Procurement News from the US – Weekly Round-Up

We’ve had a hodgepodge of content this week ranging from ongoing technology reviews to whether or not we should all dress up in terrifying waterproof make-up and make “Synchronized Purchasing and AP” an Olympic event. Here we go:

Ongoing coverage of Rearden’s Deem at Work Platform.

Rearden Launches Deem at Work Platform and Suite For SMB Spend Control and Savings (Part 3) -- Of all of the T&E applications we've seen over the years, the Deem at Work platform is among the most easy and quick to use, if not the easiest in the market for companies that don't require all the bells and whistles of enterprise T&E solutions. Even for administrators, the application can be rapidly configured and gets users up and running quickly. The initial process for using the system requires just two steps (for registered companies on the Deem platform). (Also see Part 1 and Part 2).

What exactly GXS and Rollstream have been up to.

RollStream and GXS: The Start of a Combined Supplier Management and Trading Network (Part 2) -- From a deployment perspective, RollStream is one of the largest SIM vendors that you probably haven't heard of (at least in relation to some of the accounts from the likes of Aravo and Hiperos, among others). Yet like HICX, RollStream has quietly built a very strong list of accounts, including a number that GXS has brought to it as part of their relationship together (these include Comcast, Tesco and Owens & Minor, among others). Add to these a range of retailers, life sciences and other big name accounts that RollStream had previously and it's clear that their SIM client list is really every bit as impressive in the early stages of this market as anyone. But of course it's what these accounts are doing with the toolset that matters more than just listing them as accounts. (Please click here for the first post in this series.)

Thomas Kase discusses the Euro situation.

Currency Exposure: Can You Explain How You Are Prepared For a Euro Breakup to Your CFO? -- Whether or not you prefer the economic concept of adaptive expectations to rational expectations, it is still clear that financial actors in Europe (such as banks) are growing increasingly wary of lending across borders. According to Der Spiegel, "Germany's Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) insists that HypoVereinsbank keeps its money in Germany. When the parent bank, Unicredit in Milan, asks for an excessive amount of money to be transferred from the German subsidiary to Italy, BaFin intervenes."

Some goodies from Spend Matters PRO!

“Be Smart About” – Supplier Information Management Solutions -- [This piece was originally published on 6/27/12 by Thomas Kase.] This Spend Matters PRO "Be Smart About" series aims to give you a head start in preparing yourself and your company for modern SIM solutions. It covers what some of the best practices look like, and how to engage more effectively with solution providers and will even give you a list of firms to look at in Part 2 – with some insights into their strengths and potential caveats/concerns that should be explored in a selection process.

In consideration of ongoing risk management...

Where can Procurement Do More in the Area of Risk Management (Part 5)? -- In suggesting the most advanced area for procurement organizations to focus on to target supply risk, Novartis' Sammy Rashad believes that the "final frontier" is helping mitigate customer risks. Focusing on risks inherent to the customers is the most "innovative procurement involvement in risk management." Sammy suggests that "examples of this include collaborating with other client-facing functions (assist departments such as credit and accounts receivables with elements of the cash conversion cycle), getting involved across the entire value chain (apply natural hedging to mitigate exchange rates and volatility of demand), and building robust supply chains all the way to the end customer." (Click for the firstsecondthird, and fourth posts in this series.)

Procurement Olympics?! (A guest post courtesy of Verian)

Can Synchronized Purchasing and AP be an Olympic Event? -- Traditionally, most Purchasing and AP departments have not worked in harmony. AP is busy processing invoices and bristles when they get vendor calls, only to learn they are missing a PO, invoice and packing slip. Purchasing can get frustrated with AP when a clean vendor master file or accurate spending records are difficult to come by. It is ironic I thought of synchronized purchasing and AP while I watched the Olympic synchronized diving competition. During this event, two divers perform fairly simple but completely synchronized dives from a high diving platform. From the time they walk on the platform until they both hit the water far below, including all the flips, twists, pikes and turns in between, they move in total harmony. It was impressive to watch the competitors' flawless execution.

- Sheena Moore

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