organizations (GPOs) and Group Purchasing Organizations: Supplier Perspectives and the Evolving GPO Landscape. For general context, perspective and analysis of the healthcare GPO market in particular, see our recent three-part series: Part 1 (Background, History and Introduction), Part 2 (GPO criticisms and market consolidation/bifurcation) and Part 3 (Key Takeaways, Emerging Paradigm Shifts and Customer Recommendations).

Risk Management: Can You Keep a Secret?

I recently wrapped up a project researching the risk management solution market. I’ve lost count of how many different product presentations I’ve seen over the past month. Just assume it was more than a dozen. Yes, I admit it, I ran the gantlet and have emerged a bit jaded. Such is the nature of the risk I took. (Sorry, couldn’t help myself.) Across the spectrum of what truly has become a gold rush of risk management solutions, I was repeatedly asked much the same question by the vendors: “How can we best differentiate our market position. What’s the secret?” Let me quickly distill what I’ve learned.

Vizient: Healthcare GPO Provider Summary — Introduction, Summary Analysis, SWOT and Customer Engagement Tips

Through a combination of organic growth industry consolidation, three group purchasing organization (GPO) providers have come to dominate the healthcare market. These providers — Vizient, Premier and HealthTrust — control nearly 75% of spend in the healthcare GPO market.

Despite this level of consolidation, the three competitors have, in certain cases, targeted different markets and introduced unique offerings. This Spend Matters PRO research brief provides a summary overview of Vizient, including a general introduction, key points analysis, SWOT framework and customer tips for getting the most out of engagement.

For background on the GPO market, check out our two earlier briefs, An Introduction to Group Purchasing Organizations (GPOs) and Group Purchasing Organizations: Supplier Perspectives and the Evolving GPO Landscape. For general context, perspective and analysis of the healthcare GPO market in particular, see our recent three-part series: Part 1 (Background, History and Introduction), Part 2 (GPO criticisms and market consolidation/bifurcation) and Part 3 (Key Takeaways, Emerging Paradigm Shifts and Customer Recommendations).

The Healthcare Group Purchasing Organization Landscape (Part 3): Key Takeaways and Customer Recommendations

This Spend Matters PRO series explores the history and current state of the healthcare group purchasing organization (GPO) market. In this third installment, we provide key takeaways for the industry, analyze emerging trends in the market and offer customer recommendations.

For background on the GPO market, we encourage you to start here with our two earlier briefs on GPOs, An Introduction to Group Purchasing Organizations (GPOs) and Group Purchasing Organizations: Supplier Perspectives and the Evolving GPO Landscape. Then explore Part 1 (Background, History and Introduction) and Part 2 (GPO criticisms).