Maintaining positive B2B relationships between buyers and suppliers is increasingly viewed as a strategic effort, not simply a courtesy. But the interconnectedness of supply chains can create a tangled web of business connections.
Cloud-based spend management firm Coupa wants to help untangle that web. The company announced the broad launch of its Supplier Information Management service, a tool that helps businesses organize the data from their suppliers and integrate that information into their existing spend management portal.
The tool, known as SIM, helps businesses aggregate information on their suppliers. It’s coupled with Coupa’s Open Business Network, an online portal that allows buyers and suppliers to transact online and streamline the procure-to-pay process; data from suppliers is automatically captured from those transactions and exchanges.
According to the company, opening up its SIM tool was a response to client demand.
“During Coupa customer advisory board meetings, customers described the challenges of managing supplier data through legacy applications,” the firm said in its announcement. “They shared stories of suppliers ignoring information requests and also of continually chasing suppliers for information, thus resulting in excessive efforts and cost.”
Corporate buyers can organize the suppliers in their SIM by country, commodity and other segments and include information, like financial information, contact information, tax forms and the like.
“We’re introducing an industry-disruptive concept of right-time participation, where supplier data requests are imbedded into the natural buying and invoicing process, resulting in higher completion rates with less efforts,” said Coupa Vice President of Strategy and Product Marketing Donna Wilczek in a statement.
The company pointed to heightened supplier relationships and a lessened burden of manual processes for accounts payable and vendor management professionals. The portal also helps businesses to maintain regulatory compliance for things like tax purposes, reports said.