Integrated, unified, combined; Determine devotes a lot of real estate in our content and resources to the topic of getting everyone on the same page. Our Process Under Management approach is all about aligning your people, processes and data to maximize visibility and control of business information so you can achieve greater results. Integrating Purchasing and Payables, a Determine-sponsored PayStream report, presents more compelling facts around why you need to get P2P processes in sync.
Integration means lower costs and higher savings.
As the PayStream report points out, almost every organization is being tasked to do more with less these days. Without added headcount, efficiency is the only way to achieve desired gains. Integration equals efficiency; unified and streamlined workflows speed up the entire purchasing, invoice management and payment lifecycle chain (see graph below). Fewer steps (and hurdles) free people up to focus on more strategic work, or enable them to simply do more by working smarter.
Integration also creates better visibility into spend, so you can rein in mavericks, take advantage of discounts or other volume benefits, and increase contract compliance. Having purchasing and payables integrated also gives you a clearer budget management picture, which leads to a whole host of other advantages. Since many companies use different back-end technology for purchasing and finance, the key to a successful integration is having an airtight change management plan, and a strategically crafted implementation process.
Source: PayStream Advisors, 2017
Automating P2P is the key to integration.
Integrating Purchasing and Payables lays out the why / how / when that stakeholders need to consider to achieve true integration. Significant among those is P2P automation, and creating what PayStream (and Determine) call “an open and collaborative environment in back-office departments.” Because, like any system, the key to making it work is people. From getting buy-in at the start to fostering open communication between people, departments and suppliers, shared goals and real-time visibility into activity builds trust, which accelerates efficiency.
Leveraging procure-to-pay technology – especially cloud platform-based, like the Determine Cloud Platform – enables companies to achieve immediate results, but also look ahead. A streamlined integration needs to be scalable, as it gives organizations the flexibility to start with one office or location, and role out across geographies as needed. The other requirements to integrate purchasing and payables with P2P technology mentioned in the report all point to the need for a platform approach:
- Connects multiple systems, teams, and locations
- Builds control and safeguards between the two departments
- Enables communication
- Consolidates overlapping information
- Brings more spend under management
You can’t manage all that across an enterprise without a platform that provides a single source of shared data, Business Process Management, dynamic workflows and is easy to use.
There is a lot to be gleaned from Integrating Purchasing and Payables for companies of all sizes. For instance, somewhat surprisingly, companies in the $2 billion plus range are less likely to be integrated, but have a much greater need. That creates a compelling argument.
Wherever you are in your purchasing integration / alignment / unification process, we invite you to download this free report from PayStream Advisors.
We also have a number of other resources on the topic: