Recently, we’ve been running a series of posts spotlighting the needs and interests of different types of analytics users in the enterprise.
In our most recent post, we featured Allison, an inquisitive mergers and acquisitions analyst for an international bank who has exceptional analytical skills and domain expertise.
In her role, Allison needs to be able to conduct deep analyses to uncover essential insights about prospective acquisition targets without having to rely on IT for the information.
In our latest chapter, we examine the analytical needs of Paula, a shrewd purchasing manager for a large logistics provider, who has negotiated over 100 contracts for the company during her 12-year tenure with the company.
Paula, who has a fantastic eye for details, has been instructed by her boss, a recently-installed VP of finance, to evaluate each of the company’s contracts.
Her boss wants Paula to identify opportunities to cut costs and to find attractive alternatives in the market that offer good value and no hidden costs.
Paula, a tough negotiator who can at times be antagonistic when haggling with vendors, wants to impress her new boss in the hopes of snaring a hefty raise.
She wants to prove to her boss and other company executives that she’s capable of landing the company gold-level support from the technology, distribution, office services, and other companies the logistics provider does business with, at silver-level or even bronze-level pricing.
Paula, who oversees a team of four purchasing specialists, isn’t interested in entering into long-term partnerships with the companies that support the firm.
She’s primarily interested in landing low-cost transactions, yet Paula also wants to lock in attractive future pricing where she’s able to achieve it. She also doesn’t want to be surprised by hefty invoices – she wants to help the company attain a more consistent cost structure.
To help her accomplish these goals, Paula is looking for a predictive analytics tool that offers a number of capabilities.
She needs a predictive analytics tool that will allow her and her staff to analyze the state of the market and develop a keen understanding of price points and contractual options being offered by top providers for each of the products and services the company procures (including technology, communications, distribution, shipping, building services, etc.).
Paula wants to be able to demonstrate to her boss and company executives that she and her team arre able to comb the market for the best possible deals and use these insights to gain negotiating leverage with existing suppliers.
Paula is also seeking an analytics platform that provides data visualization features that enable her to view and compare the strengths and weaknesses of the potential providers. She also wants to be able to do deep dives into the details of existing contracts to identify opportunities to pare costs in future deals.
In our next installment, we’ll examine the analytical needs of Larry, a corporate attorney for a diversified energy services provider who wants to protect the company from risk and liability and ensure that all contracts and service-level agreements with external entities are favorable to the company.
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