Wednesday, 17 Jul 2024

40 Business Requirements for Your Strategic Sourcing Software

procurement software requirements

Constructing an RFI (Request for Information) for an RFQ Software platform presents numerous challenges. Based on a survey of strategic sourcing leaders, here are 40 business requirements for your RFQ software – with no BS – organized around the four key sourcing personas: Procurement Leader, Buyer/Category Manager, Supplier, and Stakeholder.

Before implementing predictive sourcing software or supply chain management software, it’s essential to consider your requirements. To brainstorm a requirement, complete the sentence: “As a [persona], I want to [action]. What should a system have to help me do [objective]?”

After brainstorming your requirements, narrow down the list before sending it out to solution providers. The goal is to have as few requirements as possible, all of which have a significant impact on your core business case objectives.

What Sourcing Leaders/CPOs/CFOs Need to Consider When Implementing RFQ Software

Sourcing Leader/CPO/CFO Business Case Objectives:

  • Run more sourcing platform projects
  • Drive greater savings per project
  • Drive greater overall savings
  • Decrease project cycle time
  • Increase % of on-calendar sourcing projects

Sourcing Leader/CPO/CFO Business Requirements:

  • Bid calendar – Does your system show a calendar of all steps in my sourcing process?
  • Agent identification – Does your system show which person on my team does what step in my sourcing process?
  • Completion indicator – Does your sourcing platform show each sourcing process’s % of completion?
  • Stage indicator – Does your system show each sourcing process stage from Draft to Award?
  • Role-based access – Does your system allow me to add and remove stakeholders and suppliers from a sourcing process?
  • Self-Service supplier onboarding and portal – Does your system allow an invited supplier to self-register and self-onboard by reviewing a set of automated training materials?
  • Iterative process – Does your system allow me to amend or modify a strategic sourcing process without starting over?
  • In-app live help via chat – Does your system offer all user types (including suppliers) live in-app support via chat?
  • Savings reporting – Does your system generate reports on savings for each sourcing process?
  • Historical reporting – Does your system allow me to see changes over time between each time this event has been run?
  • Repeatable templating – Does your system allow me to easily configure templates for my organization’s approval process and predictive sourcing needs?
  • Data export and APIs – Does your system allow me to fully export all my tabulation and audit data and provide a secure API for me to connect to other systems and business data warehouses?
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What Buyers Need to Consider When Implementing RFQ Software

Buyer Business Case Objectives:

  • Create more sourcing processes
  • Run more competitive sourcing processes
  • Engage suppliers and stakeholder/customers in the process
  • Honor stakeholder/customer’s award intent

Buyer Business Requirements:

  • Sourcing activity triggers – Does your system remind me to complete a sourcing process that I have scheduled in advance?
  • Baseline data and bid model ingestion – Does your system allow me to mass ingest my baseline spend data into a secure relational database with zero manual data entry?
  • Supplier database ingestion – Does your system allow me to mass upload my supplier contact data with zero manual data entry?
  • Weighted criteria and requirement creation – Does your system allow me to create weighted criteria and business requirements for suppliers to respond to?
  • Supplier shortlisting – Does your system allow me to shortlist suppliers before inviting them and show me when they have confirmed participation?
  • Custom email invitations – Does your system invite stakeholders and suppliers to join a sourcing process using automatic email notifications?
  • Custom email notifications – Does your system remind users when they have an incomplete task and provide an opt-out option?
  • In-app messaging with in-thread file uploads – Does your system enable internal messaging between buyers and stakeholders and suppliers with distinct channels for each type of communication?
  • Automated quote comparison – Does your system enable a fully automated quote comparison that factors in disparate coverage?
  • Multi-criteria value analysis – Does your system allow me to communicate the financial costs of specific requirements for apples-to-apples comparisons?
  • Multi-supplier optimized awards – Does your system enable different suppliers to be awarded different lots for a multi-supplier best and final award outcome?
  • Live bidding events – Does your system allow buyers to run fully automated live bidding events with dynamic feedback?
  • Manage by exception rules models – Does your system automatically identify exceptions in bid models or supplier quotes?
  • Self-learning bidding models – Does your system model the behavior of suppliers to give them more targeted feedback that helps them make competitive offers over time?
  • Historical category benchmarking – Does your system benchmark quotes against other quotes received by similar suppliers in the same category?
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What Suppliers Need to Consider When Implementing RFQ Software

Supplier Business Case Objectives:

  • Create more quoting opportunities
  • Make quotes more likely to win
  • Enable supplier feedback to improve award value

Supplier RFQ Business Requirements:

  • Supplier rep and organization database – Does your system offer a searchable database that clearly distinguishes supplier organization and sales rep?
  • Automated supplier training sandbox – Does your system offer an automated training experience for suppliers to practice submitting a quote?
  • Next steps notifications in-app – Does your system notify suppliers about the next step they need to take and provide relevant screen links?
  • Supplier-stakeholder communication channel – Does your system provide an in-app communication channel for suppliers and stakeholders to directly communicate?
  • Price recommendations – Does your system provide unique price recommendations for each supplier and line item based on responses to weighted criteria?
  • Dynamic feedback – Does your system provide the option of deploying dynamic feedback to suppliers while they are creating and submitting a quote?
  • Automate promotion of successful awards to stakeholders – Does your system help competitive suppliers receive more purchases by promoting their pricing to internal stakeholders?
  • Supplier document repository – Does your system provide suppliers a place to securely store relevant documents, such as financial and tax information?

What Stakeholders Need to Consider When Implementing RFQ Software

Stakeholder Business Case Objectives:

  • Meet business needs in a timely fashion
  • Include multiple/cross-functional stakeholder perspectives
  • Discover trusted partners who deliver excellent value

Stakeholder Business Requirements:

  • Multiple levels of stakeholder access – Does your system provide stakeholders the option to be either active or passive participants in the construction of the sourcing process?
  • Stakeholders can create templates with technical requirements – Does your system provide a template-based system for stakeholders to submit a requisition to the buyer?
  • Stakeholder-Buyer messaging channel – Does your system have a distinct channel to facilitate stakeholder-buyer communication?
  • Stakeholder can modify weighted criteria to reflect total cost of ownership – Does your system allow stakeholders to modify weighted criteria to reflect the true costs to the business?
  • Stakeholder can participate in the supplier evaluation and award experience – Does your system enable stakeholders to create award scenarios by selecting and de-selecting weighted criteria?
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We know that there is often pressure for procurement software to contain so many features that it cannot be easily used by any persona. That’s why in a future dominated by user-friendly, purpose-built sourcing enablement platforms, being intentional about what truly matters for your core user personas is vital. After reviewing the requirements above, what business requirements is your existing RFQ software missing?

Eireview can help your business stay ahead of the market. Visit their website to learn more about Eireview and how they can ensure all your RFQ requirements are met.

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In conclusion, implementing the right strategic sourcing software is crucial for optimizing your procurement processes. By considering the specific requirements of each sourcing persona, you can streamline workflows, drive savings, and improve overall efficiency. Don’t settle for software that doesn’t meet your business needs. Explore Eireview to find the perfect solution for your RFQ requirements.