In yesterday’s post I introduced you to Sourcing Life-cycle Management (SLM), a new dawn for aerospace, automotive, defense, medical device, and high-tech / electronic manufactures with complex direct sourcing problems. SLM is the integration of the supply chain centric business processes of sourcing, procurement, PIM, and supplier management that were always meant to be together.
In today’s post, I’m going to re-introduce you to Co-exprise, I company I first introduced you to in A Kick-Ass Direct Sourcing Solution for Manufacturers: Part II.
In my last post, I indicated that they were building a new-type of direct sourcing solution that integrates RFx, auctions, project management, collaboration, PIM, dashboards, and tree-based navigation as well as enhanced security, contextual-awareness, supplier qualification, and enhanced meta-data capabilities. But as I’ve come to understand it better, I’ve realized that it is the first solution on the market to make a serious, honest, effort to address the complex direct sourcing problems that other systems cannot handle because these types of problems are unique and require a distinct solution.
However, the real power of the Co-exprise platform is that all of this is built on a number of basic building blocks, including workflow management, business process rules, collaboration technologies, a centralized repository, project management, cBOMs (collaborative Bills of Material), cost models, and analytics, that are inherent to, and invasive across, the platform. This means that all of the technologies are integrated into one collaborative workflow where common data is always accessible and analyzable.
This allows the platform to offer benefits to its target verticals that go beyond standard solutions in the areas of productivity, implemented cost reduction, and compliance. Productivity increases start back in NPI (New Product Introduction) as the engineering team can load and track all designs in the system the minute the project starts and continue through to post-award contract management as delivery, quality, and SCOR (Supplier CORrective Actions) can be tracked against each order against the contract. As the system captures and tracks all of the orders and integrates contract management, the system is able to achieve fully implemented cost reductions. Finally, Co-exprise’s unique Secure Digital Forms Technology, which includes a unique ID in every form and allows the form to be completed and uploaded by suppliers off-line, can be used to create mandatory forms that ensure compliance with environmental regulations such as REACH and RoHS.
Now I’m not saying the platform is perfect. For example, it doesn’t have supplier side EIPP capabilities (a very useful part of e-Procurement which facilitates n-way matching and charge error detection before the supplier even sends the invoice), decision optimization (which would allow what-if scenarios to be created and analyzed on make-vs-buy decisions), or a mature spend analytics 2.0 offering (even though the initial spend analytics 2.0 offering they do have now puts standard analytics 1.0 offerings from traditional vendors to shame, and contains some advanced capabilities that are similar to capabilities only found in BIQ). However, it is the most complete platform I’ve encountered for the problem they’re solving, they can integrate with e-Procurement platforms like Ariba that handle EIPP, and they are still working on their new spend analytics offering, which could likely become one of the best analytics tools on the market for the direct sourcing problems they’re solving next year (and what they have now is nothing to scoff at).
For picking up the SLM gauntlet and bringing to market a solution that addresses the complex direct sourcing projects that have been largely ignored until now, Co-exprise is my vendor of the week. (A SI exclusive until year end or sponsor #2 signs up, whichever comes first.)