Where to Start if You’re New to Procurement Sourcing Solutions
There are many people who are not new to procurement and sourcing and its role in the supply chain but may be new to sourcing solutions and software. Procurement sourcing software can help make things easier, boost your team’s efficiency, and perhaps increase your quality of life.
Once you get past the learning curve and become used to the procurement management process flow, having the right type of software can impact your bottom line, improve collaboration, and affect your whole procurement management process positively.
Read on to learn how to get started with procurement sourcing solutions and what to look for in software.
Procurement Sourcing Solutions: What Is Procurement Management?
The goal of procurement management is to manage and optimize the spend of the organization. Unfortunately, if you’re managing it from an “analog” style or by hand, you may not be catching every last detail, especially when it comes to total addressable spend.
Procurement management also involves sourcing goods and services from vendors and suppliers. Many people may think that sourcing and procurement are the same things; however, sourcing is a part of procurement, just as procurement is part of the supply chain.
When talking about procurement sourcing solutions, sourcing is part of the overall big picture of procurement. These objectives of procurement management also involve requisitions, inspections, reconciliations, and expediting. If you’re wondering, “why is procurement management important,” it is one of the most important pieces of the supply chain.
One must also be aware of the ethics in procurement management, which involves avoiding any conflict of interest, treating all parties fairly, being impartial, and being transparent. Ideally, the right software can help with that.
Procurement Sourcing Solutions: What to Look for in Procurement Software
As procurement and sourcing are two separate things, you may be looking at two different types of software, or you may be able to find a software suite that covers all the bases for your company. When it comes to procurement alone, you want to make sure your software has:
- Asset management and inventory
- Billing management
- Vendor management
- Purchase request and purchase order management
- Supplier relationship management
- Catalog and order management
- Financial accounting integration
It’s also a plus if you can run payroll and other reports from the software. When it comes to software that has procurement sourcing features, what you’re looking for will be a little different.
Procurement Sourcing Solutions: What Should Sourcing Software Have?
Strategic sourcing will look slightly different for each company. However, there are some key features you should look for. If you’re completely new to procurement software solutions, it may be beneficial to research current trends in strategic procurement management to see what may suit you best. In any case, you want to make sure you have:
- eRFx management. This offers you the ability to automate and process RFQs, RFPs, and so on.
- Centralization. This allows for collaboration with you and your team and keeps your suppliers on the same page.
- Side-by-side comparison tools. This allows you to compare supplier’s bids, quotes, and proposals, so you can make better decisions.
- Award optimization. If you award to more than one supplier, this feature can save time in finding the best award mix for your particular situation.
- Reporting and analytics. Knowing where your spend is going is vital, and you need the right software to do it.
- Data management. One of the most important things in procurement sourcing solutions is having all of your data in a centralized location.. This can be especially important if employees leave the team and you’re trying to find something important. This goes hand-in-hand with centralization.
Having integration is also helpful. If you’re able to integrate your software with systems such as EPP and BI, this is a plus. Today, most firms utilize an open API Architecture so that data can flow easily from one solution to the next.
To hear more about or to request a software demo, contact EC Sourcing Group today at 973-936-9672. We want to help you change the way you think about procurement.