The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Source-to-Pay: Habit No. 6
- The objective of deploying a procurement software comes to nothing if end-users are not excited about using it
- Before shortlisting a software, assess its suitability for different types of end users as well as suppliers
- The source-to-pay technology should be intuitive and easy to use
“We must act to seize opportunity, to make things happen.”
– Stephen R. Covey in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
You have carefully selected a source-to-pay (S2P) software. It seems to be a good fit for your organization. But is it easy to use?
The end objective of deploying a procurement software fails if end users bypass the technology and continue to rely on traditional, manual ways of purchasing things. Why? Because they find the software too complex to use.
After all, if people do not understand how to use the software, there is no point of having a software in the first place.
You want the end-users to engage with the procurement software and use it as the primary means for purchasing.
How can you ensure this?
By choosing a software that is easy and, perhaps, fun to use.
In this sixth installment of the source-to-pay series, we focus on end-users — people who raise the buying requisitions — and what they expect from any new technology.
User-first: The key criteria
Procurement organizations should aim to deploy a software that is user-first, one that is designed with the end-user in mind. Although this seems obvious, this aspect is often overlooked by enterprises during the vendor selection process.
Software companies employ developers who specialize in writing codes and checking the functionality. For them, functionality of the software is the most important factor. And so, very often, a business software is not user-friendly.
With the advent of consumer tech in the last 20 years or so, it has become vital that software should be easy and fun to use.
Therefore, procurement leaders responsible for source-to-pay efficiency should ask: ‘Do my people like this software? And will they be enthusiastic about using it?’
What you should consider while choosing S2P software
When shortlisting a source-to-pay software, do not think merely about users in procurement or ad-hoc users who may use it occasionally. Instead, think of the bigger picture and involve a wide range and different types of end-users.
For example, check if the software is suitable for the finance team that has to pay invoices. Will it meet the requirements of data analysts in running reports or C-suite executives looking at the dashboards?
Do not forget your suppliers in this process. Will your suppliers be happy to use the software? Because in the case of suppliers, the stakes can be high.
The bottom line
End-users now have high expectations of technology. The S2P software must be intelligent and able to understand the specific requirements, depending on the type of the end user.
And therefore, you must clearly understand your requirements in the software selection process.
Selection becomes easy when you know what you are looking for.
Ask yourself: ‘What should be the important things on the shopping list when delivering the most effective S2P software to the user community?’
Turn ideas into action. Talk to GEP.
GEP helps enterprise procurement and supply chain teams at hundreds of Fortune 500 and Global 2000 companies rapidly achieve more efficient, more effective operations, with greater reach, improved performance, and increased impact. To learn more about how we can help you, contact us today.
Paul has spent over 30 years in diverse roles in the world of technology and was involved in the development of procurement software even before the advent of the internet.
Paul is GEP’s resident product evangelist who helps strategize and execute marketing plans for GEP’s full range of cutting-edge procurement and supply chain solutions.LET'S TALK