The following example shows how mergers and acquisitions can impact spend visibility: A Perfect Commerce manufacturing client has locations throughout Europe, China, and the U.S. Due to mergers and acquisitions, they have financial and ERP systems of different versions and types with many suppliers loaded into each system. While they would like to consolidate into one or two financial systems in the future, they currently use more than 30 systems, making it impossible to see all of the goods they are buying across the organization.

To begin streamlining, the organization needs to determine what information is in all the systems and where payables, contracts, catalogs, and supplier data are located—without changing any of the source data.

Next, they must plug in tools to extract only that data and marry it with data from other systems in other locations.

Finally, they will need to compile a list of information regarding suppliers, POs, and receipts through a single dashboard that enables their executives to identify risks, opportunities, savings, and areas of weakness in supplier contracts.

Until all the information comes together, the procurement group will continue to negotiate suppliers on a regional basis and remain unable to leverage the full organizational span for any supplier or commodity to achieve a better cost of goods.