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About the Author
Marisol Buczynski Buchanan, CEO of Premikati, Inc. is passionate about procurement, specifically in the SMB space. She has been involved in the procurement industry in either strategic or executive roles for almost two decades. Most recently, Marisol and Premikati, have shaken up the industry by offering a version of Ariba Guided Buying and Invoicing to SMBs - providing access to the same robust software as large enterprises that is easy to implement, scalable, and best of all, simple to use. Marisol also serves as part of SAP Ariba’s Partner Advisory Board for the Procurement as a Purpose Workstream as well as sitting on the National Small Business Association Leadership Council. In her free time, Marisol is a self-taught chef and avid gardener.

Intelligent Spend Management: Why It Exists, and Why You Need It

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Intelligent Spend Management: Why It Exists, and Why You Need It

 

Between global sourcing initiatives, product lifecycle management, supplier diversity milestones, and more, the procurement operation in any sizable company is tasked with processing immense volumes of data.

 

And, with the immense popularity of lean and tech-oriented skill sets in the discipline, no data is more relevant to procurement than the things that impacts company spend.

 

The problem: data islands

 

Often, supply chain data is kept on systems that don’t talk with each other. Some systems may be deprecated, while others exist only on certain peoples’ machines.

 

In operations like this, the company is said to lack something called business intelligence–the ability to efficiently analyze data with technology and derive actionable information.

 

Introducing business intelligence to a company typically involves change management processes with long time horizons, affecting the bottom line. The growing pains required to become a business intelligence-enabled company may require a major culture shift, too, even while dropping large amounts of money on new ERP systems and consultants.

 

For those procurement operations that do have all their data efficiently accessible in one place, they’ve still only achieved half the battle. Approaching the data with informatics, or the science of how to use data, poses another challenge altogether.

 

Intelligent spend management: how it works

Thankfully, for small and medium-sized procurement operations, it doesn’t take a reverse auction guru, enterprise software wiz, and sourcing strategist all in one to enhance the unit’s business intelligence with technology. The traditional methods of enhancing business intelligence have been tailored for procurement professionals in a new, simplified process called Intelligent Spend Management.

 

First and foremost, Intelligent Spend Management (ISM) streamlines your software suite into a centralized hub. From there, ISM allows the supply chain professional to anticipate threats, understand their market, and work across business units to deliver efficiencies that were virtually impossible before.

 

Intelligent spend management: starting the conversation

 

With any change management process, the business needs executive buy-in for the initiative to be truly successful. Achieving that buy-in can be a challenge to procurement professionals, who may face pushback for introducing disruptive, new ideas.

 

Thanks to the presence of consulting companies specializing in the process, the conversations over how best to introduce ISM to one’s own business can take place in a guided, easy-to-understand manner.

 

Intelligent spend management is as much a philosophical approach to the procurement operation as it is a function of corporate business intelligence. 

 

Premikati is currently offering a free one month trial of the Premikati Marketplace for SAP Business Exchange members – learn more here.