Companies are turning increasingly to technology to deliver efficiencies and ultimately improve profitability. One area that technology is thriving in, especially in larger companies, is eProcurement. Finance and procurement teams have sought to use technology to deliver solutions to traditionally labour-intensive roles and leverage the processes to give them better control and a competitive advantage.
When considering an eProcurement, and indeed any, system there are three main areas that need to be taken into consideration, these are:
One of the most important considerations is what outcomes are ultimately required from using an eProcurement system. This should start with an honest evaluation of the current sourcing, contract and supplier management situation and all its outcomes, both good and perhaps bad. The list of current outcomes can then be worked backwards to establish what processes are in place. If indeed there are any at all. This will then clearly show up what is working and what can be improved upon.
From this starting position it’s possible to then work out what all the desired outcomes are in order to deliver the best results for the company. The outcomes will be delivered by processes linked to various functions and features, which will range from being simple to use to more complex and complicated to use.
A comparison of the eProcurement solutions available will clarify which ones are best suited to deliver them. eProcurement systems have been designed by experts to make the processes effective and efficient to deliver the optimal outcomes.
The budget for an eProcurement system is important for any business and the expected Return On Investment (ROI) will be a major factor in the decision making process. A business may want everything, but if they don’t have the budget they may have to select only certain parts of a system that deliver the best value to them. The CapEx and OpEx budgets will have to be broken down to calculate a total cost of ownership to fully understand the potential return.
Arguably the most important consideration of the three. It’s all very well having an all singing all dancing eProcurement system that can deliver all these desirable outcomes if the people that are required to use it won’t use it properly.
The reasons why people either won’t use or don’t want to use a system may be varied. However, it’s up to the company to make sure that any objections, read excuses, are dealt with in a positive way to get everyone on board.
Ultimately, it’s the users adoption of the system to get the best out of it that will determine the success of the project to introduce an eProcurement system to the business. You can have the best system in the world, but if it’s not used effectively it’s a waste of money.
Taking the time to consider the three factors above will help to determine the most suitable eProcurement system. For many companies it’s an investment of time and money and will take a lot of planning to ensure the best delivery method to get the desired outcomes.
oboloo has been designed specifically for SMEs to be an intuitive self-service eProcurement SaaS that enables businesses to be supplier smart through sourcing, contract, supplier and savings management. www.oboloo.com