I took advantage of a bit of quiet time this lovely Christmas Eve to update the heat map for my end-user client interactions this quarter. Here are some interesting take-aways:
- I spoke directly with eighty-five unique end user organizations, up from 82 in Q4 2008
- Hottest topics are Procure-to-pay (level from Q3); enterprise contract management applications (up slightly from Q3); and strategic sourcing solutions, both suites and stand-alone applications (up from Q3).
- Coolest topics include services procurement (down from Q3); procurement MDM (level from Q3); and vendor vulnerability assessment (down slightly from Q3).
Some thoughts on the results – it seems that procurement groups have moved out of “panic mode” and a focus on cost cutting strategies, vendor vulnerability, and utilizing e-procurement to slow down spend. Now the view is towards spending analysis, strategic sourcing suites and supply base management – solutions that deliver longer-term, sustain able costs. Big dollar, large project topics like procurement MDM remain on the back burner. All in all – I feel optimistic that these statistics point toward a recovering economy, and an environment that isn’t “abandon procurement, refocus on CRM,” but more like “Let’s build on our investment.” What a lovely Christmas present for the procurement profession!
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