Procurement News from the US – Weekly Round-Up

Big news for manufacturers this week.

SEC’s Conflict Minerals Rules: MetalMiner Interviews BravoSolution’s Mickey North Rizza -- Yesterday, the SEC promulgated rules associated with section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act, or the Conflict Minerals Law as we informally call it. We intimated in a post yesterday that this rule would have a profound impact on manufacturing organizations. Many organizations "are already doing it," according to Mickey North Rizza, now vice president of Strategic Services at BravoSolution, and formerly of AMR Research and Gartner. "This is all about risk management."

This week’s PRO preview from Thomas Kase (who sits through millions of demos, and therefore knows).

Solution Providers – How Do You Win Over Cynical Buyers and Analysts? -- Life as a solution provider isn't easy. Not only do you have to be well prepared, know your client's needs, and your own solution and capabilities. You also must be ready to deal with the unpredictability of internet connections and other technical blowups waiting to happen during demos. Then there are the vagaries of some buyers and their spur of the moment ideas to create "gotcha!" moments to either fail you or to create bargaining leverage. Yes, I wasn't always an analyst: I have spent a good number of years on the solution provider side, so I feel your pain when your demo doesn't go as planned.

Integrating eProcurement with P2P systems doesn’t have to be terrible!

eProcurement and P2P Systems Integration: Summary Recommendations (Part 1) -- Based on our recent and past research (as well as our own experience implementing various procurement systems over the years), Spend Matters cannot overemphasize the importance of prioritizing systems integration as a core component of overall P2P strategy. Some companies may not select specific P2P systems based on the native and cloud integration capability of the toolset over other areas (e.g., ease of use). This needs to change, as we believe it is essential to think about integration even before a selection process begins – and for integration to have at least moderate consideration during a selection process.

Those amazing computers in Minority Report are a coming reality?

TAKE Solutions: Converge 2012 conference – Trends in Pharmaceuticals and Life Sciences (Part 2) -- The Converge conference had a broad range of topics centered around disruption. We had the pleasure of listening to Michio Kaku (a physicist along the lines of a modern day Einstein) and his thoughts on what the future might hold. It was fascinating, albeit slightly untethered from our daily lives at the moment. Later, John Underkoffler gave an equally fascinating (and more practical) presentation around his work with advance computer input methods that do away with the keyboard, mouse and window paradigm that is holding back our computer utilization at the moment. John's firm Oblong Industrieswas behind the 3D interface that Tom Cruise's character used in the movie Minority Report. Most interestingly, this was not a pure CGI creation! John showed how they have actual solutions that work with exactly the methods ("g-speak," aka gesture-speak) used in the movie – albeit not quite as flashy, and without any future prediction capabilities. A fascinating presentation of what is likely right around the corner. (Part 1 here)

Hubwoo makes its mark in the industry.

Stepping Away from SAP/Ariba Uncertainty, Hubwoo Moves Its Network Vision Forward (Part 1) -- Man in the middle – Hubwoo is a company caught in the middle of SAP's broader ambitions, with Ariba, to own the world's largest supplier network and installed base for P2P. The smaller ambition is to deliver greater value to current SRM customers and also defend its turf in the market through the use of a closely aligned partner. Given the uncertainty of the timing and closing of the Ariba deal (considering the ongoing DOJ investigation of potential antitrust concerns), Hubwoo's strategic importance to SAP remains solid to strong. Hubwoo is a hedge for SAP regardless of whether the Ariba deal is closed sooner, later, or even not at all.

- Sheena Moore

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