While the analytics marketplace, like the e-Sourcing marketplace, might be well established with most Procurement organizations able to name half a dozen likely providers off the top of their heads and most analyst firms able to name two dozen, the fact remains that less than half of Procurement organizations use real analytics and only the leaders go beyond basic spend reporting to index tracking, what-if savings estimates, or predictive trending.
There are numerous reasons for this lack of adoption, but a big reason was that early analytics solutions often came with a hefty six figure price tag. And that was just for the initial project. Then there were quarterly data warehouse refresh fees, report update fees, maintenance fees, and consulting fees to help interpret the patterns and identify the biggest opportunities. Many early adopters ending up paying seven figures annually, often for a limited return. Why? Because by the time the warehouse was refreshed, the reports run, the analytics done, and the spend opportunities identified, the business demand changed, the market dynamics changed, the prices changed, and the analysis was of limited relevance.
However, as newer solutions, like Spend Radar and BIQ came on the scene, spend analytics became much more affordable, and useable, as analysts could refresh data on monthly, weekly, and daily basis and obtain the solution in the five figure range. Plus, they had a fair amount of control over what data was loaded, what cubes were built, and what reports were available — with the ability to generate their own cubes and reports, sometimes on the fly with solutions like BIQ. Analytics stated to take off. And so did the e-Sourcing suite providers that gobbled them up. As a result, there are now few analytics solutions that are affordable by the mid-market and fewer still targetted there.
This is where Analytics8 SpendView comes in, built on over a decade of big data analytics experience and over 15 years of spend analytics experience by the solution designers, SpendView is a new analytics offering designed to bring modern easy-to-use spend analysis capability to any organization with over 10M in annual spend at a price tag it can afford, but good enough to satisfy even large multi-nationals with unique needs. What kind of price tag? A price tag that starts in the low five figures for a perpetual license (with low annual maintenance fees). (This is a price tag that can allow an average mid-market organization to obtain at least a 10X ROI every year.)
The new Analytics8 SpendView suite is a set of 4 integrated modules that allows an analyst to family and normalize suppliers, identify preferred and manage suppliers, categorize spend, and create and drill into spend reports. The vendor normalization module allows the analyst reviews all supplier records and maps all duplicates to one master record. It’s got a very simple interface, search, filter, select, and associate with a single click. The supplier assignment allows the analyst can select all unmanaged or un-preferred vendors, choose whether or not to manage or prefer them, assign suppliers to parents, and quickly see what percentage of spend is with preferred and/or managed suppliers. The categorization module allows the analyst to categorize transactions to categories by defining rules. The interface, currently supplier or description driven (but which should also be department and / or GL-code driven), allows a user to drill into uncategorized transactions, filter for similarity, and define rules that map groups of transactions to categorized spend. The rule is added in numeric order, but can be re-ordered as needed. And the reporting module ontains a set of canned widget-based drill down reports that allow an analyst to drill down into spend data, by supplier, department, category, geography, or other attribute and extract a report on the data, and only the data, they want to see it — which could be invoice data, payment data, or purchase order data. It’s built on QlikView and has the full capabilities thereof.
It’s power and usefulness to the average organization is more-or-less on par with its more established primary competitors — which SI sees as Rosslyn Analytics, Sievo, Spend 360, and SpendHQ (especially since BIQ and Spend Radar, named above, were among the acquisitions of the previous generation of best-of-breed stand alone analytics providers) — and it is a quick entry into spend analytics for any enterprise already using QlikView for other analytics needs.
SI recommends you check out the deep dive on Analytics8 SpendView by the doctor and the prophet over on Spend Matters Pro [membership required] that goes deep into strengths and weaknesses, corporate SWOT analysis, and the market landscape. (Part I, Part II and Part III now available) You won’t be disappointed.