The Benefits Of Moving Supplier Onboarding From Excel To The Cloud
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In a previous post, we’ve shared with you why cloud supply chain management solutions are the future. That’s because organizations everywhere are looking to use them to increase proficiency and profitability.
In fact, by the end of the year, Gartner expects over 90% of the spending on supply chain execution systems to be for cloud supply chain solutions.
Some of these solutions cover the entire procurement cycle, while others, like Prokuria, only cover specific parts. Today, we’ll share why we think organizations should abandon paper-based procurement and Excels and move supplier onboarding to the cloud.
5 reasons to ditch Excels and move supplier onboarding in the cloud
We get why you rely on spreadsheets - they are inexpensive to implement, very easy to use, and flexible. But although these are great strengths, at the same time, they are also great weaknesses. You can’t run a business on a series of spreadsheets. Here’s why:
1. Multiple duplicates
Spreadsheets are not designed to be used collaboratively. Yes, they can be linked to central data repositories, but most of the time, they’re not. So you end up with multiple copies of the same document and no master of the data. How can you base your decisions on data if you don’t know which data is accurate?
2. No collaborative working
Let’s reiterate the fact that spreadsheets are not designed to be used collaboratively with another example. Let’s say an employee opens a document and starts editing it. After a while, another employee opens the same document and begins making changes. When they’re done, whose changes will be saved? And who guarantees that the two sets of changes don’t conflict?
3. Impossible data maintenance
It’s very difficult to maintain spreadsheets when there are multiple authors. Each will add their own columns with notes and calculations and, before you know it, the document becomes unmanageable.
Also, there are no logic systems or business processes built into spreadsheets. Yes, you can implement cell protection, lookups, and ranges, but these are not enough to keep your data in check.
At the same time, because everyone can edit spreadsheets as they please, errors can creep in, and it’s almost impossible to track them down and correct - a spreadsheet doesn’t tell you when data is wrong, they simply display the wrong information.
4. Poor security
When using spreadsheets, you can password-protect the document itself, but once someone gains access to the data, it’s impossible to restrict what they can see and edit. Therefore, you cannot grant access to data depending on a person’s role.
The portability of the data is also a security issue considering the GDPR and other regulations.
5. Lack of traceability
Traceability is a big issue that encompasses all the shortcomings we’ve previously mentioned. If you’re using spreadsheets, it’s impossible to determine who, when, and where data has been updated.
If random changes can be made by anyone who gains access to the data, and you can’t see what was changed and by whom, the flexibility of spreadsheets becomes a liability under the GDPR.
Benefits of cloud-based supplier onboarding
1. Better visibility over suppliers’ capabilities
Most organizations today struggle with gathering and organizing supplier information because they lack a centralized procurement solution.
A cloud-based supplier onboarding platform not only helps you determine a supplier’s capability of delivering specific goods and services, but it also enables you to easily compare suppliers based on different criteria (such as price, risk of supply disruptions, regulatory requirements, etc.)
2. Streamlined collection of supplier data
Cloud-based supplier onboarding solutions enable you to create online questionnaires to gather the supplier information that’s critical to your business. These questionnaires support conditional questions and question response types such as a multiple-selection list, and you can even organize related questions into qualification areas and then assign specific outcomes to your suppliers after evaluating the information you receive. Even more, you can use these outcomes to automatically score suppliers based on the rules you create.
Since all supplier data is centralized, sourcing events become a breeze - all you need to do is select the suppliers who fit your preliminary requirements and take it from there. As suppliers submit their responses, you can either accept or return them to the supplier for clarification or correction in real-time.
3. You can scale your processes, thus growing your business
There’s only so much data procurement reps can process. But with the use of and automation, the amount of supplier information you can process grows exponentially. This means you have more opportunities to grow your business while lowering costs, improving the quality of products/services, and eliminating human errors.
Building an efficient supplier onboarding process with Prokuria
Prokuria helps organizations gain better control over their procurement processes and achieve major time and cost savings through automation. Using our cloud-based supplier onboarding solution will save you hours of manual work collecting documentation and filling in the information in different spreadsheets and systems.
At the same time, we can help you ensure compliance, segment and approve suppliers, and customize your supplier registration platform. Our solution covers the entire sourcing and supplier management process, addressing all the needs of the Procurement Departments.