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Spend Matters Future 5 2023 — Introducing ORO Labs

11/16/2023 By

The procurement technology market is evolving rapidly and deploying the latest power that innovation can bring to support the changing and challenging needs of its customers. In an ever-crowded space it’s hard for those who rely on these platforms and systems to keep ahead of the latest developments.

For that reason, Spend Matters analysts make it their mission to scour the market to find those new solution providers that can fulfil a very specialist role to fulfill the procurement needs of today. Following months of debate based on extensive knowledge of the many procurement technologies they have reviewed, analysed and benchmarked, they arrive at a list of five young providers that they believe are innovative and exciting, have a rapidly rising presence in the market, can grow sustainably and which every CPO should have on their radar.

These start-ups are taking technology further to address problems not previously solved, or are introducing a new category of automation that tackles new challenges in interesting ways. We believe these companies deserve greater visibility, especially in a market which is increasingly consolidating and diluting buyer choices.

Get to know all the procurement tech providers that made our lists this year and the methodology behind the selection criteria: 

So we are delighted to introduce you to our Future 5 as we capture their voices. Today please get to know ORO Labs.

What is ORO Labs?

ORO, the orchestration platform designed by ORO Labs, is part of an emerging market that aims to provide organizations with a single entry point that is independent from the underlying solutions they use. This addresses the complexity created by the sheer number of solutions in the market by breaking silos and creating bridges between applications, which makes the complexity less visible or even disappear.

How ORO Labs came into being

Sudhir Bhojwani, co-founder and CEO of ORO, explained the background to ORO Labs: “I spent over a decade working at SAP Ariba, and in the procurement technology space in general. Through this experience, I’ve come to realize that some of the greatest risk to procurement processes comes as a result of low adoption of procurement solutions, and that low rates of adoption are a direct consequence of the fact that user experiences haven’t kept up with worker expectations. In other words, there’s a disconnect between the interests of procurement professionals and expectations of the people they serve. So, I asked myself, ‘how can we solve this issue?’ We needed a fresh start.”

Lalitha Rajagopalan, co-founder, head of strategy and GTM, detailed the rationale behind the ORO platform: “What we are building is essentially a response to the radical difference between how modern businesses operate compared to more traditional ones. Older businesses took a very command and control approach. But digital transformation has changed how businesses operate. Technology has become an enabler for business users to do things for themselves while also ensuring that guardrails are in place to prevent them from introducing additional risk. When you’re booking a flight, for example, you usually want to book the tickets yourself, not through a travel agent. Similarly, we believe modern procurement work requires a modern, personalized, and empathetic experience.”

What is ORO Labs’ greatest strength?

Lalitha Rajagopalan: “Our greatest strength lies in our ability to humanize the procurement experience for all users. ORO Labs has succeeded in creating a no-code workflow platform capable of automating the most complex procurement processes, and in ways that feel natural, intuitive, and easy for every kind of user.

“We’ve approached this in a very unique way.

“You are never going to get a process totally right the first time. Everyone talks about digital procurement, but we know that most digital transformation initiatives fail. Why? They don’t have an experimental mindset. They don’t think ‘I’m going to try this, and if it doesn’t work, I’ll try something else.’ But that’s how user experiences are updated and refined. Most procurement solutions on the market today do not allow organizations to experiment, and so result in high implementation costs, low agility in response to change, and a stifled capacity for innovation.

“The user experience that fits best with a procurement team’s practices doesn’t come ‘out-of-the-box.’ We can’t say ‘all IT people are the same, so they get the same IT experience.’ A strong platform needs the ability to personalize today, and to be agile in response to tomorrow’s challenges and opportunities. ORO helps organizations to thrive by giving procurement teams the tools they need to create, run, refine, and enhance experiences so they can fully realize their potential as strategic partners to the organizations they serve.”

What’s the road ahead for ORO Labs?

Sudhir Bhojwani: “We aim to be the procurement front-end for companies. We want business users to procure whatever they are trying to procure, and to feel empowered to do so without friction. ORO is purpose-built to automate end-to-end workflows so they can do just that. It has the intelligence to understand what users need to accomplish their goals. And it is able to orchestrate complex processes by integrating with other tools. Of course, not everything will happen in ORO — in fact, nothing ever happens in any one tool anymore! We want to be the procurement front door, providing business users with a single unified experience regardless of how many different systems may be involved in a given process.”

What does it mean to be a Future 5?

Lalitha Rajagopalan: “The Spend Matters analyst team is incredibly rigorous, and it takes a lot to impress them. Being recognized in Spend Matters Future 5 further validates the transformative power of the platform we are building and, most importantly, affirms the importance of ORO’s mission: to humanize the procurement experience for every user.”

The Future 5