Purchasing Insight

Purchase to Pay, Purchasing & Procurement Process, Electronic Invoicing

One of the key reasons to implement tight controls within purchase to pay is to ensure that people can’t steal. But when I talk to businesses about the need to mitigate against the risk of fraud in finance departments – about how it’s possible for staff to collude with suppliers or to falsify information for personal gain – I hear this response again and again: “But who would do that?”

What they’re actually saying is: “We’re all trustworthy here. I don’t know anyone that would do such a thing.” But regrettably,  the truth is a little different. The reality is that there are only two types of people – those that cheat and those that cheat more. continue reading…

Today, Richard Manson from CloudTrade explains how EDI programmes can be transformed to extend their reach.

EDI is nothing new. In fact it has been around since the 1970’s. So why do most organisations that venture down this route still find it so hard to on-board suppliers? It’s not just the number of suppliers that are able and willing to adopt EDI, but also the time it takes to get suppliers on-board.

To get an insight into the issues, let’s first step through the typical supplier adoption process. continue reading…

I have a great deal of respect for Gartner and pay close attention to their insights and futurology. Despite that, I get a great sense of satisfaction on the occasions when I see what’s what before them.

It’s not news to me that Nipendo are cool but it’s great to see their coolness recognized by a firm as august as Gartner. Nipendo have been named as a “Cool Vendor” in Gartner’s new report “Cool Vendors in Integration, 2014” by Keith Guttridge, Massimo Pezzini, Paolo Malinverno & Jess Thompson. It means that, in the authors’ opinion, Nipendo are “Innovative, Impactful and Intriguing”. continue reading…

The 2014 Hackett Key Issues report on procurement priorities reveals some interesting trends and it’s backed up with some highly insightful statistics and analysis. The headline issue is the most interesting. The report shows that cost saving, as a driver for procurement, is diminishing in importance compared to a more strategic agenda. That might be news to some but it confirms what many of us have known for some time.

For a more in depth insight on the report, I spoke to David Rennie in London, European Practice Leader, Procurement & Supply Chain Transformation at The Hackett Group and he explained some of the findings in the report.

Hackett’s survey shows that cost saving ranks a mere 4th in the priority list for procurement. Upstaged by the need to expand influence and the need to innovate, cost saving is a relatively minor priority.

Hackett Chart

 

The report reflects a maturity of thinking in the procurement profession and moreover it shows that procurement is falling in line with broader commercial objectives of business.

Pete Loughlin can be found on twitter @peteloughlin

Today we’re delighted to welcome Angus Craig from Craig Hall Consulting who shares some interesting perspectives on Mergers, acquisitions and supply chain finance.

The last year has seen some significant changes in technology and the economic environment for supply chain finance (SCF). Together, these changes will dramatically affect the SCF market. Although there will be many winners, there will also be some losers.

Purchasing Insight has been charting the changes in technology for some time. In February this year for example, Pete Loughlin observed that Taulia had automated or removed the cost of Know Your Customer (KYC) from their traditional SCF package, thereby opening up the market. In September last year he commented that Crossflow Payments offer their EDI platform for free, encouraging suppliers to switch. All of these technology changes have made the SCF proposition more compelling and have increased the number and value of transactions.

The changes in the underlying economic environment need to be viewed in two separate ways: those economic trends that encourage customers and suppliers to adopt a SCF solution and those that affect the intermediaries that offer it. continue reading…

The soundtrack to my formative years was the Sex Pistols, The Jam, The Clash, Deaf School, Gregory Isaacs and Aswad. It was fun that the generation I was a part of had music that was revolutionarily different from previous generations yet there were still those older people who wished we would all just calm down and listen to Bing Crosby and Doris Day as though Elvis, the Beatles, The Doors and Pink Floyd had never happened in the preceding two decades.

Punk rock had woken an older generation and reminded them of how much they enjoyed their heyday. And this is exactly the impression I got today when I read that the International Chamber of Commerce is to rationalize the language used to describe supply chain finance. continue reading…

I had the pleasure of attending the formal launch of “Electronic Invoicing, the next steps towards digital government” on 30 April.

The report is a welcome indication of the seriousness with which the issue is taken in government. It is also a sensible document which does not fall into the trap of underestimating the complexities of the subject. I particularly liked that, although it favours some form of overt or covert mandating of eInvoicing, it does not mandate any particular technical means of achieving this.

Inevitably, when reading the document, questions arise and I explore a couple of them here. These are not intended to be criticisms of the work of the inquiry team, more ‘thoughts occasioned by’ the document and also as indications of some of the difficult issues facing them. continue reading…