Procurement IT.gifThe contract is signed, months of negotiation are concluded, the supplier is already paying performance incentives and the sourcing managers are going home for their first decent night’s rest in a long time. Is the hard work over? Doubtful, says Peter Alkema, Head of CAO OPS Absa, in this month’s SmartProcurement.

“Typically this is just the beginning of the hard work for the operational procurement team. Depending on the contracted commodity there may be system development as well as the loading of catalogues and contracts. Generally, after contract signature, an organisation will be at the beginning of its “Purchase to Pay” (PTP) value chain, which can be a key indicator of a world-class procurement organisation.

“Best practices exist for how to operate and implement PTP, but without a carefully chosen technology the most robust and efficient processes on paper will be ineffective and costly. SAP SRM offers full, end-to-end process enablement for PTP, which plugs seamlessly into an organisation’s existing SAP R/3 or ECC installation. If, however, you have no ERP installation, you will at least need to install SAP MM (Materials Management) and SAP FI (Financials) to gain the most value from SAP’s integration and enterprise-wide functionality. Every step in the PTP process is catered for by a specific document which effectively “mirrors” the paper documentation you would expect to process.

Absa picture Sept newsletter.jpg“A key feature of the SAP enabled PTP process is shopping carts, the likes of which are found in online shopping, which enable the user to create a “basket of goods” for approval. Additionally, three-way or two-way matching can be activated to support policy driven reconciliation of source documents and to enable purchase orders to be sent via email, fax and XML.

“As with any systems implementation, the investment in training and change management is critical, particularly if SAP SRM is one of the earlier modules that is being implemented.

Peter Alkema will showcase, at a breakfast and three-hour workshop hosted in Johannesburg and Cape Town, the operational procurement at Absa. Decision makers and executives in your organisation will have the opportunity to engage with Absa on its SAP SRM journey to World-Class Operational Procurement.

For more information on the breakfast sessions please contact Erieka Santos at 0861 334 326 or email her at admin@smartprocurement.co.za.