As procurement continues to elevate its role in solving today’s biggest challenges, procurement teams need proven applications that deliver continuous innovation, industry expertise, and a laser focus on user experience.
Long a leader in facilitating the transformation of procurement, SAP has also been named a Leader in the IDC MarketScape: Worldwide SaaS and Cloud-Enabled Procurement Applications 2023 Vendor Assessment.*
What’s most gratifying about this latest report is that SAP is being recognized for the significant progress we’ve made since the last IDC MarketScape for procurement applications, released in 2021. We’ve worked hard to evolve our vision, focusing on delivering a complete suite of solutions that enables our customers and their trading partners to manage spend with total visibility – while never losing sight of the people who use these solutions.
From sourcing and supplier networks to supplier relationship management, contract lifecycle management, spend analytics, procure-to-pay, and sustainability, SAP provides a full suite of solutions that help businesses solve problems at every point in the procurement process. And, as noted within the IDC MarketScape report, “SAP Ariba solutions are strongly positioned to help companies administer spend that spans complex events, direct and indirect, services, and CAPEX.”
The report also cites these strengths:
- SAP Ariba is a mature, established, and trusted brand. Brand perception is high, and users expressed that the integration with SAP ERP and supply chain management products is a compelling feature.
- The guided buying capability and the guided sourcing capability for SAP Ariba Sourcing were cited by all reference clients as extremely useful. One client reference even referred to the capabilities as “lovely.” SAP has continued to innovate in this space with multiple enhancements and next-generation offerings currently in the works.
- SAP’s exceptional industry expertise, particularly in fields such as energy and natural resources, banking, chemicals, and automotive, is cited as a differentiator by multiple client references. SAP’s experience and offerings in the direct sourcing space drives significant buyer interest.
True to Our Roots
Procurement transformation is nothing new to SAP. It’s in our DNA. The electronic catalogs and material requirements planning processes that changed the game started here. Additionally, SAP Business Network has revolutionized the way goods are bought and sold. It is used by more buyers and sellers to connect and collaborate across procurement, supply chain, logistics, and asset management than any other network on the planet.
Committed to Innovation
For SAP, innovation is about assessing the business environment and listening to our customers, then responding with powerful tools to help them combat their business challenges. Building on an established, trusted product portfolio and clear road map, we continue to deliver innovations that help organizations address the procurement challenges of today and prepare for tomorrow.
Here are two procurement innovations we’re introducing this year, along with a sneak preview of an innovation we have in the works:
- The next evolution of guided buying: The guided buying capability in SAP Ariba solutions is the gold standard for purchases of goods and services. Its next evolution provides a buying experience that is personalized for today’s professional and casual buyers and their roles. It is predictive, leveraging artificial intelligence to offer suggestions for specific work roles as well as intelligent recommendations to help them make the right decisions and weigh the sustainability and environmental impact of their decisions. Many of the capabilities will be included within the guided buying capability this year, as well as in future releases. Watch a demo.
- A new category management solution: Today, category management consists of highly manual processes, leaving almost no time for category managers to develop or implement effective strategies. Our new category management solution, which we’ll roll out this year, provides actionable market intelligence and category insights. It empowers category managers and procurement professionals to make strategic category decisions for direct and indirect spending. Additionally, it offers intuitive scenario analysis to help visualize opportunities. Watch a demo.
- Total spend reporting: While we can’t reveal too much right now, stay tuned to hear more about what we have in store to enable total spend visibility for your business.
Focused on Users
Every person across the procure-to-pay process has a different role to play. We’ve made it our mission to understand the needs and priorities of every user persona and to deliver unique, intuitive tools that each can use to reach their goals. For example, an employee doing material requirements planning (MRP) for the procurement of direct materials will have a different experience than someone purchasing a laptop or managing contingent labor.
Risk Management and Sustainability
Given the supply chain disruptions of the past few years, business leaders understand the importance of risk management. In fact, in a 2022 Economist Impact survey of 430 C-suite level executives sponsored by SAP, respondents said risk reduction was the second most important area to focus on to deliver increased value in procurement. In the same survey, nearly a quarter of the executives identified sustainability and environmental, social, and governmental (ESG) concerns among the top priorities for organizational risk.
Social responsibility legislation is only adding to the pressure. For example, Lieferkettensorgfaltspflichtengesetz (LkSG) is an act that took effect in Germany this year. It requires companies to report on the ability of their risk management system to address violations in their supply chain to the German government no later than April 2024.
Businesses need a single source of truth across the entire supply base to support risk-aware core processes. SAP innovations can help facilitate risk management and sustainability requirements with the newly enhanced SAP Ariba Supplier Risk solution and SAP Business Network, along with additional extensions to address company-specific requirements.
Delivering Solutions for the Future
Procurement has changed significantly in the last two decades. SAP is pleased to be recognized as a leader in driving this change, and we remain committed to delivering next-generation applications that help our customers transform their business for continued success.
Baber Farooq is senior vice president and head of Market Strategy for SAP Procurement Solutions.
*“IDC MarketScape: Worldwide SaaS and Cloud-Enabled Procurement Applications 2023 Vendor Assessment” March 2023, IDC #US48785722