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Streamline Spend with SAP Analytics Cloud

November 30, 2020

Blog
Author
Maddie Martin Maddie Martin
Maddie Martin is a Content Specialist on the Digital Strategy Team.

It’s no secret that keeping company costs on track is a challengeWith different departments, varied types of spending, and complex supply chains it’s paramount that decision makers can see all spend data in one intuitive dashboard. Unfortunately, this isn’t the reality for many companies. Top procurement executives report siloes and limited visibility into spend as key obstacles in their spend processes. 

 It's clear that future success for companies depends heavily on improving spend visibility. But how can that be achieved? Consider combining SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Data Warehouse Cloud with your SAP Concur, SAP Ariba, and SAP Fieldglass solutions. This combination of solutions can help you break down organizational siloes, improve visibility into spend throughout your entire organization and harmonize spend policies with SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Data Warehouse Cloud.  

Meet Angela: Procurement Manager and SAP Ariba User

Let’s take Angela, a procurement manager at Best Run Bikes as an example. Angela loves watching sports in her free time, but when she’s at work Angela is all about procuring products and goods for use at Best Run Bikes. She’s responsible for identifying potential supplier sources, keeping track of spend on procurement, and strategizing and negotiating with suppliers and vendors. Right now, Angela is trying to get a handle on how much Best Run Bikes is really spending, and what they’re spending money on, before her end of year report is due.  

woman working in office with colleagues also working at their desks.

Currently, Best Run Bikes uses SAP Ariba for managing spendSpecifically, they use SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing and SAP Ariba Invoice Management. While Angela finds Ariba useful for managing some spend processes, there are a few areas where she has run into challenges:  

  • Data across multiple systems: Angela has spend data in many different SAP and non-SAP sources, but she needs to see all of it in one place where she can easily extract insights.  
  • Visibility into the whole organization: To accurately report on where Best Run Bike’s money is being spent, Angela needs visibility into the whole organization. She knows that approximately 40-45% of Best Run Bike’s revenue is related to procurement, so its integral the Angela can see where the company's money is being spent to recommend effective cost cutting.  
  • Siloed departments: Right now, Angela can only see departments in siloes, so she can’t accurately assess whether KPI’s are being hit across the organization.  

Breaking Down Barriers with SAP Analytics Cloud

To address these challenges, Angela decides to purchase a subscription to SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Data Warehouse Cloud to address her data visualization and data combining needs.  

Harmonizing Spend Data

To get started, Angela connects all of her SAP sources, such as SAP Ariba, as well as her non-SAP data sources to SAP Data Warehouse Cloud with the help of her IT team. She is then able to leverage SAP Data Warehouse Cloud’s modeling capabilities to connect different datasets related to organizational spend. This first step sets Angela up for success, as she is now able to connect data sets from different sources in one place. This harmonization of data makes it painless for Angela to see all relevant spend data in her SAP Analytics Cloud dashboard.  

Saying No to Siloes

Angela envisions a dashboard where she can view the entire organizations spend data in one place. SAP Analytics Cloud makes this a realityTo create her total spend dashboard, Angela works with SAP Analytics Cloud connected to SAP Data Warehouse Cloud. Using SAP Analytics Cloud’s intuitive chart creation features she sets up visualizations showing spend amounts by cost center, spend amounts by type and commodity, as well as by each department and more. Additionally, she creates a chart showing overall trends per month. Now, with all of Best Run Bikes overall spend information in one place, it’s obvious which departments are meeting their compliance and spending KPI’s. 

screenshot of sap analytics cloud dashboard showing various charts and graphs with financial data.

But Angela doesn’t have to search through the dashboard to find out if departments are on track to meet their spend goals. She can easily view multiple department numbers in a single chart, filter and drill-down to focus on specific areas, as well as use SAP Analytics Cloud's alert features if certain thresholds are passed. 

Gaining Visibility

Diving deeper, Angela sets up more pages within her story. These each give more detail of where Best Run Bikes money is going. For example, the spend compliance page shows on and off contract spend per supplier and cost center. If Angela sees that off contract spend is very high for the year, she can quickly and easily see more detail by looking at the breakdown of where off contract spending is occurring. 

In this case, Angela sees that one of her biggest suppliers is particularly high in off contract spend, she can also see that her European cost center uses this supplier quite heavily.  By using SAP Analytics Cloud’s predictive featuresAngela can see the forecast of how much money will be lost if this trend continues. Having granularity and business user friendly forecasting all in one place makes it simple for Angela to see exactly how and where money is being spent and what action to take. 

Angela can also set up dashboards for working capital, productivity, purchase requisitions and more. With all of her spend data connected to SAP Analytics Cloud she has ultimate visibility into exactly where money is being spent, and whether it is being spent in compliance with company policies. This is a game changer for Angela. It is now simple for her to find inefficiencies and recommend cost cutting measures that will work for Best Run Bike’s bottom line.  

What's Next?

After solving her spend challenges with SAP Analytics Cloud, Angela sees the possibilities for integration in more of Best Run Bikes spend processes. This could mean diving into travel spending, HR spendingintegrating with other financial processes, and more.

Interested in streamlining your spend processes? See what SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Data Warehouse Cloud can do for you.