Wake-up calls for mid-market organizations!

How do you make everyone believe that this transformation journey is for betterment?

Karthik Rama

Wake-Up Calls for Mid-Market Organizations!

Procure-to-Pay (P2P) solutions have been around for a long time now. There has been a paradigm shift in how P2P solutions have evolved over the years. You (the mid-market segment) contribute a major chunk to the overall structure of the economy. It is in the best interest of the mid-market organizations and P2P solution providers to utilize these P2P solutions to better govern and manage their spend; especially getting a grip on tail spend.

Wake-Up Call #1: P2P solutions are only beneficial to big enterprises who have a procurement function

P2P picked up as a solution in the mid to late 90s. It was sold as an extension to existing ERP-based large organizations with high volumes of transactions. P2P brought in a new look and feel as it was a better user interface and friendlier to use.

Below are the main reasons for adopting P2P in these large enterprises.

1.            Savings - Soft and Hard

2.            Spend Optimization

3.            Digitalization & Process Automation

4.            Drive Governance and Policy

I don’t see a reason why the best practices that are leveraged to get the best out of the P2P solutions need to be restricted to big enterprises with a procurement function.

As a mid-market organization, you are still striving to get the best out of your resources at a reasonable time and cost to run the business better. Your focus is on establishing and maintaining growth and customer satisfaction.

To achieve the above, managing the spend gets all the more important and to have a process which is the best in class.

P2P solutions are the answer to many of your long-standing questions.

·        How do you govern and manage spend as you grow globally across sites?

·        How do you improve visibility of spend to review purchasing patterns and behavior?

·        How do you enforce spend limits of operational resources? 

·        How do you decrease the redundant time spent on invoice exception processes?

·        How do you reduce time on small buys that consume a long time?

·        How do you achieve procurement best practices without a procurement function?

·        How do you access deals and pricing that might not otherwise be available?

Wake-Up Call #2: Mid-market organizations cannot afford a P2P solution

Gone are the days of huge license and infrastructural costs. With the introduction of cloud-based P2P solutions, mid-market organizations can now afford a P2P solution. You do not need expensive on-site hardware and skilled staffing to maintain and upkeep the software. The cost of cloud-based solutions takes into account the number of users of the system and covers all future enhancements, improvements, and upgrades with minimal hassle to the mid-market enterprise. Now you know why a cloud-based solution is also called “Software as a Service” (SaaS).

Wake-Up Call #3: P2P is too complicated for a mid-market enterprise

Old school to new school buying - we can convert the average requisitioner into a buyer with the P2P cloud-based solution. It is possible due to the P2P solution’s Amazon-like buying experience for the users.

Minimal to no training required; it is all the more information for today’s solutions to increase the expectations of usability, functionality and seamless device support.

Now that you’ve have woken up, let’s talk about how to get started.

1.   Complete a business case to understand the savings opportunity     

This is a relatively straightforward activity; extract value and savings from implementing a P2P solution. 

Things to remember:

·        Avoid double-counting of savings

·        Be conservative or practical in your estimates

·        Don’t forget soft savings or intangible savings

2.  Understanding of supplier enablement strategies

There must be a surge in the ERP suppliers with multiple acquisitions and rebranding over the years.

Garbage in, garbage out! You need to be sure of which suppliers to include in the new P2P solution. Many transformations have yielded in decreased user adoption as the supplier database had many duplicates or non-availability of suppliers. 

3.  Be “Fly-Ready” - your organization should be ready to undergo this procurement transformation to start realizing the savings

·        Is your organization ready for such a transformation?

·        Who are the change enablers and change disruptors?

·        Who are the influencers?

·        How do you make everyone believe that this transformation journey is for betterment?

Last things to keep in mind in addition to the above are to not consider the implementation of this P2P solution as a cure to all your external spend pain areas. Change management is key; you need to ensure all the right people are involved to make the implementation successful and a smooth transformation for everyone. The icing on the cake would be the easy-to-use P2P solution which would optimize the rate of user adoption across your organization.

Involve key suppliers and bring them up to speed. Help them understand their role in this transformation and the benefit they will get through this solution through email campaigns and supplier network summits. 

Now, stay awake!

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