Procurement News from the US – Weekly Round-Up

Continuing on in our Hubwoo series:

Amidst SAP/Ariba Uncertainty, Hubwoo Moves Its Network Vision Forward (Part 4) -- Sense of urgency – there is no doubt that Hubwoo's current position in the market is greatly affected by the outcome of SAP's proposed acquisition of Ariba. But even with Ariba under its wing, SAP will have many years of product integration, solution rationalization and most important, platform/network re-architecting to contend with. During this time, Hubwoo has an opportunity to continue to capitalize on the SAP customer base, which is likely to want choice (e.g., not being locked into Ariba's supplier network fees). FYI – network sales, and the BPO team/BPO partnership are mutually exclusive topics within SAP. At the same time, we believe it is unlikely that Hubwoo will remain independent for long, based on current low valuation levels. (Part 3, Part 2, Part 1)

Coupa announces Release 8 -- our initial thoughts.

Coupa Announces Release 8, Adds Contract Visibility and E-Invoicing to P2P Arsenal -- Yesterday, Coupa announced that it would soon launch Release 8, making the latest version of its cloud P2P application suite available on September 14th. Two members of the Spend Matters team have been briefed on Release 8, but we have not yet seen the new functionality and enhancements outside of screen shots, so we'll withhold our detailed commentary until we've had a chance to play in the tool sandbox a bit.

A new approach to procurement career advancement?

BPO and In-House: Exploring the Category Analyst as Senior Procurement Executive (Part 1) -- Over the years in procurement, I've often observed two distinct models of career advancement, combining a "don't rock the boat, keep your job" philosophy and a more advanced, "up and out" perspective that more closely mirrors what you might see in a professional services environment. Occasionally there is a slight deviation from this latter model, where a more intellectual (often PhD type) becomes a process, tools and related champion but rarely rises to a CPO role. Still, we can distill the typical career progression in procurement from one of two approaches: steady, limited and safe or career climber.

A guest post from The Hackett Group’s Pierre Mitchell.

Is Supplier Diversity Still Relevant and Valuable in a Global Marketplace? -- I was reading about P&G's supplier diversity focus, and it's pretty typical stuff in terms of spelling out a high-level global context ("Our consumers, customers, and suppliers become more diverse every day. As a result, our success depends on an ability to understand their changing needs and work effectively with customers and suppliers around the world. Supplier Diversity is one important way we achieve our goal of touching lives and improving life"), but then getting very narrow with regards to implementation (i.e., US-based women/minority focus).

Spend Matters PRO Content preview of the week.

Taulia: Prospect/Customer Recommendations and Summary Analysis -- Based on our analysis of the Taulia product and our cursory (but deep) discussion with one of their larger customers, Spend Matters believes the Taulia solution is one of the most logical discounting solution options for companies with SAP back-end environments (the fewer the number of instances and versions, the better). However, with the recent announcement of SAP's pending acquisition of Ariba, we would encourage further diligence of Ariba's discounting solutions and capabilities as well based on current capabilities that will be made available through SAP.

And finally, welcome SciQuest!

SciQuest Joins Spend Matters as an Associate Sponsor - I'm pleased to announce that SciQuest, Inc. has joined Spend Matters as an associate sponsor. SciQuestis a provider of cloud-based source-to-settle solutions, with a particularly strong (dominant, even) presence in higher education market, and also in life sciences, with a growing footprint among Global 2000 commercial clients.

Let's close by Smashing it Up, in light of a recent fantastic vinyl find of my boyfriend's:

With that, I’m off to catch my flight to Seattle/Portland for the long holiday weekend!

- Sheena Moore

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