Procurement departments can run into serious issues without the proper procure-to-pay tools. Lacklustre procurement strategies can bring unnecessary risk, dark purchasing, detrimental data inaccuracies, harmful supplier issues and a more drawn-out procure to pay cycle. Procurement teams no longer need to be bogged down by wasted time, overlooked opportunities, and poorly allocated resources due to decentralised and ineffective procurement planning and execution. Rather, they can maximise a future-minded procure to pay process flow with procure to pay software. Here’s how procurement professionals can select the right solution for their needs.
A next-Level e-procurement planning software solution
Before organisations choose their procure to pay solution, they must review their plan in order to understand how – specifically – they can optimise procurement. Acquisition processes should involve the coordination of all relevant personnel to construct a plan and execute it. As such, procurement departments should develop a holistic strategy for not only acquisition but full procure to pay optimisation – including after purchasing. The following should be considered and addressed in a centralised manner:
- justification of acquisition
- budget approvals
- applicable laws and regulations review
- recognition of all personnel
- formation of the acquisition process per governmental and organisational requirements
- post-acquisition management.
Leading-edge, cloud based procure to pay platforms – such as Contract Insight® – unify and centralise the tasks mentioned above on one central system. Procurement professionals can transform their processes with automated and swift approval routing, rules-based collaboration, intelligent workflow automation, task escalation, seamless purchase order management and e-sourcing process integration, and much more.
A user-friendly request management process
The procure to pay process can start off strong with a procure to pay system that provides a diverse array of request options. With advanced procurement applications – such as Contract Insight® – requestors can fill out a standard requisition form that triggers a comprehensive form review process that determines if a request should include a bid process, if an existing contract can be leveraged instead, or if a new purchase order should be created. Be sure to select a procurement software solution that provides this level of helpful oversight!
Trusted procure to pay applications also offer the help of an intelligent request wizard tool. This functionality helps users swiftly address a series of dynamic questions. Subsequently, the system can decide on the type of RFx that will be initiated based on configured organisational guidelines. Additionally, the wizard helps users determine if they can leverage an existing contract.
Organisations can seamlessly draft a new request record. This record can be revised, edited and reviewed throughout the contract workflow. After that, the configured, assigned user for budget review can receive an alert to undergo the budget review. Finally, additional bid requirements are assembled before a bid is formalised and published. Be sure to maximise procure to pay software solutions that centralise request gathering and subsequent bids.
Bid process centralisation and simplification
Bids can be advertised publicly or by invite-only with state-of-the-art procure to pay software – directly from the platform. Seamless integration between a procurement system and a bid listing service can provide a stage for healthy competition between potential vendors. Consequently, buying organisations can generate more value from awards, and vendors are seamlessly connected with relevant buying organisations.
After bid advertisement, potential vendors can ask pertinent questions. Helpful question and answer tools with leading-edge procure to pay software can assist organisations in remaining connected with vendor prospects.
Question and answer due dates can be configured so that vendors are only allowed to submit questions in a time frame desired by the organisation advertising a bid. Once that configured and agreed upon date has passed, submissions are no longer accepted by the procure to pay solution. Alerts can be configured for when questions come in as well as when due dates are looming.
Vendor scorecards and response ratings with trusted procure to pay applications can keep buying organisations confident that they select the vendor that is most tailored to their unique needs. Oversight of bid rating weight allows organisations to value specific criteria over others when reviewing responses and scoring bids. Easy-to-read bid tabulation reports can be maximised to integrate pricing and scoring line items for a quick and comprehensive overview of bids.
Next come vendor awards. After the winning vendor is selected, an email can be provided to that winning vendor via the procurement system’s sourcing record page. Pre-configured email templates can streamline the process even more. Furthermore, buying organisations can send emails to vendors that were not selected informing unawarded vendors that a different vendor has been agreed upon while thanking them for their contributions.
Once the award stage is finished, organisations can begin the contract lifecycle process seamlessly. A new record can be created or the procure-to-pay record can be synced with an existing contract record. Either way, the process can be performed easily via the sourcing record page.
For advanced contract record creation, contract management AI can assist organisations in importing contracts into their procure to pay software systems. User-friendly data extraction intelligently maps and categorises data. The inclusion of key dates, contract data, and clauses is expedited – giving organisations control and visibility to search, report, compare and categorise contracts, risk and risk exposure.
End-to-end procure to pay software oversight
With holistic and AI-based procure to pay software solutions, organisations can tackle a vast array of procurement challenges, including:
- task management, intelligent workflow overnight, vendor administration, vendor performance analysis, and contract negotiation processes
- spend analysis – including contract amounts, budgets, budget approvals, vendor invoicing, fiscal year spend tracking and oversight, payment processing, and purchase order control
- the management of operations such as intelligent automated contract workflow, vendor and supplier relationship oversight, and comprehensive procurement analytics management
- meeting (and ideally exceeding) KPIs for vendor value and supplier obligation enhancement, contract benefit realisation, contract workflow escalation and data-driven contract management decisions and processes.
Enjoy full procure to pay optimisation
Now that you know how to tackle procure to pay challenges with a leading procure to pay software, it’s time to introduce the best of procure to pay software vendors. The solution for your needs is Contract Insight from Four Business Solutions.
Contract Insight is acclaimed, scalable, web-based and integrated contract management, sourcing and procure to pay software celebrated as a pioneering system for organisations in a variety of industries within the public and private sectors.
Contract Insight from Four
Contract Insight is a cloud-hosted (SaaS) or deployed (on-premise) contract management solution. The acclaimed platform is trusted by thousands of professionals for their contract management, legal document management, procurement and sourcing needs. Used by many Fortune 500 companies, Contract Insight gives you real time visibility into your contracts. It doesn’t just shore up your security; it will help you meet contract compliance regulations, centralise your contract management and improve your overall contract administration process.
For more information, contact John O’Brien, CEO at Four Business Solutions, global business consultants and software integrators providing business processes improvements in Finance, Supply Chain and Operations, across a broad range of industries.