Spend Matters: Surround Strategies to Enhance SAP, Oracle and Ariba (Part 4)

Please click here for Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 of this series.

A couple weeks ago, Spend Matters released a new research brief on the P2P market: Surround Strategies to Get More From Existing ERP, eProcurement and P2P Investments. The paper is easy reading. We promise no feature/function checklists or exhaustive bulleted sections like some other things we've published of late. What we have done is analyzed the current state of P2P deployments and distilled our analysis down to introducing and explaining five different "surround" strategies for organizations hoping to get more from existing SAP, PeopleSoft, Oracle, Ariba, Basware and related P2P systems. These different strategies are:

  1. Invest in a new user experience layer that creates a usability buffer and potentially adds new capability
  2. Augment existing eProcurement or P2P investments with third-party tools or solutions in targeted areas that improve the basic capability of the system itself
  3. Invest in complementary technology that goes beyond original capabilities
  4. Work with a third-party solutions provider that will provide technology and more services-driven capabilities
  5. Purchase new solutions that gradually consume their hosts

In this post, we'll explore the fourth option on the list: working with a third-party solution provider that will provide technology and more services-driven capabilities. BPOs can provide technology (and services in different ways), including in a platform as a service (PaaS) manner. And they can offer (potentially significant) services-driven capabilities as well.

These solutions or services might include broader capabilities for supplier onboarding (including vendor hand-holding), contract implementation, and supplier/catalog/master data management maintenance, management, and services. There are numerous providers in this market, often addressing very different areas and components. For example, SciQuest may be considered a BPO for managing catalog content in certain vertical industries and spend categories, but it does not compete more broadly against an end-to-end sourcing/category management procurement BPO such as a Procurian. Nor does it have overlap in services/capabilities delivered by many BPOs or provide BPO capabilities like an Achilles for supplier management (even though it does sell software in this area).

Other BPO providers for consideration in this space include:

If you're looking to "surround" a current eProcurement, invoice automation or related implementation, we encourage you to download: Surround Strategies to Get More From Existing ERP, eProcurement and P2P Investments. Readers should take note that Spend Matters research will only be available to qualified practitioners (free of charge) in the coming months.

- Jason Busch

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