Source-to-Pay Operations: The key to cutting costs and boosting satisfaction

  • Employee Experience
  • Solutions
  • 2023
  • Mark Labedz
August 02, 2023

Source-to-pay: group of workers with devices collaborating

Since we launched Finance and Supply Chain Workflows in May, I've had a lot of conversations with ServiceNow customers. They want to know how we're applying the Now Platform to address the challenges their business stakeholders have been facing across the source-to-pay process.

ServiceNow Source-to-Pay Operations automates and organizes the work of procurement—from onboarding suppliers and managing indirect procurement requests to confirming receipt and paying suppliers for products or services delivered. It bridges systems, teams, and data sources, and even brings external stakeholders onto a single platform to simplify and accelerate processes.

An easier, more efficient way to work

Almost all companies today rely on a patchwork of systems to address the various needs and tasks in the source-to-pay process. Navigating different systems and figuring out processes or statuses can be frustrating for employees and suppliers.

For procurement professionals, it involves too many manual processes, especially around data entry. Every manual step slows your current process and introduces opportunities for workarounds. It’s no wonder companies struggle to increase the amount of spend under management.

There’s an easier, more efficient way for your employees to work. Source-to-Pay Operations consists of three products:

  1. Sourcing and Procurement Operations automates the source-to-receipt process for seamless purchasing and case management across teams, allowing sourcing and procurement to focus on strategic priorities such as building a higher-quality supplier base and negotiating more favorable contracts.

  2. Supplier Lifecycle Operations enables you to quickly onboard suppliers, effortlessly manage supplier data, add key supplier contacts, monitor supplier performance, and enhance productivity of the teams that engage with suppliers so your teams can do more, more easily, without a corresponding increase in headcount.

  3. Accounts Payable Operations helps finance departments simplify and coordinate the activities required to pay suppliers accurately—from matching invoices to purchase orders and goods receipts to approvals and payment release—so your organization can pay confidently and improve supplier relations.

Empowering employees

Source-to-pay stakeholders, such as procurement, receiving, and accounts payable, can now focus on more strategic activities:

  • Optimizing spend

  • Achieving more responsible sourcing and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals 

  • Forming a higher-quality, more resilient supplier base

  • Confidently paying suppliers accurately and on time

This is the intended work of teams across the source-to-pay process. It’s why you hired them, and it’s what they want to do. Too often, though, employees are overwhelmed with status request emails or manual data entry tasks that burn time and energy without adding value to the business.

Source-to-Pay Operations alleviates the tedium so that your employees want to follow established procurement processes, procurement professionals have more time to focus on value-adding activities, and suppliers are kept in the loop. With Source-to-Pay Operations, you can:

  • Double the number of requests and suppliers handled by your procurement team

  • Uncover discounting opportunities by consolidating spend and taking advantage of early-payment discounts

  • Raise supplier quality and reduce fraud with embedded ESG and risk management

  • Create a better experience for all with one easy-to-use environment for getting work done

Connecting systems and increasing value

If you're a Now Platform owner, this may sound familiar. We use the core technologies from the platform—workflows, case management, AI—and apply them to the procurement space.

If you're a procurement professional, think of ServiceNow as a one-stop shop to help an employee get work done. Source-to-Pay Operations connects to and augments underlying systems such as enterprise resource planning (ERP) or sourcing solutions so you get more value from existing investments while simultaneously making life easier for your employees.

ServiceNow Finance and Supply Chain Workflows are a recognition of and response to the idea that we need new and better ways to compose the business systems that span teams, applications, and data streams. Now you can say yes to both cutting costs and increasing employee satisfaction.

Find out more about Finance and Supply Chain Workflows.

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