Suplari launches new procurement and finance solution
Suplari, a data and insights company specialising in finance and procurement, has today launched a new solution which aims to provide “360-degree procurement planning” of suppliers, purchase orders, spending, and risk management in an attempt to increase savings and overall financial performance.
Known as Agile Performance Management, it hopes to provide the organisation with a clear vision of the cross-functionality of its strategic goals while also aiming to provide AI-based automated actions, results tracking, and rich collaboration tools to allow managers to achieve those goals.
Commenting on how organisations have transformed since the start of the pandemic and the effects this has had on procurement and finance, Nikesh Parekh, Chief Executive Officer of Suplari, said: “The rapid pace of business transformation since the beginning of the pandemic means that procurement and finance leaders need modern performance tools to hold company-wide teams accountable. Using clean data from all systems and AI-based insights, Agile Performance Management automates planning, analysing, and delivering results across the organisation.
Michael Shields, Director of Procurement at Qualtrics, believes Suplari’s new solution will improve the efficiency of data collection and procurement in his business. He said: "As the head of our procurement team, I'm held accountable for accurate spend projects and savings results across the company.
"Setting accurate business performance goals and holding other teams accountable to them was challenging because we had data in different systems, and there was little visibility and ability to collaboratively plan. With Suplari I can now see clean data, set clear goals, check daily progress, receive AI-based savings recommendations, and pro-actively collaborate cross-functionally to improve results. It's a game-changer”, he said.
Suplari says that the Agile Performance Management solution can be implemented “within four weeks” and enables leaders in the procurement industry to “plan, execute, and measure their initiatives”.
“Plan, measure, execute”
The Agile Performance Management aims to allow leaders to do three things with regards to their business initiatives: plan, measure, execute.
Plan: Create initiatives that are tied to clean, real-time data based on predictive insights.
- Performance and Goal Setting - set your savings goals for the year or quarter, and stay on top of your progress.
- Planner - plan your projects and pipeline of savings to meet that goal in an agile/responsive way.
- Executive Performance Dashboard - customisable dashboard for executive-level visibility and drive accountability.
Measure: Automated goal tracking enabled by normalised data across all integrated systems.
- KPI/Savings Calculators - dial-in savings calculation formulas for various types of savings (e.g. hard vs soft) with frequency (one time vs recurring)
- Savings Forecast - forward-looking savings forecast and amortisation with realised savings capture when the spend actually happens.
Execute: Suplari automatically executes plans leveraging automation for efficiency and consistency, and enables collaboration with team members.
- Automation - automate repetitive tasks and workflows, freeing up time for higher-value activities.
- Collaboration - Collaborate with business stakeholders, including alerts, notifications, and direct participation for faster decision making.
- Customisable workflows - best practices-based workflows that can further be customised.
Coupa Launches US$50 Million Ventures Fund
Operational resilience and agility. Following the events of the last twelve months, companies have focused on these strategic areas like never before. Some, as we’ve noted, have started to wonder whether this trend will continue post-pandemic—or will we go back to the same old supply chain? Not if Coupa Software has its way.
Last week, the company launched Coupa Ventures, a global fund that will invest US$50mn in early- and growth-stage companies that target business spend inefficiencies. “Coupa Ventures enables us to invest in a future where businesses and their suppliers can harness the power of their spend to constantly adapt, transform, and innovate”, said Rob Bernshteyn, Coupa’s Chairman and CEO.
What’s Business Spend Management (BSM)?
Let’s be honest, it doesn’t sound particularly sexy—it sounds like a subsection of the finance department. But business spend management, together with ERP (enterprise resource planning), CRM (customer relationship management) and HCM (human capital management) make up the core operating process of any company out there. When companies spend money, sign contracts, analyse supplier costs, take inventory or budget for the future, that’s BSM. Overall, business spend management is made up of three main areas: procuring materials, managing invoice, and handling expenses. Essentially, it’s the engine of the entire operation.
Why Change It Up?
According to Coupa, the next wave of BSM is now. It wasn’t always this way: in March of 2016, advisory giant Gartner claimed that BSM was dead. At that time, the firm was partly right. Companies couldn’t handle trillions of bits of data by themselves—and they were sinking as the waves of big data swept over their heads.
But recent developments have meant that BSM isn’t fated to die just yet. “The key to optimisation is data—and not just any data”, Coupa stated. The company has supported community intelligence, in which machine learning uses anonymised data from hundreds or thousands of client companies to suggest better spend tactics. This way, companies can get better insight into their suppliers, track supply chain disruptions, and investigate procurement alternatives.
This network effect is part of what makes Coupa Ventures so exciting. Said Eric Christopher, co-founder and CEO of Zylo, “We’re excited to join an expansive ecosystem of customers, suppliers, and partners”.
First Companies in the Ventures Portfolio
- Zylo, a leading SaaS management platform that helps companies manage cloud-based applications, offers visibility into what software is being used, how much is present, and how a company can optimise its software investments.
- SourceDay, a leading supply chain performance solution, bridges the gap between a company’s enterprise resource planning (ERP) and its supply chain network.
At SourceDay, Coupa’s investment is heralded as a chance for the company to really take off. “The investment from Coupa Ventures will...enable our joint customers to save money and leverage supplier performance as a competitive edge”, said Tom Kieley, SourceDay CEO. “We’re honoured to expand our relationship with the Coupa ecosystem”.
Looking ahead, Coupa will capitalise on community intelligence to help its partners make smarter spending decisions. “[Organisations will] place bets on which investments will quickly pay off to accelerate their growth and resilience in the post-pandemic economy”, said J.J. Freitag, senior vice president of Corporate Development at Coupa. “[And] we’re looking to back the best ideas across Europe and beyond to help businesses build back even stronger”.