E-Procurement in What Language?

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E-Procurement in What Language?
A. Turner - May18, 2000

Event Summary

In April, PeopleSoft announced general availability of PeopleSoft eProcurement 2.0, a PeopleSoft e-business application providing access to B2B trading exchanges. PeopleSoft eProcurement 2.0 supports large multinational organizations with numerous suppliers by offering multi-organization functionality, enhanced workflow, multi-currency and multi-language capabilities.

PeopleSoft eProcurement 2.0 extends enterprise systems to B2B exchanges and the Commerce One Global Trading Web. The PeopleSoft solution delivers authorized purchasing capabilities to employees and leverages organizations' buying power with preferred suppliers. A Website-like interface encourages users to take advantage of the solution without having to be trained, thus potentially lowering the total cost of ownership.

PeopleSoft eProcurement 2.0 extends beyond MRO purchasing by providing seamless integration to the PeopleSoft Supply Chain Management master item catalog. This allows one-stop shopping for both supplier and internally sourced requests.

The application allows users to cut implementation time and cost by linking with PeopleSoft enterprise systems via newly developed Enterprise Integration Points. New integration touch points leverage a common set of business rules included in PeopleSoft's Payables, Projects, Asset Management, and Receiving, as well as Purchasing and Human Resources components.

Market Impact

"PeopleSoft eProcurement 2.0 is PeopleSoft's latest on-ramp to B2B," said Mike Frandsen, vice president and general manager of PeopleSoft's supply chain division. "The solution's Internet-based integration capabilities link organizations' enterprise systems to B2B exchanges quickly and cost effectively. The application's ease of use allows large organizations to fully leverage their buying power. The end result is the opportunity to dramatically reduce procurement costs."

PeopleSoft's has taken a slightly different approach in comparison to its competitor SAP. SAP's "mySAP.com" has chosen to build and define their own marketplace based on existing clients. Through their "Business Directory" SAP intends to create its own exchange with connectivity to outside exchanges as a secondary objective. In contrast, PeopleSoft's eProcurement 2.0 is actively addressing and leveraging connectivity to external marketplaces. In the long term, this discussion is moot. Inevitably clients will demand connectivity to all exchanges that benefit their company. In the short term, ERP vendors continue to develop, or partner, in an effort to deliver full service procurement solutions.

User Recommendations

If you are considering PeopleSoft's eProcurement 2.0 offering, investigate their latest development carefully. Integration of multi-lingual and multi-currency support is no small challenge. Out of the box, it is important to understand what features (languages) are supported. Before implementing, we recommend understanding how the currencies are synchronized across the applications. With markets and currency valuations fluctuating on a daily basis it is important to understand how the application normalizes data. The availability of multi-lingual and multi-currency capabilities from PeopleSoft is attractive, however it is important to understand the depth and complexity of their latest offering.

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