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Beeline

As part of the SolutionMap RFI process, Spend Matters continuously solicits customer references to determine a procurement technology provider’s placement on the ranking graphics. This is a Spend Matters curated summary of verified customer feedback for Beeline, a SolutionMap-ranked provider.

Beeline update: VMS veteran makes strides on partner network, UI, services procurement, direct sourcing

After about a year since our last meeting with Beeline, Spend Matters recently had the opportunity to be briefed by its team on developments related to the comprehensive Beeline global VMS solution. One thing is for sure: Beeline is not resting on its laurels. Now celebrating its 20th year in business, the company is growing and responding to market changes.

In this PRO review, we present what we learned in the briefing, which covered a number of areas:

* Business overall
* Partner ecosystem (including key new partnerships)
* UI upgrade
* Candidate evaluation experience (including new evaluation partnership)
* Services procurement (including independent contractor solution, compliance and complex sourcing)
* Direct sourcing (including a direct sourcing platform partnership)

This brief will conclude with our thoughts on the recent briefing.

Beeline: What Makes It Great (Temporary Staffing/VMS SolutionMap Analysis)

Editor’s note: This “What Makes It Great” column is normally reserved for SolutionMap Insider Subscribers, but Beeline has graciously agreed to unlock this piece for readers who are not yet members.

The contingent workforce and services technology market consists of three main segments: temporary staffing, which represents the classic vendor management system (VMS) market; independent contract workers (ICW), which includes technology for managing freelance resources; and contracted services/statement of work (SOW). Of the three, temporary staffing has historically attracted the majority of CW/S technology spend, and in these solution selections, Beeline has long been a familiar face whenever a VMS or VMS/MSP is up for consideration, both in North America and globally — especially in scenarios where technology is an essential consideration to the buyer.

As of Q3 2018, Spend Matters SolutionMap contains more than 1,250 functional and customer satisfaction benchmarks encompassing more than 50 procurement software companies. In our first SolutionMap release for contingent workforce and services procurement, nine providers participated in our rigorous evaluation and rating process. Among these nine, Beeline, aside from having significant critical mass, is also the last independent provider remaining in the sector that is not part of a larger source-to-pay (S2P) or ERP parent. So as the last independent solution standing, how does Beeline stack up to its peers? Where does it stand out most, how does it help “set the bar” and why should this matter for procurement and HR organizations?

Join us in exploring what makes Beeline great, based on the latest functional and customer SolutionMap benchmarks from Q3 2018.

“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.

Beeline: Vendor Analysis (Part 3) — Competitive and Summary Analysis

Beeline remains one of the top vendor management system (VMS) brands in the contingent workforce market today, holding market share that is roughly equal to SAP Fieldglass following its merger with IQNavigator. The company, which operates independently of any larger software or staffing-related firm, has distinguished itself with a forward-looking strategy and innovative solutions to changing market requirements.

But in a sector marked by rapid change, including procurement’s continued interest in gaining greater control over complex services spend (e.g., professional services) as well as labor market alternatives (e.g., freelancers), the traditional VMS solution model is evolving and its scope widening. That can be both positive and negative. VMS, now becoming more of a broader solution suite, may be perceived in the market as transforming from a sharp, fit-for-purpose tool to a Swiss army knife. While Beeline is not sitting still in this market by any means, it faces — as do other VMS providers — dampened growth rates and narrowing margins, as well as the specter of continuing direct competition from other VMS providers, new competition in the VMS market and a range of alternatives and substitutes targeting different types of services and labor.

This third and final installment of this Spend Matters Vendor Snapshot provides a SWOT analysis of Beeline and offers a competitive segmentation of the complex landscape Beeline faces. It also includes recommended candidates that could serve as alternatives to Beeline, as well guidance for procurement practitioners developing a shortlist. Finally, it provides a summary analysis and recommendations for companies considering Beeline.

Beeline: Vendor Analysis (Part 2) — Product Strengths & Weaknesses

This Vendor Snapshot focuses on Beeline, a contingent workforce and services sourcing and management technology solution provider. For years one of the top global players in the traditional VMS software category, the company has begun to expand its solution in a number of different directions to address the changing needs of enterprise clients at a time when external workforce utilization is increasing and new technology solutions for sourcing and managing contingent workforce and services (CW/S) are required. Although Beeline, as a company now merged with IQNavigator (IQN), currently serves clients with two VMS solutions, in this series we focus on the Beeline platform; we plan to address the IQN solution in the future.

Part 1 of our analysis provided a company and solution overview, including basic fit criteria for firms considering Beeline. Part 2 explores Beeline’s product strengths and weaknesses, providing facts and expert analysis to help procurement organizations decide if they should shortlist the vendor to enable their services procurement technology requirements. It also offers a high-level evaluation of the user interface. Part 3 of this series will offer a SWOT analysis, user selection guide, competitive alternatives, and additional evaluation and selection considerations.

Beeline: Vendor Analysis (Part 1) — Background & Solution Overview

Beeline is a global “external workforce management solutions” provider and, alongside SAP Fieldglass, one of the top two providers of VMS solutions globally, based on volume and revenue. After years occupying the traditional VMS software category, the company has begun to expand its solution in a number of different directions to address the changing needs of enterprise clients at a time when external workforce utilization is increasing and new technology solutions for sourcing and managing contingent workforce and services (CW/S) are required.

This Spend Matters PRO Vendor Snapshot provides facts and expert analysis to help buying organizations make informed decisions about whether they need a solution like Beeline as provider of VMS software or a provider of technology-based CW/S solutions beyond traditional VMS. Part 1 of our analysis provides a company background and detailed solution overview, as well as a summary recommended fit suggestion for when organizations should consider Beeline. Parts 2 and 3 of this multipart research brief cover product strengths and weaknesses, competitor and SWOT analyses, user selection guides and insider evaluation and selection considerations.

Note: Since Beeline merged with IQNavigator in 2016, there have been two VMS technology platforms operating under the Beeline brand. (A process to “converge” the two platforms on a new, state-of-the-art technology architecture is underway.) In this particular Vendor Snapshot, the section Beeline Solution Overview — Offerings and Functionality (below) focuses only on the Beeline VMS technology platform, pending separate treatment of the IQN platform. The order of treatment is in no way intended to suggest a ranking of one platform over the other.