Expands Spend Data Management solution with automated tools to help tame data challenge
Rutherford, NJ — October 2, 2003 — Solution provider Zycus this week rolled out the latest version of its flagship Spend Data Management (SDM) offering, featuring an expanded suite of software products with automated SDM tools and a collaboration framework that are intended to reduce the total cost of ownership of enterprise spend data initiatives.
Spend data management has been drawing increasing attention as a foundation for successful supply management. Technology consultancy Aberdeen Group, in a recent white paper on the subject, noted, "When organized and classified to a standard schema, spend data can be mined for a wealth of intelligence on spending patterns, inventory status, and part attributes."
The problem, Aberdeen continued, is that few companies have gotten a handle on their spend data. "At most companies, spend data resides in multiple, disparate systems and is not classified to a level of detail that is useful for analysis," the analyst firm wrote. "As a result, supply managers and business executives are being forced to develop strategies and make decisions based more on intuition than fact."
As a consequence, Aberdeen has estimated that companies are collectively losing billions each year due to their inability to organize and analyze spend data. The analyst firm said that, based on its own research, companies using solutions to better manage their spend data have been able to achieve 2 to 12 percent reduction in material costs through informed sourcing, 50 percent reduction in off-contract spending, 20 to 70 percent reduction in inventory levels, and 5 to 50 percent reduction in inventory costs.
In addition, Aberdeen wrote, "Automated solutions also make SDM a frequent and repeatable process, allowing enterprises to drive continuous improvement and to rapidly adjust supply management strategies to leverage ever-changing market conditions."
Zycus has attacked the spend data challenge with its Spend Data Management suite, designed to consolidate data from multiple, isolated data pools residing in disparate systems — such as accounts payable (AP)/general ledger (GL), enterprise resource planning (ERP), contract management, request for quote/proposal (so-called RFx systems) and procurement systems — and to help transform that data into actionable information.
Version 2.0 of the solution, released this week, includes three solutions that can be deployed as independent modules or as one enterprise suite. The provider's Detailed Spend Visibility (DSV) solution offers an automated spend analysis solution that focuses on providing in-depth visibility and insight to enterprise spend patterns. The solution provider particularly highlights DSV's ability to dive deep into an enterprise's spend using the United Nation's eight-digit UNSPSC system for classifying goods and services. At the same time, Zycus said that DSV is capable of processing high volumes of transactions every month.
The new DSV solution makes better use of an artificial intelligence (AI)-based classification engine and focuses on the rapid delivery of an enterprise spend analysis, enabling spend analytics on-demand, according to Zycus.
The Master Data Rationalization (MDR) is intended to address master data issues associated with enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, including those that arise out of mergers and acquisitions, ERP consolidation or product lifecycle management (PLM) integration initiatives. The solution provides a software toolset combined with domain expertise intended to help large enterprises resolve a critical spend data issue by discovering products and parts data "on-time" and helping minimize inventory build-up and proliferation of new parts.
The MDR solution combines the ability for a one-time clean-up of master data for duplicate parts identification (for inventory reduction, for example), reporting and analysis, along with real-time integration within ERP/PLM systems to improve search and discovery of products and parts, according to the solution provider.
Finally, Zycus said that its Real-time Spend Compliance (RTSC) solution offers spend classification tools that are "integration ready" with ERP and e-procurement systems (such as SAP, Ariba) to provide UNSPSC classification "at-source". This feature can be integrated within an existing user interface and is intended to drive increased adoption of e-procurement and greater compliance with preferred suppliers and contract terms.
Companies already using Zycus' solution include GE and Unilever, as well as P&O, Florida Crystals, EnPro Industries, Bosch and Honeywell Federal Manufacturing & Technologies (FM&T).
"It is not that the 'spend data crisis' was not known, but more an issue of the availability of the right software tools at most enterprises," said Sandip Maiti, director of marketing at Zycus. "With the release of SDM suite v2.0, we are confident that Zycus will help accelerate deployment of Spend Data Management initiatives at leading organizations around the world, reigniting the spend analysis and spend compliance marketplace."