Procurement leaders look beyond spend analytics to predictive analytics

Procurement leaders are increasingly looking beyond basic spend analytics towards predictive technology for insights into…...

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Procurement leaders are increasingly looking beyond basic spend analytics towards predictive technology for insights into trends in supplier behaviour, purchase order, invoice management and much more besides.

Benjamin Portusach, who runs his own successful procurement as a service business, says that procurement professionals today want more than just spend analytics. It’s all well and good knowing how much they have already spent, but what these employees want and need are insights into future spend and budget analysis.

In an interview with PYMNTS Magazine, Portusach notes that more businesses are turning to the relationship between purchaser and customer – the vendor portal – to streamline processes and engage in data sharing to their mutual benefit. Simultaneously, banks and ERP platforms are increasingly embracing API-powered integrations with procurement systems. These organisations are combining these systems to facilitate improved data sharing, which they regard as essential to helping businesses get a better picture of their current and future operations.

Two of the more obvious positive upshots of this for the supply chain is an automated data entry and automated purchase categorisation. At the same time, breakthrough technologies like Machine Learning can integrate information about purchase orders, payments and invoices, enabling streamlined reconciliations. As a result, purchases are more efficiently and accurately categorised, allowing managers to see how their procurement colleagues are spending company funds.

As digitisation and data sharing gains ever greater traction in the business world, analytics is expanding its capabilities. An example cited by Portusach is the ability of CFOs and controllers to gain insights of supplier habits from new analytics. This includes vendors backdating their invoices in a bid to get paid more quickly if they were slow to issue the invoice to begin with.

A recent study by The Hackett Group found that procurement leaders were increasingly using new predictive and prescriptive data analytics to look ahead at their spend operations over the next two years.

Nick Ford

Nick has over 30 years procurement experience in consulting, outsourcing and line roles within industry with international experience across many sectors and industries and led many procurement programs with blue chip organisations.

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