HICX Solutions, a provider of a leading Supplier Management platform, was founded in London in 2004 to create a platform to effectively tackle supplier master data management and supplier risk management. Recognizing that the Supplier Information Management (SIM) platforms of the day were not enough to effectively manage suppliers — especially since the data was needed in ERP/MRP, sourcing, procurement, logistics, and related systems — they embarked upon a mission to create a solution that fixes that.
The problem with SIM solutions, besides the fact that they aren’t true SPM (Supplier Performance Management) or SRM (Supplier Relationship Management) solutions; don’t address risk; and don’t address supplier development, is that SIM is not master data management. It’s supplier data management, but it’s data management within the platform. An organization needs supplier data management throughout the enterprise, not just a single platform. And that is effectively master data management (MDM).
And that is HICX’s core strength. It’s cradle-to-grave supplier management and contract management is built upon this core industry leading MDM capability that can not only accept data from and push data to dozens of ERP and best-of-breed systems throughout the enterprise, but can automatically match and merge the majority of such data, even upon an initial engagement. (HICX has already mapped common fields in dozens of ERP and best-of-breed systems and if your systems have already been mapped, you can skip the mapping step that typically precedes a data merge process.) The MDM system will automatically identify duplicates and conflicts and human data stewards will only need to correct records on an exception basis (when there is a conflict as the system can be programmed to ignore exact duplicates on import).
On top of this MDM capability, HICX has implemented a suite of solutions for:
- Supplier On-boarding for discovery, enrolment, and enablement on the system
- Supplier Data Management for supplier data centralization and management
- Supplier Performance Management for KPI, issue, and initiative tracking
- Supplier Risk & Compliance Management for risk factor, regulatory, and insurance tracking
- Supplier Corrective Action Management for issue identification, resolution plans, and implementation tracking
The supplier on-boarding, which is built on the industry leading MDM, is a particular platform strength. In the HICX, the on-boarding process can start as early as the identification of a new supplier which is onboarded using a process that adapts to the type of supplier (be it under consideration as a long-term [strategic] supplier, a sub-contractor, a one-off vendor, logistics company, government organization, etc.) and that is simplified with the provision of a D&B (or equivalent) number that allows for all public information to be automatically imported. One advantage of the solution is that, even before a supplier is onboarded, potential matches or duplicates in the system are automatically identified to prevent a user from inviting a supplier that is already doing business with another organizational unit. And if additional data is needed, data can be imported quickly from any platform using their script-based import capability.
For more information on HICX Solutions, check out the 2-part series on Spend Matters Pro (Part I and Part II [coming soon]) [membership required] by the doctor and the prophet. This in-depth analysis is definitely worth your time if you are on the market for a SxM solution and trying to not only identify the leaders (of which HICX is one), but determine which of the leading solutions is right for you.