Integration: is it the most important word in procurement?
- 11 Oct 2017
We all know technology advancements changed the way we live and work, so the fact that integrated working should be at the heart of procurement’s success will come as no surprise. It’s no longer just about software and technology though; the word ‘integration’ is increasingly becoming recognized in terms of business processes and facilitating departmental collaboration and communication.
For procurement, we’ve identified 3 fundamental elements of integration that are critical to procurement and business success:
- An integrated business culture
Business success relies on a culture of good internal collaboration, so it is important for all departments to work closely together, which cannot be achieved without strong human connections across the organisation. Procurement needs to become (if it already isn’t) a much more consultative and strategic function to fully support business decisions. This ultimate goal relies on optimizing many crucial relationships between procurement and other key business functions.
- Integrated procurement software
A fully integrated Procurement software suite provides the procurement function with a holistic view of both purchase to pay and source to contract activities. Software such as our own Medius Spend Management promises procurement teams an enhanced user experience, faster implementation and higher user adoption with a joined-up view on spend data and supplier information, one familiar interface and a more straightforward implementation journey with a single vendor.
Through a single automated process from sourcing suppliers and managing contracts to purchasing, payment and analytics, a fully integrated software solution can bring new level of visibility and procurement control throughout the entire purchasing lifecycle.
- Integrated System
Having a fully integrated eProcurement system will provide clear benefits for the procurement team and for finance, but having that system work seamlessly with all the other back office and third-party data, can be a game changer for the organisation as a whole.
The single biggest road block to successful line of business software deployments such as procurement is integration. For example, at Medius we often get asked ‘will your software integrate with our back-office systems? How will the integration work?’ The answer is simple - to connect any eProcurement system with your ERP or third-party data systems, you need a reliable connection software as your middleware. An example is our own Medius Connect, which is an inhouse built integration module, offering out of the box adapters connecting any systems that clients wish to integrate with.
Integration no longer only affects the software and devices we use. To achieve business success, it is important for integration to be imbedded into the fabric of your organisation and allow everyone and everything to work together towards the same goals. You can read more in our guide: Integration - The most important word in procurement.