Free Research Paper — The Consumerisation of Corporate Systems

We have produced several research papers during the course of the past few months, some you may have missed owing to the holiday season. If that is the case, here is a quick reminder of what has recently been published that we believe will be of interest to you – all free to download on registration. The papers are written on a range of topical procurement industry challenges by our resident expert, Peter Smith, and include trends, analysis and advice. They are sponsored by firms that specialise in that particular field and often involve findings from interviews with senior procurement people in that area. Today let's look at:

The Consumerisation of Corporate Systems – Can business procurement technology learn from the consumer world?

The "consumerisation" of business procurement and spending is what comes from the business world having to benchmark itself against leading consumer online shopping experiences to stay relevant and competitive. It is unstoppable, and it is the procurement function that will often be responsible for putting in place the contracts and the technology that support this market shift.

So in this paper, sponsored by a global leader in networked purchase-to-pay solutions, eInvoicing and innovative financing services, Basware, we look at what defines “consumerisation.”  And ask: how do we make software easy to use and effective within the corporate (as opposed to the consumer) world? How should procurement professionals stay ahead of the game if they are to satisfy their internal stakeholders and reap the potential benefits of this approach?

The paper looks at what defines an online approach to buying:

"The developments we have seen in online consumer buying are driven by customer preference. Merchants, whether direct suppliers themselves or aggregators (such as marketplace providers) have learnt that making the buying experience pleasant and easy for consumers is essential if they are to succeed with online ventures. But what exactly is it that makes a commercial transaction attractive for the user; what is it that defines the core elements of consumer online buying? By “transaction”, we mean finding and choosing the goods or services required, ordering and paying for them, and taking delivery (although that takes us into the physical world which is not our main focus here). There appear to be five key topics which define the requirement and suggest the key factors that are also relevant when we talk about consumerisation of business procurement technology."

The paper goes on to explain what those five encompass. It then analyses how the corporate B2B world is doing against those criteria and asks what it is that the business world needs that the consumer world doesn’t. "Consumerisation is an important trend, but we shouldn’t get too carried away. There are aspects of B2B buying which are important in the corporate world but don’t matter so much in the B2C environment. We can’t afford to lose sight of these issues as we look to gain the benefits of consumer-type thinking," it explains.

It finishes with a look at what we can expect to see going forward and gives some key messages for procurement people to take away. The full report is here.

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