Uncategorized Content

Government Contracting: 5 Trends to Watch

It’s time to check in with Public Spend Forum, a sister site of ours, to see how knowing about trends in government contracting can improve your chances of landing those contracts, help you take advantage of emerging services and expand your business. Its story on government contracting focuses on five trends.

AP Automation: 5 Ways to Lead the Transformation

Accenture

According to research from McKinsey and Co., 70% of all transformations fail. But it doesn’t have to be that way. One of the biggest challenges facing a company that will be transitioning to AP automation is getting buy-in across the organization. Sure, management is happy because they are hopefully cutting costs and improving process efficiency, but what about the human aspect of change management? You can change the process, but how do you change minds to solidify that change? We’ve put together a list of strategies to help you lead the way and make the transition easier.

Aravo: Vendor Snapshot (Part 3) — Summary and Competitive Analysis [PRO]

suppliers

Of all the procurement solution providers Spend Matters has tracked over the years, Aravo was arguably the most ahead of its time, delivering a set of supplier management capabilities a decade before demand would catch up with supply for this multifaceted solution category.

Owning to the tenacity and passion of its original leadership and the secondary management team that would eventually take the helm, Aravo managed to survive and then thrive, waiting for the market to catch up to it — not the other way around. Today, Aravo excels at many disciplines within supplier management and third-party management, and has a track record of enabling some of the largest deployments of supplier information management (SIM) capabilities that Spend Matters has tracked in the broader market.

This third and final installment of this Spend Matters Vendor Snapshot covering Aravo provides a SWOT analysis of the provider and offers a competitive segmentation analysis and comparison. It also includes recommended shortlist candidates as substitute providers to Aravo and provider selection guidance. Finally, it provides summary analysis and recommendations for companies that can best take advantage of Aravo’s capabilities. Part 1 of this series provided an in-depth look at Aravo as a company and its specific solutions, and Part 2 gave a detailed analysis of solution strengths and weaknesses and a review of the user experience.

How Coupa, SAP Ariba and Basware Really Did in Our Q4 SolutionMap

In a paean to the recent Q4 SolutionMap release and subsequent personal analytical take on the three solution providers in this headline, Spend Matters Founder Jason Busch let everyone in on a not-so-secret secret. “Despite our marketing claims of having invested ‘hundreds of hours’ of analyst time in the process, the actual number felt like more in the thousands, by my own accounting,” Busch wrote. “I told one of my colleagues I felt like I was ‘in the Matrix’ at one point when looking at technology provider demonstrations.” While we’ve created a PO for an exact replica of the spectacles worn by Laurence Fishburne’s Morpheus in “The ‘Matrix” films to give Jason as a surprise (oops!) gift, we wanted to make sure to do justice to those many hours of collective team effort — by filling users in a bit more about what they can get out of SolutionMap.

DHL Resilience360: A High-End Supply Risk Solution Hiding in a Logistics Services Provider (Part 2: Determining the Fit) [PRO]

The market for supply chain risk management solutions continues to grow. SAP Ariba is back in the game, after a market hiatus from SAP Supplier InfoNet, with a new solution. Incumbents such as riskmethods and Resilinc continue to build out their offerings, and eager adoption from a growing customer base in manufacturing and other sectors is driving one of the healthiest revenue CAGRs in the procurement sector, according to Spend Matters research.

Within this sector, DHL Resilience360 offers a compelling set of capabilities that span risk assessment, supply chain network visualization, incident monitoring and risk response. (See Part 1 of this analysis for a full overview.) The solution stands out for how it incorporate logistics components into broader aspects of supply chain risk management.

This second installment of our analysis introducing DHL Resilience360 explores what types of customers are the best fit for the solution. It also offers a checklist to help organizations assess the relevance of Resilience360 for their risk management initiatives. But first, this analysis begins by asking key questions in the context of organizational supply chain risk management maturity, readiness and priorities, including, “Who should use this solution and why?”

Chasing After Procurement Excellence: Findings from A.T. Kearney’s Latest Report

Deloitte Global CPO Survey 2016

World-class procurement organizations see a comparatively threefold higher return on their supply management assets, according to A.T. Kearney’s 2017 Assessment of Excellence in Procurement. The firm has been conducting these assessments every three years or so since 1992, and this is its ninth assessment. A.T. Kearney divides companies into four groups based on their ability to manage external spend: Leaders (7%); Aspirants (11%); The Pack (55%); and Strugglers (27%). The “Leaders” are twice as likely to invest in supplier innovation, risk management and digital technologies like blockchain or automation.

Could Rising Rapeseed Oil Prices Impact the US’s New Love for the Oil?

Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Jonathan Stokes, market analyst at Mintec.

Global rapeseed oil prices have risen steeply since the middle of June, as adverse weather conditions in a number of major rapeseed producing countries have resulted in declining crop prospects worldwide. In the U.S., usage of rapeseed oil is predicted to increase 0.3 million tonnes, to a record 2.63 million tonnes in 2016/2017, due to a sharp decline in domestic soybean oil usage in the food sector.

Afternoon Coffee: Hurricane Harvey Sends Gasoline Prices Soaring, Amazon to Lower Prices at Whole Foods

Energy companies are about to feel the pain of Texas’ worst storm in decades. Amazon takes control over Whole Foods Monday, and the new owner’s first move will be to slash prices the same day. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Driving Compliance in Healthcare: Where Good Pitching Still Seems to Beat Great Hitting

Since the beginning of time (it seems), industry-focused supply chain management application vendors have rushed to fill ERP solution gaps. The market’s early-to-mid-stage technology adopters have invested in these “best in breed” solutions and realized the value, accepting certain workarounds, often related to data integration. Despite the staggeringly complex and ongoing problems of core hospital enterprise management, the ERP vendors are already moving into additional application spaces, as their healthcare customers, based on their efforts, are finally getting connected.

Oracle Procurement Cloud: Vendor Snapshot (Part 2) — Product Strengths & Weaknesses [PRO]

Oracle Procurement Cloud is a procurement technology suite that is targeted primarily at three key market segments. First, net new Oracle ERP Cloud customers who are looking to add procurement suite functionality. Second are those organizations that are current Oracle eBusiness Suite, PeopleSoft or JD Edwards ERP customers that may migrate to the cloud for their core financial system. And third are those customers with “installed” Oracle solutions for procurement (Oracle eBusiness Suite Procurement, PeopleSoft SRM, etc.), although these organizations may or may not (yet) be a fit for Oracle Procurement Cloud based on organizational requirements, including the degree of customization done to previous solutions.

Regardless, in many cases, Oracle customers considering Procurement Could will not have purchased a full source-to-pay (S2P) or procure-to-pay (P2P) suite from third-party vendors in the past, although they may have had experience with individual modules and solutions from Oracle procurement competitors. But in certain cases, Oracle customers have replaced suite capability from providers such as SAP Ariba and Coupa.

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

What You Should Expect from Best-in-Class E-Sourcing User Experience and Functionality [PRO]

E-sourcing technologies have been around for two decades now. The authors have played various roles over the years in helping architect them, design them, configure them, select them and use them. Yet while today e-sourcing should be a mature and functionally rich technology out of the box, the reality is that there are still a number of offerings that don't have some of the most basic features you would have expected some years ago.

In contrast, other offerings continue to push the envelope in various areas of what the product can offer. In this two-part Spend Matters PRO brief, we outline what specific elements you should expect from best-in-class e-sourcing user experience and functional components. In the first installment, we cover how best-in-class solution designs feature guided event creation, clutter-free views and simplified template creation and management. As will soon become clear, it is impossible to separate a best-in-class user experience from underlying functional capability in many areas of strategic sourcing technology — the two are becoming increasingly yoked. Form following function. Or function following form. You decide!

Procurement’s Role in the Enterprise Working Capital Mandate

With a heightened awareness over how a supplier ecosystem affects a company’s balance sheet, implementing working capital programs is increasingly part of the procurement and supply chain organizations' responsibilities, in addition to the traditional worlds of treasury and finance. The ever constant pressure to find “cash” in an organization is now commonplace as the days of cash-rich businesses having excess cash or access to cheap bank sources of funding are all but over. Combine that with technology and macroeconomic trends that have affected many business processes, including supply chain flows, and more so than ever, companies must find ways to work out supply chain finance programs between departments and outside the organization.