AnyData: Your Mid-Market BoB Analytics Solution for Opportunity Identification, Compliance Tracking, and Associated Project Management

AnyData, which we first covered on Sourcing Innovation back in 2017 (in AnyData: Another Analytics Arriviste from Across the Atlantic), has matured significantly since 2017, especially with its addition of auto-rule generation using AI in 2020 (as chronicled in AnyData, making spend analytics accessible by anyone! [Or, ‘The mid-market analytics quandary’]) over on the Spend Matters Content Hub, Pro/Insider subscription required).

Starting out as a Visual Development Framework / Data Hub, AnyData progressed into a good analytics offering, augmented by a good contract management (governance) offering, augmented by a good supplier management (primarily supplier data hub) offering, and that’s about where it was until 2020 when it significantly improved its analytics offering from a usability perspective and began the journey to take the rest of the platform from good to great.

Over the last two years, it has continued to refine its analytics offering from a quick-start/ease-of-use perspective where it has you up and running and doing real analytics in a guided self-service model in as little 15 minutes, added key field extraction and [better] analytics to its contract management module, included ESG/Sustainability support in its Supplier Management module, and built a brand new Project (Activity) (Savings) Tracking module with default templates for analytics-based savings projects, contract ([re-]negotiation projects), and supplier data gathering/compliance projects. In addition, using their rapid development capability, they can build custom, smart, project forms for any project type an organization wants to track very quickly (typically a few hours, a day at most) for a low fee [in addition to the standard templates you get included in the base subscription].

Since introducing their enhanced analytics offering three years ago with AI-based rule-derivation and easy re-classification, they have enhanced each part of the process to guide an average Procurement Practitioner and fledgeling analyst through each step of the process in a best-practice way that teaches them the basics while allowing them to go wide and deep as soon as they are ready.

For most clients, the AnyData process is this:

  1. Upload the file
  2. Determine if you want to
    • load the data Fresh,
    • Merge the data in, or
    • merge new data in while Replacing existing data for a time-period
  3. Select a Taxonomy (Standard, Industry Best Practice, or Tailored)
  4. Configure the Automation Process as needed
    (fields to analyze, priority, confidence intervals, etc. … or use the defaults)
  5. Review the Business KPI Dashboard and, optionally, drill into the Categorization Data Quality Dashboard
    • Optionally: Define rules for any significant or relevant unclassified spend (note that 100% mapping is not necessary, and not achievable by ANY solution on the market; 90%+ of the spend in a category is enough)
    • Optionally: Override the auto-generated rules, especially if you have a few products or services you treat atypically (for the chosen taxonomy; e.g. printer cartridges in electronics vs. office suppliers)
    • Optionally: Review, drag and drop the taxonometric (sub)categories as desired
    • Optionally: Enhance data/classifications as needed
  6. Review the Significant Opportunity Dashboards
  7. Dive into the Dashboards of Interest,
    which you can modify as needed to update / add analysis in a visual manner as needed
  8. Kick-off one or more analytics/savings project on an opportunity of interest
  9. Repeat from any step in the process as needed

A few points of note:

  • Through the SaaS front-end, file size is limited by browser limits but since they support compressed file uploads (and real-time decompression), that can easily be a 20GB file (uncompressed); if the initial file is too big, they support SFTP
  • AnyData is fast, so under a million rows of data only takes minutes to fully process
  • AnyData has best-practice starting taxonomies for multiple industries and can provide you with one upon setup
  • They tie their industry best-practice taxonomies to the standard taxonomies (like UNSPSC) and can make use of multiple data points for classification and for the industries they know well, their default rule generation will correctly classify 80%+ out of the gate
  • Their visual focus and the ability to drag and drop categories makes taxonomy classification super easy (and fields makes rules classification easy as well)
  • Rules can be on any combination of fields and use multiple types of matching (exact, partial, regex, etc.)
  • The Data Quality dashboard gives you a quick overview of the quality of data you uploaded (and the confidence you can have in the auto-generated rules without reviewing any manually, until you identify a need to do so in a category deep-dive)
  • The opportunity dashboards identify the best opportunities uncovered in the automated out-of-the-box analysis
  • It’s a click to start a savings/analytics project
  • You can jump back to any step at any time and continue on (down a different path) …

It’s tailored for quick start, quick execution, and quick time-to-value for a mid-market staffed by Procurement Professionals who are short on time and short on analytics training as it trains those procurement professionals how to do proper analytics through (semi-)guided workflows as they go.

If you’re a Mid-Market looking for a Best-of-Breed (BoB) analytics solution, AnyData should definitely be on your short list, especially since it’s one of the few offerings that can be obtained at an incredibly affordable price point due to the high DiY nature of the tool (and the focus on self-selection and self-serve SaaS sales). There aren’t many tools where you can get enterprise subscriptions starting at less than 2K/month, and few equal AnyData.