Procurement often lags in automation due to factors rooted in historical technology adoption and process improvement practices. Complex and diverse procurement processes hinder standardized automation solutions, while organizations' risk aversion results from procurement's impact on costs and supplier relations, making them cautious of potential automated glitches. The presence of legacy systems that don't integrate well with modern tools adds to the challenge, and the need for change management efforts, including stakeholder buy-in and training, can delay implementation efforts.
While these lines of reasoning all hold some truth, automating procurement has been known to result in a significant ROI. For this reason, we thought it was imperative to understand how other teams could overcome these barriers and achieve stronger supply chain and procurement. to help. we sat down with a true legend in the world of procurement solutions, Mike Marino, who has over 35 years of software industry experience under his belt.
Introducing Mike Marino
With a remarkable 35-year career in the software industry, Mike has journeyed through a series of roles, from medium-sized ERP companies to being a part of a small startup called Arriba. Throughout his journey, Mike has worked with renowned companies like Disney, Nike, HP, and more. His expertise centers around SAP Ariba and Fieldglass solutions, making him an industry powerhouse.
When asked about what he learned through his long tenure in procurement, Mike shares, "In my current role at Convergent IS (CIS), I focus on providing sales expertise to elevate the messaging and positioning of our solutions, complementing SAP and enhancing the Ariba ecosystem. Our goal is to unlock the true potential of SAP Ariba and Fieldglass solutions for our customers, leading to remarkable benefits."
Adoption: The Key to Transformation
The conversation shifts to the importance of adoption in achieving transformational results.
Mike emphasizes, "Adoption has been a cornerstone throughout my career. It's not just about selling software; it's about ensuring customers use it effectively. At ConvergentIS, our solutions are designed to enhance SAP Ariba and Fieldglass solutions, allowing customers to achieve paperless invoicing, increased compliance, and improved process efficiency."
Mike discusses the CIS primary solution – the Procurement Gateway. "Our cloud-based solution, powered by SAP's Business Technology Platform, acts as a single pane of glass to integrate processes, data, and applications. It's about leveraging the power of existing solutions to fill process gaps and improve functionality."
Empowering Suppliers: The Self-Service Revolution
The conversation delves into the supplier and vendor self-service trend.
"We're witnessing unprecedented supplier participation and compliance due to web-based applications. We've built solutions that simplify contractor time entry for services, catering to even the most intricate rate variations. Our solutions provide efficiency and ease, transforming manual processes into seamless operations."
Lessons Learned: The Cloud Advantage
As the conversation wraps up, Mike shares key takeaways for procurement and SAP directors.
"Shifting from on-premise to cloud solutions means embracing extensions. The robustness of SAP and Ariba systems is undeniable, but to unlock their true potential, you need to explore solutions like the Procurement Gateway. The value lies in these extensions that maximize your investment."
There you have it, folks – an enlightening conversation with the industry veteran Mike Marino. We've explored the power of SAP solutions, the importance of adoption, and the game-changing potential of cloud-based extensions.
Remember, procurement is an ever-evolving landscape, and to thrive, you need to embrace innovation and leverage the right solutions. The journey towards a stronger supply chain and procurement process is an ongoing climb, and with experts like Mike leading the way, success is just around the corner.
Until next time, keep elevating your procurement game and keep that supply chain rock solid.
Cheers to a stronger future!