A Time for Real Answers

[From iSource Business, September 2000]

No, no! iSource Business is not just another new magazine bursting onto the e-business scene. It is a place where industry executives and purchasing and supply management professionals can find hard-hitting analysis, viewpoints and lessons learned about online procurement and supply chain solutions. Simply put, iSource will focus exclusively on Internet-based B2B procurement and supply chain enablement.

Flattered to hear my peers identify us with Business 2.0, Fast Company and Industry Standard, I explain that our magazine is strictly B2B and is here to serve the business executive and purchasing professional concerned with the nonlabor spend. A true need exists for real answers about e-procurement. That's what iSource Business is here for9to cut through the hype and provide solid answers to everyday business problems in this dynamic new economy.

The birth of iSource is a testament to the existing information gap the magazine will fill. My publisher's own story is testimony to this. Hot on the trail of opportunities in the e-business market, Doug Moore, founder and CEO of Vulcan Publications, began formulating a strategy for his company's transformation into the new economy. In the process, he found that there was a lack of information on electronic procurement. It was a natural fit. The 15-year-old publishing company with more than 30 titles is known for finding unserved reader niches. Moore couldn't help himself. He had to start a magazine that would offer news and insight into e-procurement and supply chain management.

For me, the decision to come on board was immediate. For several years, I served as editor of the National Association of Purchasing Management¹s monthly magazine, Purchasing Today, where I witnessed profound change - change that is transforming the profession and making procurement and supply professionals the critical players they have always wanted to be. iSource will become the resource for informing, educating and advancing this cause.

No one needs to be told that B2B e-procurement is exploding. What's more profound is why. As the success stories roll in, we note the explosion has to do with dramatic cost savings and immediate return on investment (ROI) -- innovative business models that flip old ones upside down. For more than a decade, organizations dedicated themselves to installing various versions of enterprise resource planning (ERP) and supply chain management solutions, along with warehouse automating systems -- all to improve operations and save money. Yet procurement with in these "super-automated" companies is still closely modeled on paper-based processes. Enter e-procurement: The Internet changes everything-again.

A report by Deloitte Consulting shows e-procurement to be cost-effective far sooner than was the case with ERP systems, with average ROI exceeding 300 percent over the lifetime of a system.


Automation of the procurement process clearly saves e-enabled companies transaction costs. Many are discovering that the real value, however, lies in new opportunities for strategic sourcing and more efficient supply chain management. So, beyond cost savings, iSource will help strategic leaders uncover process improvements, total cost management strategies, and improved time to market opportunities.

And what about the buzz about collaboration? In the 1990s companies finally got good at tearing down the walls and working collaboratively within. Now, with today¹s enabling technology the opportunity for collaboration moves beyond individual organizations to the outside. The now famous consortia net markets are the strongest evidence of this move to the big "C." The market is now conditioned to continue experimenting with collaboration and the opportunity to use it for even further efficiencies. Again, iSource will answer the call to address these issues and offer solutions.

Without question, iSource will help businesses leverage the e-marketplace and position the B2B buyer as a key player in the strategic plans of any company, anywhere. We¹ll accomplish our mission not only through a highly informative magazine, but also through an interactive Web site: www.isourceonline.com. Each month we'll take an in-depth look at specific topics. For example, this issue's cover story, "The Revolutionaries," goes beyond explaining who they are; it provides a value proposition for B2B buyers. Our columns and departments offer a mix of topics you can mentally mark and return to from month to month.

But don't just take my word for it. Read our premiere issue for yourself and then log on to our Web site. The experience will tell you who we are and what iSource will regularly offer you, our valued reader.


Julie Murphree

Editor

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