In our last post we introduced you to Statess, a relatively unknown solution provider in the SRM space on this side of the pond even though they were conceived from State of Flux who have been producing leading SRM research reports for six years, in business for eleven, and are a leading provider of SRM consulting in the UK.
We discussed how they offer a SRM suite focussed on performance, contracts, risk, innovation, relationship, and sustainability management with over fifty sub-modules that address dozens of facets of performance, risk, and relationship management. We also noted how the platform could, if needed, be used for category management in addition to contract management, CSR management, and even the management of overall supplier development programmes.
The first thing to note about the Statess SRM platform was that it was designed to be modular, flexible, and adaptable. This means an organization can not only choose only the functionality that they want from such a platform, but can configure it how they want and even customize the terminology used in the UI. Even if an organization could use all of the functionality, sometimes a staged roll-out with limited functionality is best at first as this allows training to be focussed and prevents users from getting overwhelmed and avoiding the system. (And if the organization has systems with some of the functionality and wishes to keep using those existing systems, disabling duplicate functionality makes sure that the users don’t get confused.)
The next thing to note is that this web-based platform is highly configurable. Not only can the user define and customize reporting dashboards, as one would expect from any modern tool, but the user can design and customize their home page and the view for the entry point to every module they have access to. Basically, not only do all reports have overview widgets, but all action types have summary widgets, particular to what the user can see and do, that can be shown or hidden, rearranged as the user sees fit, and customized from a look-and-feel perspective. This allows the user to create a page that focusses on upcoming and overdue actions, quick access to artifacts (such as contracts, audits, certifications, etc.) stored in the system that they need to review on a regular basis, and entry points for key tasks that the user performs on a regular basis instead of just a shiny dangerous and deadly dashboard (which is where most systems stop).
After this, the next most important thing to note is that the user can create views from both an organizational perspective and a supplier perspective. The latter allows them to focus on a 360-degree view of a single supplier, as opposed to just an organizational view from a performance, relationship, or contract perspective and even replicate what the supplier will see based on what information they choose to share (with the supplier). Furthermore, from this view they can create or access any data or system artifact that relates to the supplier, regardless of the module it lives in as well as initiate new survey, innovation, or development programmes. The system maintains the necessary multidimensional relationships between the different data elements to enable the buyer to rapidly configure and access multiple views. Just like the best insights in a spend analysis project often come from looking at the data in unconventional ways, the best insights into supplier performance and, most importantly, development opportunities often come from looking at the supplier (data) from multiple perspectives. Statess realized this and built a tool that could support these multiple perspectives.
And the last point we are going to note in this post is that the platform, while quite extensive, is still looked upon as an early stage solution and is being actively, and aggressively, developed and more (and deeper) functionality will materialize over time, as well as more integrations to third party systems and data sources to shorten the average implementation timeframe and progress towards even more of an “out of the box” solution.
In our third, and final post in this initial series on Statess, we’ll overview some of the key capabilities of a few key modules.