P2P Content

Oracle Procurement Cloud: What Makes It Great (Procure-to-Pay SolutionMap Analysis)

Enterprises have numerous choices for procure-to-pay solutions today. But only one vendor offers a fully unified, single ecosystem of business applications that span not only e-procurement and invoice-to-pay processes but also financials, supply chain collaboration and HR.

And that vendor is Oracle.

As it has patiently migrated all of its solutions to the cloud, Oracle has maintained a “slow and steady” approach to its long-term technology strategy. That doesn’t mean its cloud applications have developed at the same pace, though. Perhaps surprising to some, Oracle’s P2P solution has in recent years leapfrogged other providers in the procurement technology market. Today it ranks among the top solutions for P2P, as our comparative SolutionMap benchmarks illustrate. And continued investments in areas like user experience, early payments support and artificial intelligence (AI) stand to only strengthen the mega vendor’s downstream capabilities.

But where does Oracle stand out most and help “set the bar” in P2P, and why should this matter for procurement and finance organizations? Let’s delve into the SolutionMap benchmark to find out where Oracle is great.

“What Makes It Great” is a recurring column that shares insights from each quarterly SolutionMap report for SolutionMap Insider subscribers. Based on both our rigorous evaluation process and customer reference reviews, each brief offers quick facts on the provider, describes where it excels, provides hard data on where it beats the SolutionMap benchmark and concludes with a checklist for ideal customer scenarios in which procurement, finance and supply chain organizations should consider it.

SolutionMap: 59 procurement software companies ranked (Q4 2019 Update)

Spend Matters today released its Q4 2019 SolutionMap, ranking 59 procurement software companies across 12 solution categories, including E-Procurement, Sourcing, Spend Analytics, Supplier Relationship Management, Contract Lifecycle Management and Contingent Workforce & Services. Click on this article to see which new providers joined the rankings this quarter — and to see how to access the rankings for free!

Q4 2019 Procure-to-Pay (P2P): Provider Scoring Summary

The Spend Matters SolutionMap Procure-to-Pay (P2P): Provider Scoring Summary is only available to SolutionMap Members. This SolutionMap analyzes a select group of procure-to-pay solution providers. It is part of our Q4 2019 SolutionMap report series, also featuring spend analytics, sourcing, supplier management, contract management, e-procurement and invoice-to-pay providers.

Tradeshift: Vendor Snapshot Update (Part 2) — Product Strengths and Weaknesses [PRO]

FM Global Resilience Index

Besides the likes of “mega” players like Amazon Business, is there a market for marketplaces? When Tradeshift embarked on its journey to create a platform between organizations in 2010, it had to believe such a need would eventually become mainstream, otherwise its vision and reality would fail to intersect. Fortunately for those that backed Tradeshift’s initial hypothesis, less than a decade since launching, more companies — not just early adopters — are becoming aware of what a platform concept can deliver beyond business applications.

This Spend Matters PRO Vendor Snapshot Update adds to last year’s Tradeshift strengths and weaknesses, providing facts and expert analysis to help procurement and finance organizations decide whether they should consider the provider from both an applications and marketplace/platform perspective. Look for updates on global support, the AI-assistant Ada, analytics, channel/systems integration partner networks, and customer value.

Part 1 of our analysis provided a company and detailed solution overview centered on Tradeshift’s business applications, as well as a recommend fit list of criteria for firms considering the provider. The third part of this series will offer a SWOT analysis, user selection guide, competitive alternatives, and additional evaluation and selection considerations.

Why would Medius buy Wax Digital? (Part 2: Wax strengths, customers, integration considerations)

Yesterday, AP automation specialist Medius announced it was acquiring Wax Digital, the UK-based source-to-pay suite provider. Together, they hope to carve out a unique niche in targeting procurement and finance organizations primarily in Europe and North America (although both have global customers and users).

In Part 1 of this Spend Matters Nexus series, we provided an overview and introduction to Wax Digital and Medius, touched on the product strengths and weaknesses for Wax, and explored the rationale for the transaction.

As we continue our analysis today, we add in the customer voice to the mix, specifically focusing on Wax Digital’s economic buyers (e.g., CPOs, procurement VPs, etc.) and what they think about the solution, because customer feedback is one way we score solutions for our free vendor ranking system, SolutionMap. We also will go deeper on some of the more specific strengths of the solution at the platform and functional levels, and explore how this might affect users of the combined solution. And we’ll look at integration touchpoints for Wax and Medius.

Later this week and next, we will continue our exploration of the combination, delving into the impact on the competitive landscape, including an analysis of how the combination may affect competitive AP automation and invoice-to-pay vendors as well as procure-to-pay and source-to-pay suites. Finally we will explore how the total addressable market (TAM) expands when combining finance and procurement together. TAM is a key metric that sponsors use to analyze investment opportunities.

Jason Busch serves as Managing Director of Spend Matters Nexus, a research and advisory group that works with sponsors, CEOs and boards on due diligence, M&A strategy and product strategy. Spend Matters and Spend Matters Nexus are owned by Azul Partners. Disclosure: Azul Partners served as an adviser to Marlin Equity in this transaction.

Customer reviews for Determine (Corcentric) are in the new SolutionMap Customer Insights report

This week’s SolutionMap Customer Insights report focuses on customer reviews for the suite  provider Determine, a Corcentric company.

The applicable SolutionMap categories for this report are Source-to-Pay, Procure-to-Pay, and Strategic Procurement Technologies (SPT includes Sourcing, Analytics, CLM and SRM). Determine has been bought by Corcentric. Integrations between the two provider platforms are not factored into the Customer Insights analysis, which is entirely based on Determine’s capabilities.

SolutionMap Insider members can read about Determine in our latest report.

In each Customer Insights report, we provide a one-page summary of details from the SolutionMap peer review process. It includes ratings on how well the vendor meets its customers' expectations, three key differentiators for the vendor and a list of quotes from customers about the vendor’s greatest strengths.

So You Want to Build a P2P Marketplace? An Introduction to Unique B2B Technology, Platform and Application Requirements [PRO]

Procure-to-pay (P2P) solutions do not just have to take the form of “vanilla” cloud/SaaS applications. Increasingly, organizations are becoming aware of the power of B2B marketplace models and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) models, which can enable greater flexibility to configure P2P capabilities for a combination of internal and third-party users — and in certain cases, to leverage the buying, distribution, payment / financing (in the case of banks), and supply chain assets of the marketplace sponsor to create entirely new business models through the use of technology.

In many ways, this is the realization of the vision of the original B2B marketplaces from two decades ago (e.g., Commerce One MarketSite, i2 TradeMatrix, Ariba/Tradex, Atlas Commerce, etc.), but with technology that can support the complex requirements involved in many-to-many and multi-tier collaboration models, as well as integration approaches that go beyond standard API calls.

This is B2B nirvana for procurement and supply chain geeks like us who have lived through multiple cycles of marketplace enthusiasm (madness?). The fact that a number of vendors exist today that can service these models effectively is testament to just how far technology has come in recent years. This includes not only the usual P2P best-of-breed subjects supporting these models (e.g., Basware, Coupa, Ivalua, SAP, Tradeshift, etc.) but also names you might not be familiar with as well.

This Spend Matters PRO brief provides an introduction to the types of platform and functional capabilities necessary for organizations considering building a marketplace model or leveraging an existing PaaS application ecosystem to go outside the box of standard P2P process models and operating models for internal use only.

Leveraging Spend Matters’ experience in managing the technology selection processes for marketplace initiatives and our SolutionMap vendor RFI requirements, our analysis introduces a range of platform and application requirements that companies should consider when evaluating solutions that can power the requirements of marketplace models for B2B relationships beyond the standard requirements expected of P2P solutions.

These include core platform components, data schema, data management, workflow, personalization, supplier portal, supplier information management, analytics, globalization and related requirements.

Customer reviews for GEP are in the new SolutionMap Customer Insights report

This week’s SolutionMap Customer Insights report focuses on customer reviews for GEP, a suite provider of procurement technology. The applicable SolutionMap categories for this report are Source-to-Pay, Procure-to-Pay, and Strategic Procurement Technologies (SPT includes sourcing, analytics, CLM and SRM). SolutionMap Insider members can read about GEP in our latest report. In each Customer Insights report, we provide a one-page summary of details from the SolutionMap peer review process. It includes ratings on how well the vendor meets its customers' expectations, three key differentiators for the vendor and a list of quotes from customers about the vendor’s greatest strengths.

Negotiatus: Vendor Introduction (Part 2 — Product Strengths and Weaknesses, SWOT, Selection Checklist) [PRO]

e-invoicing

In our last Spend Matters PRO brief, we introduced you to Negotiatus, an upstart P2P provider out of New York City that’s offering a fresh take on how to solve the root causes of common purchasing headaches. Taking the view that procurement should route users and payments through one (consolidated) invoice approach, Negotiatus aims to help its customers drastically reduce the number of transactions they need to process. In this view, purchasing automation represents a symptom of dysfunction rather than a panacea to inefficient business processes, and many of Negotiatus’ strengths thus reflect its guiding philosophy of simplicity and elimination of unnecessary work.

This approach, complemented by its supporting technology and rapidly growing client base, was a central reason we named Negotiatus to this year’s inaugural Future 5 list, which highlights standout start-up companies in procurement technology. 

But such a philosophy may not be a fit for every procurement organization, and by its own admission, Negotiatus is often a better fit with younger, more “forward-thinking” procurement organizations than corporate stalwarts. Its functionality lags accordingly when compared with peers that strive to “check the box” on requirements expected by a more classically minded procurement group.

Part 1 of this brief provided some background on Negotiatus and an overview of its offering — from ordering/shopping and catalogs to invoicing and payment.

In Part 2, we will provide a breakdown of what is comparatively good (and not so good) about the solution, a high-level SWOT analysis and a short selection requirements checklist that outlines the typical company for which Negotiatus might be a good fit. We also give some final conclusions and takeaways.

Negotiatus: Vendor Introduction (Part 1 — Background and Solution Overview) [PRO]

The market for standalone e-procurement and P2P solutions appears to be entering a new act. After a wave of consolidation soaked up multiple best-of-breed providers (e.g., Verian, Puridiom, Aquiire), suite solutions took control, leaving only a handful of standalone alternatives. But now a new class of purchasing solutions is entering the market, each looking to disrupt the standard approaches to corporate procurement in their own way.

Some focus heavily on updating user experience and driving fast time-to-value. Others position their tools as a means to tackle specific problems (e.g., tail spend) or vertical-specific requirements. But generally the approach relies on a common theme: To win in the P2P market, new solutions need to do something different. Rather than accept the status quo of how procurement is done, many of these companies hope to offer a fresh take, whether that’s through how the technology is designed or how the business model can enable new approaches to purchasing.

This mindset applies to Negotiatus, the subject of this Spend Matters’ PRO Vendor Introduction. Based in New York City, Negotiatus is technically a P2P solution — that is, it supports ordering/shopping, catalogs, invoicing and payment, so in effect the whole P2P cycle — but it does not take a “check the box” approach to feature/function development. Instead, the founders decided to assess the root causes of common P2P problems and develop a solution that could eliminate them, rather than simply alleviate them. This approach works for some organizations better than others, but for clients such as Soul Cycle, Zeus Living and Cozen O’Connor, it’s a radical idea that can cut user ordering by as much as 75% and generate 8% median savings, according to Negotiatus.

This Vendor Introduction offers a candid take on Negotiatus and its capabilities. The first part of this series includes a company introduction and an overview of Negotiatus’ offering. The second part of this brief provides a breakdown of what is comparatively good (and not so good) about the solution, a high-level SWOT analysis, and some market implications and takeaways.

Tipalti and the Accounts Payable Automation Market: Now Officially Hot, Hot, Hot!

procurement

Earlier this week, you may have seen that Tipalti raised $76 million in a Series D funding round. For those who do not know Tipalti, it is one of a variety of accounts payable automation (and payment providers) in the B2B market.

With a primary emphasis on middle market companies, Tipalti’s AP automation competitors include both broader procure-to-pay vendors that also come down market (e.g., Basware, Corcentric, Coupa, SAP Ariba, Tradeshift, etc.) and a diverse set of accounts payable automation specialists, including Accrualify, AvidXChange, Beanworks, SAP Concur, Symbeo, MineralTree, MediusFlow, Yooz and dozens of others.

It’s our view that Tipalti’s funding round is proof positive that the AP automation market is truly hot.

How to Use SolutionMap Buying Personas

The needs of each procurement organization — as well as procurement-solution providers’ organizations — are too nuanced for “one size fits all”-style rankings and recommendations from other industry intelligence firms and experts. That’s why Spend Matters ranks procurement and supply chain software providers through the prism of buying personas. With the Q3 2019 SolutionMap released today, let's revisit why this is an essential approach to the procurement technology market.