Why Do Procurement Teams Need Access to Specifications?
Specifications are, in a sense, a contract between a company and its suppliers of how something is made and the standards it needs to meet. It’s the DNA-level of data needed to make a product, potentially containing hundreds of data points in a single product or packaging specification.
Typical ERP software, scheduling software, invoice management systems, and legacy purchasing management systems don’t offer spec-level functionality. This not only leaves potential gaps in the procurement system, but it can also affect a company’s spend analysis and its attempts to reduce costly expenses with data-driven insights.
The State of Procurement
Procurement professionals have a lot to juggle these days; they need to source sustainable products and packaging, deal with increasing product varieties, and manage more suppliers than ever — all while focusing on spend management best practices.
With the global nature of modern supply chains, it’s critical that procurement professionals better manage supplier relationships. While management systems like business intelligence software and ERP software exist, they fundamentally miss the biggest pain point when it comes to purchasing: the ability to manage specification data. Download our eBook on Why Specification Data Management is the Future of Supply Chain to learn more.
The Importance of Specifications in Procurement Management Processes
Without specification management, it’s virtually impossible for procurement teams to hold suppliers accountable and easily go to bid. The key to improving supplier management is to tie specification data to a supplier, creating a digital thread of knowledge through your supply chain. By tying everything to a specification - for example, quality management and contract management - and then linking that specification to a supplier, every piece of data is connected and only a few clicks away at all times.
A procurement cloud solution means no more searching through spreadsheets, PDFs, or shared drives. When all of this data is linked, it becomes easy for teams to put together a procurement plan and even establish a selection process for new suppliers.
Specright is a powerful software solution designed to leverage your spec data to bring better management solutions to procurement teams. Specright is truly in a software category of its own; take a look at how Specright is helping to reshape the supply chain using data analytics, artificial intelligence, and top procurement features that legacy systems don’t offer.
Grimmway Farms Takes Control of Packaging
As Grimmway Farms expanded the brands in its portfolio, each addition made managing packaging production difficult. Learn how Grimmway Farms used Specright to take control of packaging specs that resulted in time and cost savings.
Take Action in Specright
Easily Track Supplier Performance
With Specright, our out-of-the-box reporting enables you to create supplier reports and dashboards in just a few clicks. For example, you can run a report showing all suppliers in-progress to tailor your follow-ups or chart all of your suppliers by geography.
When purchasing teams only do high-level vendor management such as contract management and strategic sourcing, they miss the bigger picture of what’s happening throughout the supply chain. That's likely why procurement organizations are starting to place a greater focus on creating supplier scorecards.
However, the information needed to create a supplier scorecard is not readily available in most companies. With a specification data management platform, procurement teams and project managers can easily trace quality issues, understand which suppliers make which products, and even track pricing over time to make sure suppliers are performing as expected.
With Specright’s Supplier Scorecard capability, you gain visibility and control into supplier performance so you can hold partners accountable and prevent issues from escalating. Grow your business network and improve supplier collaboration simply by using the data you already have but never had an easy way to track and link.
Manage Your Supplier Network
Specright makes it easy for you to manage supplier documentation and processes so you can focus less on the paperwork and more on the partnership. Specright empowers your existing purchasing software, workflow management, and other software solutions to allow each to maximize its ROI.
Easily onboard new suppliers with our digital workflows and ensure the accuracy of information. You can even restrict what suppliers see within Specright using basic permissioning capabilities.
Automate Procurement Processes
Many typical management processes, including the purchasing process, can also be automated in Specright, ensuring compliance and making it easier for procurement professionals to focus on higher-value work. For example, procurement teams can easily perform data audits to ensure the right specifications are being produced. Teams can also automate requests for supplier documents and set expiration dates to documents and contracts so new documents are automatically requested before they expire.
Report and Drive Sustainability
More and more procurement professionals are being asked to report on the sustainability of the products they buy. With Specright, it’s easy for purchasing teams to report on progress and even provide proactive recommendations on raw materials that can be substituted to drive sustainability.
This higher level of business intelligence can also be used to support financial management, purchase order approval processes, facilities management, inventory management, and contract lifecycle management — all of which can help you reach your sustainability goals.
Requests for Proposals, Bids, and Purchase Requisitions
Procurement teams today find themselves needing to go to bid more - and faster - than ever. Whether it’s responding to events that disrupt global supply chains, the need to source more sustainable products, packaging, and raw materials, or being asked by supply chain management to find a better path to expense management, the ability to bid quickly is critical.
With Specright, purchasing teams can quickly select specifications or finished goods, select the suppliers from whom they want to request a quote, and trigger a bid within minutes - all from our cloud-based procurement solution. Furthermore, the vendor and supplier community can respond to the bid and ask questions within Specright, adding collaboration software to Specright’s list of functionalities.
It shouldn’t take months to prepare a bid; with Specright Exchange, simply select the specs you want to bid, the suppliers you want to participate, and launch your RFP. With a simplified process, you can save time preparing the bid and save your suppliers time by sending accurate specs the first time.
Better Collaborate Across Departments
For collaborating across teams, purchasing, quality, packaging, product development, and operations need to be on the same page. Many companies still invest in a mix of contract management software, risk management tools, learning management systems, lifecycle management software, project management software, accounting software, and general supply chain management software. These tools typically have no way to interact with each other to seamlessly share data, particularly at the spec level.
With Specright, teams move from a decentralized source of information - relying on each department to manage their critical data - to a single source of truth. By centralizing data and making it digitally available, across any device, procurement teams can cut down on requests for information from other teams, and other teams can easily find information that purchasing would typically hold.
Better Collaborate Across Suppliers and Vendors
We hear it all the time: suppliers in certain countries such as China have difficulty accessing procurement software solutions of procurement management systems due to firewalls. At Specright, our customers are successfully using our spec management suite around the world. Specright’s built-in metrics and conversion capabilities also make it easy to ensure specifications don't get lost in translation.
Why Specification Data Management Is The Future Of Supply Chain™
In this eBook, we discuss the evolution of supply chain data and how professionals ranging from packaging to procurement can leverage data to drive business outcomes.