SCOPE Supply Chain Conference; Procurement Summit Leveraging Data for Intelligence

Last week, I had the pleasure of attending the SCOPE Supply Chain Conference and SCOPE Procurement Summit, two conferences that operated simultaneously at the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina. The general theme of the event is how big data can be leveraged to gain intelligence. We spoke with several companies that were either beginning their data journey, or were trying to take their data to the next level

This was our first full year of attending both the spring and fall SCOPE conferences. The format of the two sister events was great; we enjoyed the one-on-one meetings and casual networking, which allowed us to have great conversations with the attendees along with some of the other exhibitors. Because Supply Chain and Procurement professionals are usually connected within a company, both groups were in attendance providing a good mix of attendees and exhibitors.

Discovering the Value of Data

The general theme of the conference was around data and how it can be leveraged to gain intelligence. We talked with several companies that were either beginning their data journey, or were trying to take their data to the next level. The companies that are beginning their data journey often are companies that have been using home-grown systems and they do everything in-house. The challenge that they usually have is quantifying the value of data. It’s easy to understand that they should have complete, clean, standardized data to provide them with visibility to how their supply chain is performing, but what is the value? How much can they affect the bottom line? This is where the RateLinx Enterprise Solution can show them the value of data.

When we are talking with these types of companies, it really comes down to trust. How can we engage with a company like this to show them the value of data’ Many times it starts with a simple exercise of taking whatever data they have and placing it in our modeling environment to see what the data tells us. Then we can discuss the results and explain potential strategies they could use to obtain the potential savings that have been discovered through our modeling work. Often times the strategies that are discussed are what the company has been struggling to do. And with one or more pieces of our Enterprise Solution, they can now execute on the strategy and have confidence that they can measure the results using the analytics in Intelligent Invoice Management (IIM) and the reports and Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) on the Dashboard.

Taking the Data to the Next Level

The companies that are looking to take their data to the next level have already quantified the value of data and they have a better understanding of what they might be missing. Usually they are missing a piece that will allow them to execute on a strategy they want to deploy. With these companies we take a similar approach where we take the data they have, place it in our modeling environment to model their strategy. When we present the results, the company is not surprised and we can see the piece of their environment/solution that they are missing which is preventing them from executing their strategy successfully.

We then discuss what pieces of the RateLinx Enterprise Solution we should deploy to augment their current environment. We also discuss how the analytics in IIM and the reports and KPI’s on the Dashboard could allow them to measure and monitor the successful implementation of their strategy.

Custom Solutions; Integrated into Existing Framework

With both types of companies, we are always looking at what the data is telling us, and we only implement the piece(s) of the solution that are required. You don’t need to rip out everything you have in order to take advantage of the RateLinx Enterprise Solution; we provide a custom solution with only the components you need and we integrate it within your existing framework.

Both the SCOPE Supply Chain Conference and SCOPE Procurement Summit provided an intimate setting for us to talk with just about every attendee. These conversations allowed us to get an overall view of efforts to incorporate data into supply chain and procurement operations and discuss which component of the RateLinx Enterprise Solution will best allow businesses to leverage data to gain a competitive advantage.

We’re looking forward to next year’s SCOPE events and continuing these conversations. In the meantime, please reach out to me at shannon.vaillancourt@ratelinx.com if you’re interested in learning more about our customized, integrated data solutions.