Procurement News from the US – Weekly Round-Up

This week’s technology reviews:

Vinimaya: From Valuable Niche to Broader P2P Enabler? Over the past five years, Vinimaya (see select past coverage: here and here) has come to represent a vendor that successfully remade itself in the wake of debuting technology that was originally developed for the consumer space, but actually found broader applicability to help companies manage and search distributed catalog, punch-out, website and related content in a B2B environment. Yet the company recently shared with Spend Matters a vision that extends beyond the valuable niche it served until recently, showing a handful of new solutions and new customer acquisition details suggesting that organizations are turning to the provider for more than simply solving catalog and content enablement challenges. (Here’s Part 2, and look for further coverage next week).

Supply Dynamics -- Making Sourcing/Supply Chain More Strategic Through Demand Aggregation (Part 1) Supply Dynamics is a boutique vendor serving a niche (a not-so-small niche, I might add) extremely well but is anything but a household name in the procurement and supply chain manufacturing community. Focusing on demand aggregation to help OEM and large tier-one suppliers buy more effectively on behalf of their supply base, the solution combines a range of elements focused on the acquisition, analysis and reporting of material demand data down to the unit level (as measured in weight) for raw materials. Access to this information on a multi-tier supply chain basis can enable a range of sourcing and related strategies, helping to reduce costs and supply risk for suppliers purchasing raw materials. (Part 2)

Don’t sweat the small stuff:

Feel guilty about that daily latte, worried that Suze Orman will come haunting you in the middle of the night? Have no fear -- just spend smart. Debunking the ‘Latte Factor’: It’s Not What You Buy, It’s How You Buy It “Ramit Sethi, author of the New York Times best-seller I will Teach You to be Rich, cautions against fretting over a $4 coffee: "Constantly over-analyzing tiny purchases is exhausting and ineffectual." He sounds more like the supply chain professional who focuses more on value than per-unit-cost! You may be surprised that one of his suggested solutions is financial automation -- because it enables smarter spend management rather than controlling every little purchase.”

Chain Reactions:

D&B has a new supply blog (Chain Reactions) and we approve: Even though there's not that much content posted yet, D&B recently launched a new supply chain and procurement blog titled Chain Reactions. I've got it bookmarked and look forward to checking in every so often and if you're looking for insights into supply chain risk management, you might want to as well. A recent post, "What's Your Plan for the Unplanned" examines the impact of one supply chain disaster on supplier facilities in a Tornado-stricken region of the country. It also shows how a geographic and geo-spatial (i.e., map/location-based) analysis of suppliers and facilities can be key to rapidly determine the impact of potential disasters on your supply chain -- including tier one and lower tier suppliers.

Pointing fingers...at ourselves:

Sorry to disappoint you, but we’re not perfect here at Spend Matters. Jason did a series of posts on Small Business Spend Management: “As a small business owner, I've often found myself not following the same tips that we provide to larger organizations when it comes to spending smart and buying less. Having rapidly shifted from a tiny services organization with a few contractors to a growing new media publishing group with a range of full-time and contract employees, I've watched firsthand how our lack of spending controls, inadequate sourcing focus and ability to eat our own platform/technology dog food has contributed to both direct and SG&A costs that are rising in disproportion to even our growing book of business. Now, this is some common stuff. After all, when a company is in hyper-growth mode, a focus on the top line overtakes any effort spent on the bottom, at least in a regular 50 hour work week (or 60, 70 or 80 as the case may be).” (Part 2, Part 3, Part 4)

In other news, I have successfully received my master’s degree! If anyone wants to read my final paper, “Levels of Hybridity: Sophie Mol as Metaphor, Sophie Mol as Little Girl Within Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things” (don’t all jump up at once)...pssshhhh forget it. All I’m doing now is rowing, playing tennis, and reading books for FUN.

- Sheena Moore

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