What to Look for in Procurement Software Solutions
Procurement software covers a lot of bases, and there are many facets to procurement management that could potentially be streamlined and automated if you haven’t done so already.
Even if you are using software, such as spreadsheet software, often, that software can be greatly improved, provided that you have the right procurement software solutions at your disposal. Every procurement and purchasing department is different, and thus, everyone has a different set of needs and standards.
What one company needs in procurement management, another may not; however, procurement software trends generally lean in the same direction. If you’ve been thinking about upgrading your efficiency and perhaps automating your processes, whether it be for transparency or for collaboration, read on to learn more about procurement software and its features and what you should look for in a suite or in a singular solution.
Procurement Software Solutions: What Is Procurement Software?
There are two functions that procurement software essentially performs: centralization and automation, both in the areas of purchasing materials and goods and replenishment of inventory. You’ll find that most procurement software is called procure-to-pay software. This means that the software is solely focused on the procurement of material assets, rather than SaaS (Software as a Service). Because centralization and automation are incredibly broad topics, the area underneath the umbrella that procurement software solutions covers is exceedingly large.
Procurement Software Solutions: What Does eProcurement Application Software Do?
In general, all procurement software will have the basic functionality to be able to:
- Manage suppliers
- Have inventory management
- Manage purchase orders
- Run analytics
However, these are fundamental needs, and most managers working in procurement will want their software to be more capable and streamlined than that. Most suites will also include documentation support, such as RFQs and RFPs and contract management. You may also want a suite that has invoicing automation and supply chain management integration.
Some businesses also prefer their software to be highly customizable, especially if you’re a type of business that has changing needs from one year to the next. Additionally, some procurement departments also like ERP platforms and other accounting software that have procurement features built-in, so there is more of a focus on the financials. Many also insist that procurement software solutions be part of a cloud-based model.
Procurement Software Solutions: What Are the Benefits?
The benefits of using procurement software solutions are many.
Whether you are using one tool, such as managing vendors and strategic suppliers, or using an entire suite, you’re helping to improve your workflow overall.
Some of the most prominent benefits of procurement software include:
- Lower costs. Having visibility into your spend greatly improves your ability to run sourcing events and thereby control or lower the budget.
- Simplified processes. Streamlining processes that were once performed manually improves efficiency and gives you more time to work on other tasks.
- Improved accuracy. When your data is automated, it is more accurate and trustworthy.
- Electronic catalogs. When you use electronic catalogs, you have increased visibility for what you’re ordering, as well as pricing. This makes an apples-to-apples comparison more simplified and helps save you time and money. Not to mention, internal customers can find what they need faster and at a good price.
If you would like to hear more about procurement software solutions or would like to request a demo, get in touch with us today at EC Sourcing Group by giving us a call at 973-936-9672 to set up an appointment.