Recently there’s been a shift in focus by the analyst community and Chief Procurement Officers to what’s generally called “Contract Management”. But if you’ve ever worked for or with a publicly-funded entity, you’re probably wondering why this is suddenly a ‘hot topic’. The software industry has spent the last 10 years perfecting delivery of high-volume, low-value procurement processes. Eventually it was bound to recognize there’s more to ROI than catalogs and what is nebulously called “sourcing” – it’s also about reducing costly lawsuits that interfere with your ability to fulfill requirements, and maintaining a complete history of your complex, multi-year contracts, from requirement through completion, that documents your decisions and actions and manages changes.
Public sector entities’ regulations, mandatory reporting, and oversight drove them years ago to standardize these activities – so to hear “Contract Management” as a buzzword gives me hope that finally(!), the industry recognizes that procurement is not just about transactions and data and automation. It’s not just the process of creating a document, or filling out a form, or allowing the legal department to edit clauses during negotiations. It’s about negotiations and phone calls and e-mails and ‘living’ documents that change over time.
Contract Management, done effectively in the context of software, is a Best Business Practice that allows your organization – public or private – to bring the *entire lifecycle* of a procurement into your Enterprise landscape. Only by having a complete record of a procurement, can a professional purchaser or buyer effectively manage suppliers and maximize ROI on large contracts.
Procurement professionals – your time has finally come: Join the debate!
Is “Contract Management” a misnomer?
Shouldn’t we really be talking Procurement Management?
Is the functionality in SAP Procurement for Public Sector addressing these requirements?