The recent global developments have caused financial uncertainty in the market. But it’s also increased organisations’ interests in ways to better control costs. However, before cutting any unnecessary costs, organisations need to have a better understanding of their total spend.
The PwC US CFO Pulse Survey (based on six surveys which took place between March and June 2020) clearly showed how difficult it is to predict the effects of the epidemic on business.
Key findings from the survey revealed that:
There are multiple paths to grow the top line; 63% of respondents are planning changes to products and services while 41% are looking to alter pricing
Business growth drives technology investments
Organisations are most worried about a rise in COVID-19 infections affecting returns to work (59%) and impacts of the global economic downturn (54%)
Remote work is no longer viewed as a productivity drain and is instead seen as a permanent option for 54% of organisations
While many companies continue to cut costs, the decline in plans to defer or cancel investments may signal a hint of cautious optimism about investing in growth initiatives. Maintaining investments in things like digital transformation and customer experience throughout the pandemic underscores how some finance leaders are prioritising growth and resilience.
The continued focus on investing in technology for growth rather than cost reductions further signals optimism about where companies are headed post-COVID-19. But it’s all about finding the right balance between cutting costs and making good growth decisions.
Why is having full spend visibility is crucial now?
The uncertainty caused by COVID-19 increases pressures to reduce costs and have better cost control to cover the losses and missed revenues. This requires a new way of thinking – instead of reviewing individual cost items line by line, it’s important to have full visibility over all spend and go back to basics.
Ask yourself. How much in total are we spending? Who are our top suppliers? What are we purchasing from them?
By looking at these basics, we understand which operations are the most critical right now. If you do not know who you do business with, you are taking an unnecessary risk and might end up with some unpleasant surprises with your suppliers.
Even in tough situations, it’s important to take the time to look at the data before making any final decisions. If you rely on paper invoices and your AP clerks are working remotely in different locations, it is difficult to get one consolidated view of all your invoices and spend. Once your procurement and invoicing processes are automated and electronic, you have all the data available for more detailed analyses. When you can base your decisions on data instead of guesswork, you can expect better business results.
How can Basware help?
With Basware’s P2P solutions, you can consolidate, and view spend from different systems, including direct and non-direct purchases, and view spend by category, segment, departure, cost center, etc. This will provide you with a simplified view of all your spend. By using artificial intelligence (AI), Basware solution can also make predictions for any upcoming payments based on your spend commitments.
Decisions made based on data can also be more ethical. When decisions are made based on available data instead of guesswork, it’s easier to be transparent and share data across the organisation. Organisations now have a unique opportunity to shift to a data-driven culture. In these uncertain times, the way an organisation acts and reacts will be the critical enabler for business continuity.
New dashboard with revolutionary 100% spend visibility
A big challenge with data is often that there is a lot of data but very little time to do anything with it. Therefore, we believe that businesses need a solution that’s smart enough to provide recommendations. We wanted to embed this intelligence into Basware Analytics and have introduced a new Spend Insights dashboard.
The Basware approach is revolutionary - we provide 100% spend visibility in an automated manner. With the new, highly visual Spend Insights dashboard, we can show the entire spend – not only PO based spend but also non-PO based spend. The spend is collected based on the invoice information in the database and enables the following:
Visibility of 100% of all the outgoing money and how it’s structured
The ability to break spend down into authorised and unauthorised spend
Businesses to see the contractual spend – how much of the payments are based on an agreement in aggregated level, and show that also on contract number level
Companies to track how much spend has been allocated to individual agreements and see how compliant they are
Firms to give a clear recommendation of what kind of actions you should take based on this data
Spend analyses and getting full visibility over organisation spend have traditionally been tough objectives to achieve. Especially during these times, companies are under high pressure to find savings, and those are typically found from the spend with no POs in place. With these latest Basware Analytics tools, the procurement departments can rapidly identify the areas for potential savings and mitigate the reduction in the top line.