This year we’ve attacked the UX in Sourcing and Procurement solutions, and for e-Auctions, e-RFX, Optimization, Spend Analytics, and Procure-to-Pay in particular. This was great, but if you really understand Sourcing and Procurement, you know that it’s more than just a set of (integrated) modules with a great user experience. It’s a plan, a process, and, most importantly, a program.
Those organizations that are reasonably advanced in their sourcing journey know that the best success often comes from a category management program that starts with category identification and opportunity assessment, proceeds through a sourcing plan, and then the sourcing process, which culminates in a contract, that then flips over to Procurement which issues a purchase order, receives one or more goods receipts and invoices, issues approvals, and, finally payments. This is all part of a program that works against a project plan and one or more category goals.
This project plan also needs to be managed. Hopefully within your S2P suite, but if not, in another tool that, hopefully, integrates with the S2P suite or, in some cases, the organization’s mix of best-of-breed Supply Management applications. But, as one might surprise by now, such a tool must be immensely usable and provide a great user experience if it is to be used.
However, this is easier said than done because simply slapping a great user experience on a traditional project management tool is not going to cut it. This is because the types of programs that revolve around Sourcing, SRM, Analytics, and P2P are considerably different and require functionalities considerably above and beyond a typical project management application. In other words, slapping a category management theme onto a project management or sourcing application won’t make the grade.
This is why the next UX series produced by the doctor will be on Program Management UX, with the P2P posts co-authored by the revolutionary. So keep a watchful eye out for this one — it might help you understand some of the key functionality that should be included in your S2P platform, which many platforms are still missing today.