Supplier Portals for Better Supplier Collaboration and Adoption
Sheyna: All right. Hi everybody. We’re at the top of the hour. I’m going to go ahead and get started here. If you’re just joining, you’ll get caught up. So first of all, I just want to say hello. My name is Sheyna Webster. I’m the Content Marketing Manager here at SourceDay. I want welcome everybody to our webinar today. It’s the second webinar in our summer series, Supplier Portals for Better Collaboration and Adoption. We’ve got a great group of speakers today who are really excited to talk with you guys about how our customers are improving supplier collaboration and management with SourceDay.
Just a few housekeeping items first. Please feel free to ask questions or provide comments throughout the webinar. You can do that via the chat function or the Q&A function in Zoom. I will be monitoring those and we’re going to do a Q&A with the panelists at the end of their presentation. So, stick around for that. If you have any audio or video issues throughout the webinar, please feel free to send me a chat and I can try to help you out. You can also try leaving and rejoining the webinar, that tends to fix it sometimes. And last but not least, please don’t forget that a recording of this webinar will be sent out afterwards. So, if you miss something or you have to leave early, don’t worry. In a couple days, you’ll get a recording of the webinar in your inbox. With all of that being said, again, please send out your questions to me on the chat or Q&A throughout the webinar. We’re really excited that you all are here. And I’m going to hand it off to our panelists, Christine, Clint, and Tom.
Christine: Hi, welcome to the webinar. My name is Christine McAvoy. I’m the Director of Customer Success at SourceDay. We are very excited to talk to you guys about supplier portals, better supplier collaboration and adoption, and what makes SourceDay so great at all of the above. Clint?
Clint: Thank you, Christine. Hi everyone. This is my second event in the summer series of webinars we’re doing, and I’m really excited about this one. If you weren’t on the first one, my name is Clinton McRee. I’m one of the co-founders of SourceDay. I also handle all of our partner relationships here. Really looking forward to this topic today. Tom?
Tom: Thank you, Christine and Clint. I’m Tom Kieley, one of the other co-founders and the CEO and I’m excited to be here today. This topic is near and dear to Clint and I’s hearts. This is the whole reason we co-founded SourceDay and got it off the ground to begin with, I’m so excited to talk to everyone today.
Christine: Awesome. So, one of the things that I know we hear a lot when we’re talking about supplier adoption and specifically SourceDay, is a lot of concern around why portals fail. People bring to us experiences they’ve had in the past. I’d love to hear from you guys why it is that you think the traditional supplier portal is not successful?
Clint: So, I’ll take that. And Tom, I know you have a lot to add to this. First and foremost, you know, I think the most important thing that’s the reason why portals fail is because of supplier adoption. When you think about it, there are really two main things that have to take place: you’ve got the software solution, which is the portal itself. That has to be purchased. It has to be configured. It has to be customized to some level, and there are definitely costs in there, but that’s really the beginning of what it takes. You’ve got to bring on those suppliers, right? So, if a customer has 100 suppliers that they want to leverage the portal, somebody has to manage setting up those accounts and training those users on how to do it.
Then someone has to follow up and make sure they’re using it. That typically falls into IT. IT has to take on that responsibility, which – generally speaking – is a big task. They don’t want to do it, don’t have the resources to do it. So that’s probably the main reason that I’ve seen when talking to customers as to why they’ve taken a traditional portal and not be able to deploy it successfully.
Tom: That’s spot on. I think if you look at history, supplier portals have come and gone for decades and many of them failed fast. I think the ultimate reason is supplier portals aren’t built for suppliers. They’re never built for their ease of use. They’re never built for their adoption. They’re never built to be user-friendly for a supplier, and they almost never add value to a supplier. We looked to flip that script and we invested as much if not more in portals on the supplier side as we do on our buyer’s side. Ultimately, putting in that level of attention to detail and usability for suppliers makes it more valuable to them. It gives them the value they need to actually care.
Christine: Absolutely. A lot of our suppliers tell us when we reach out to them to ask how it’s going that no one’s ever asked them that before. We definitely hear that a lot. So, thinking about SourceDay and your vision for what it was going to be, what is it about the way that we do things and the way that SourceDay operates that makes us different from the average ERP supplier portal?
Clint: Oh, that’s a big question. There’s so many things to it. When you look at the software itself, there’s specific things in the software that are very geared toward the needs of our customers: you have direct spend and you have suppliers and you really care about supplier performance and materials showing up on time. Those features and functionality are available in the portal. We built that out to solve those deeper supply chain problems. And then, you know, just still kind of leaning on the supplier piece of it, to Tom’s point, you have to have the ability for suppliers to use a solution that’s easy to use, easy to adopt for this type of thing to be successful.
Tom: Then again, you know, Clint nailed it with all those responses, right? Which is why we do what we do. The focus and the attention to really making it so that suppliers can be held accountable in the platform, as much as a buyer could be held accountable. We do a lot around data and analytics and insights that track performance of not only a supplier but also a buyer buying inside or outside of lead times, their own responsiveness and ultimately creating a performance scorecard on the supplier side down to the line-item level that shows actionable and objective insights into a supplier’s behavior and impact the risk to your business. Those data points are all but unattainable if you’re living in Excel and email, and what Clint used to love, which is sticky notes all over the floor, where you might miss an update because you wrote it on a sticky note and it got thrown away.
Those are true stories, and we’ve eliminated those by building a purpose-built solution, not only for the buyer side of the supply chain but also for the suppliers. We’re also ERP agnostic. Being agnostic is a requirement; it’s sort of table stakes. We’ve got organizations that are growing through acquisition and they’re acquiring companies that run different ERPs and we can turn up a successful supplier portal or SourceDay, if you will, in 30 to 90 days, no matter what you’re working on. It could take them years to migrate those ERP systems to their standard solution. So, they can have much faster integration through acquisitions to start tracking and performance around that supply chain. A tremendous amount of thought, and product roadmap, and strategy goes into making the portal more than just what the old portals were.
Clint: You know, what’s really interesting is where we are now, Tom, compared to where we were when we started. It’s really interesting to see how the platform has developed and the problems that we solve today that we weren’t even really thinking about back then. But the core problems that we solved early on are still rampant with our customers. I get asked sometimes about, well, what made you start SourceDay? For those of you who don’t know, I ran a manufacturing company for 10 years. Tom mentioned that earlier; we had thousands of parts that we were buying every month, and every single month a supplier would let us down or wouldn’t show up so we could build something. And that was bad enough, but what made it even worse is that we were managing all that in spreadsheets. And the thing I said in the last webinar, I think is true for this webinar too, is almost as soon as you send or print a spreadsheet or a PDF or a document, it’s almost guaranteed that it’s outdated and wrong.
And so, when you start thinking about how ridiculous it is that we can take our phones and send money to our kids through an app, we can cut a million-dollar PO and send it to our supplier and have no visibility into the fact that the supplier has it is almost comical. That original use case is what led us to do what we do. It’s just hard to believe that customers are still doing this, but it’s true. So, there’s a lot of opportunity there.
Tom: And Christine, I apologize, Christine. I said…
Christine: Oh, no, hearing that made me think specifically of JBT AeroTech, a customer of ours, who’s partnering with SourceDay. They saw their missing parts go from 33% to 8%. And thinking of Clint’s sticky notes, thinking of tracking all of this stuff in an email and the stress that that can cause a buyer and giving them the ability to streamline that is one of the things that we get really excited about as the customer success team because we get to hear feedback from our users as to, “I now know where things are at. I don’t feel like I’m chasing so many missing parts down.”
Tom: And I’ll add onto that, and say, you know, it’s dangerous to get Clint and I on the same webinar, because we could probably talk and rattle on for hours because we are truly passionate about this. We’ve been doing this for many years now and have great success stories like JBT, like you mentioned, who’ve been with us for many years, and we’re grateful for them and all of our customers. One of the things I’d like to talk to analysts and others about is customer and supplier adoption. The opposite side of that is that buyers are the unsung heroes of organizations. Oftentimes, IT or the organization itself will focus on sales. Let’s generate a sales-run organization. It’s all about sales contests and sales comp and sales has the most fun, but you can’t have any of that without a successful buying organization.
And the buyers are living in Excel and email. They’ve not been given the tools for success outside of the ERP system. They’re chasing suppliers down through manual processes. So JBT was a good example of, giving a great organization and their buying organization a tool to be even better than what they were so they could achieve those reductions in late parts and missing parts through automation and workflows and have a system that makes them more strategic as an employee to the organization rather than living in Excel and email, and not being able to really drive value at the level that they should be with their strategic role.
Clint: You know, Tom, you said something that I think is kind of interesting that I also want to add to. When we see customers that are looking to adopt a supplier portal or go to SourceDay or whatever solution they’re looking at, one of the things that they’ve started to think about is they’re looking at suppliers differently. Instead of looking at a supplier as someone that just sends me parts and I’m going to beat them up on price, they start to look at them as stakeholders. When companies buy an ERP solution, the ones that we integrate with, and since we’re agnostic, we integrate with lots of them, they buy an ERP solution so that all the key stakeholders in their company can run the business as efficiently as possible. Whether you’re a manufacturer or a distributor, or a consumer products company, these ERPs help you run the business and help those stakeholders make the decisions. But what’s really ironic is that for most companies who have not really looked at the supplier as a stakeholder, they are stakeholders that are completely disconnected from the business. The ones that have been successful like JBT and Napoleon, the list goes on and on, ILOG, you know, those type companies, they actually see a supplier as strategic. They see them as stakeholders and they want them connected to the business so they can be a part of their growth and their strategy.
Christine: One of the things that we hear a lot from suppliers when they’re giving us feedback is there are so many different portals, but this is the easiest one to use. When you guys were trialing SourceDay, when you were thinking about the supplier side and using it and wanting to make it easier for them, what were some of those thoughts that you were having, or Clint, your experience of saying, I know a supplier has literally told me that’s what would make SourceDay better for them?
Clint: Well, you guys know through all the training that I’ve given, probably every employee we’ve hired is, I call it the portal wars. Customers want to deploy portals and suppliers want to deploy portals, and everybody wants to use their portal. At the end of the day, that model just doesn’t scale. What SourceDay’s vision was early on, it was an architecture decision we made, which was to be what I call multiplexed. That allows both our customers and our suppliers to use SourceDay, to have one log-in into SourceDay, whether you’re a customer or whether you’re a supplier and you can support multiple customers and multiple suppliers. If you look at one of the ERPs on the market that we deal with, they’ve got 5,000 customers that run their ERP.
Well, with each one of those customers deployed the ERP’s portal and the supplier was supplying parts to all 5,000 of those customers. The supplier would have to log into 5,000 systems. I mean, that doesn’t scale. But with the SourceDay model, we can connect all 5,000 customers and that supplier could be logged in with one email address and manage all 5,000 customers. So that was an early decision we made that was very strategic, that I think has majorly paid dividends. And the second part I’ll say to that, I know Tom wants to add to this as well, is when we add new customers into our worlds, we bring in a new customer to our family, there’s already a good chance that their suppliers are already using SourceDay, and we don’t really actually have to onboard them. Although we do that as a part of our service, we’re going to talk about that later, but there’s a good chance their suppliers are already using SourceDay, which is a win-win.
Tom: I think you hit all of the points I would have made. It’s critical to be able to have a single platform for all of your suppliers. A true single and multi-tenant SaaS platform that can really mold to workflows on both the buyer side and the supplier side, as it relates to acknowledgments and writing back into the ERP systems, and then the ability to manage ASN workflows and other aspects that you require different data points from suppliers, across different organizations. We have one customer that’s running 20 sites and 2 different ERP systems and probably a dozen different versions of each of those ERP systems, and we’re able to roll all of that data across all of their sites and all of their ERPs into a consolidated view for data and analytics and insights, and also for them to have better supplier accountability and visibility into demand across the organization. It’s an incredible value to organizations, large and small, to be able get that adoption and visibility to supplier success.
Christine: Yeah, absolutely. And Clint you touched on… suppliers don’t necessarily sign up with SourceDay without their own questions. There is a process behind it. You had a big hand in this and building out the way that the supplier success team works. I’d love for you to share some of our mentality around that and what sets us apart specifically with that team and the goals they’re trying to achieve.
Clint: Thanks for asking that. You know, it’s really interesting, you make a lot of decisions early on, some are good, right Tom? and some are bad. But I will say one of the decisions we made around suppliers and helping our customers own that adoption piece was pretty critical. You know, our software, I think really any supplier portal, if you do not offer some sort of service around supplier adoption is one of the main reasons why they don’t… We kind of talked about that. When we started day one with SourceDay, we said, we want to build a world-class software application that does all the things that Tom was talking about in terms of giving analytics and helping companies perform better. But we also knew we had to layer in or surround that software with a managed services division for user adoption. And most of what we do there is supplier adoption.
Today what we do when we work with a brand new customer is they typically have a list of their suppliers. It could be a set of primary suppliers or it could be all their suppliers, and they provide that list to us. We use people and some tools and some automation to actually reach out to those suppliers. We help set their accounts up for them. We actually offer them training. So, we’ll provide some training for those suppliers, and we sort of help them, hand-hold them into the platform, white-glove treatment, if you will, into the platform to get them to help adopt the solution. Along the way, we’ve learned a lot of things. Right, Tom? Today, I’d say we’re pretty good at supplier adoption. We have over 10,000 suppliers that are in SourceDay and leveraging it today. A lot of that is because we take a lot of the ownership of onboarding those suppliers in the platform for our customers.
Tom: When you say people, one of the things that brings me back is, like any good organization you have a history, and those people used to be Clint and I. And I remember doing daily and weekly webinars…
Clint: Yeah, that’s true.
Tom: …and onboarding suppliers, and really cutting our teeth to figure out, what is the best process to really automate this? Over time, we’ve been fortunate to reach some great scale where we now have incredible people that have created automation and workflows in our platform and third-party solutions that are now doing most of the onboarding of suppliers primarily through an automated process at first, and then some of that people touch to really get to the last mile to ensure success and ensure adoption. Their success equates to our customer’s success, which is why we exist. Without suppliers, who would have a successful business?
A lot of time and thought and investment and resources has gone into getting to this point. And when we say 10,000 suppliers, that number may seem small relative to some of the other portals, but those 10,000 supplier organizations are supporting direct spend materials – a much different segment of your typical P2P marketplace or portal. Those suppliers are logging in daily and weekly and monthly to acknowledge purchase orders, push updates into the system through bulk uploads, and ensure that any exceptions or misses are being managed in real-time so that they can actually meet customer expectations all the way downstream to end customers.
Clint: Hey, Tom, I have two questions for Tom. So, the first question is, what’s the number one question we hear from new companies we’re talking to, new customers and prospects? It’s a test. It’s an on-flight test.
Tom: This is almost automatic. Every time we get on a call with prospects and at some point in the sales cycle, they’ll say either, “Will my suppliers adopt? My suppliers will never adopt.” And we’ve never had a customer through our guarantees, cancel or opt out through their contract period because of missing an adoption target.
Clint: That’s amazing how customers go to that pretty quickly. You know, even when we’re at a conference or something, and someone comes over, run through this, the very first question they ask is, you know, “The software looks amazing, and this would really help out a lot, but are my suppliers actually going to use it?” So, it’s a pretty good feeling that we’ve got so many suppliers on there. My second question to you is, how does it feel to you when we get a five-star review for one of our supplier users?
Tom: It’s funny. I was actually just pulling one up because I was going to try and read the quote, but it’s incredible, right? I think it’s a testament to our team more than anything. We can sit here and sugar coat it, but the truth is it wasn’t easy, right? It’s certainly not automatic from day one. We’ve had to iterate and build processes and go to a ton of technology and invest in our platform and our people and third-party solutions to make this successful. So, every time we see a five-star supplier review, which I believe we’ve got just a handful of them in the last week, it’s just a testament to the effort and the attention we put into that aspect of our business, which mitigates that whole question that we get on every call, we just send them to the supplier reviews. We let them speak to suppliers. We have them go talk to their suppliers. In many cases, their suppliers are already in our platform.
Clint: Again, it goes back to something early on, we had the supplier in mind when we built SourceDay. We wanted to make sure the suppliers had an easy-to-use interface to adopt. And when you get a five-star review saying, this is the easiest platform I’ve ever used, it makes it all worth it. And like you said, it wasn’t easy to get there, but, you know, that’s a testament to all of our company, really, and the people that go through the supplier adoption with us.
Christine: Definitely, I know for our team that it continues on. We don’t want them just in the system for the sake of saying they’re there. We want them to be using it and we want them to be using it correctly. A lot of the customer success group is focused on that adoption and really maintaining that. And then also looking at a supplier that’s maybe hesitant or has concerns, and just seeing a person that wants to do a good job. They don’t want to fall behind. They want to make sure they’re meeting your expectations. And so we just need to help them see that. Sometimes the ones that have the most questions are also the fastest adopters that get in, spread the word, help their team, and are a huge asset to our group.
Clint: Christine, how much do we charge for suppliers to use SourceDay, I kind of forgot.
Christine: I thought you knew. Nothing! We always get asked that. If you want 100 users, if you want every person at your company to have an account, we welcome it. And yeah, there’s no cost to the supplier.
Clint: That’s awesome. I just wanted to double check.
Tom: And I think some of the analytics and insights that we give to suppliers is data that most users that are working with purchase orders wouldn’t ever be able to capture or be able to see the risk that they’re potentially driving in their customers to predict potential churn or loss of a customer, or a bad experience ahead of time, and it’s incredible. They can actually get data points at a supplier organization that can help keep customer satisfaction higher for themselves. And it’s at no cost.
Christine: And they’re going to hold you accountable. We have our suppliers that will ping their buyer and say, this is showing as late, and I’m showing it as it’s shipped and received. So go into your ERP and clean that up. They’ll hold you guys accountable for sure.
Tom: Absolutely, data quality is critical, right? You can’t have an ERP system report data. I haven’t seen an ERP system that didn’t have poor data until SourceDay.
Clint: Well, you know, you bring up a really good point on the data. We can have a whole other sidebar conversation on that, but you know, when I go to user groups and conferences, and I even said this, I think in the first webinar we did this summer, is we have…we go around all these different groups and customers. And the number one complaint we hear about any ERP is the data, people do not trust the data and the system. It’s not an ERP issue. The software itself is fine. It’s truly good solid technology, but the data in it is wrong. And when you start to think about the origination of some of the data and decisions that a business has to make for production for customer deliveries, maybe even all the way up to the board, a lot of that starts with what information is in your supply chain.
You can’t produce something or ship something if you don’t have it. And so, you are relying on the system to tell you when something is going to arrive from a supplier world. If that information is wrong, then every decision you make downstream is going to be wrong. And so if we…you know, cleaning up, and this is one of the reasons why I think companies should use portals, whether it’s SourceDay or not, is you really need to connect that supplier into your environment, because if you don’t, then you’re having to manually update that information and it’s not being done correctly or at all, you’ve got incorrect data. Now, one thing we do know, in doing this for this many years, because we have millions of purchase orders that flow through SourceDay year in and year out, is that 52% of purchase orders change.
And so, as soon as you cut an order, if you cut two orders, one of those is going to change at some point. And that means if you do not follow through with that, and that change does not get inputted into your ERP, that means your production information is going to be off. Probably your customer delivery information is going to be off and even is linked to AP. So now when suppliers start to send you invoices and you’re trying to pay those invoices against POs, but the PO information is wrong, that stuff doesn’t match, you can’t voucher it, and the bottleneck problem just continues to flow through the organization. Data integrity and accuracy is hugely important to driving your business forward in an efficient way.
Christine: So one of the things, I think, just hearing all of this and thinking of a customer that ties this all together is Chatsworth. So, everyone who’s worked at SourceDay, you’ve probably worked with them at some point in time. They’re a really great group we work with, but when they came to us, they had previously been using another portal. So definitely having the experience of what makes this different. They had many of the pain points that we know go across customers. And ultimately through partnering with them and working together, we’ve seen a huge impact in their day-to-day. Clint and Tom, I’d love to hear from you guys about the changes they’ve seen and how that makes you guys feel?
Clint: Let me jump in because I worked very closely with Chatsworth early on. The folks at Chatsworth already had a solution. Christine, you mentioned that. And so, they didn’t need to be convinced that they needed a portal, but their particular portal was not going to be supported any longer. And they were forced to make a decision. I will say, I think the main difference though, and why we not only won their business, but they’ve seen the success they’ve had, is it’s not just about sharing static information with your suppliers, like, “Here’s your PO, take it or leave it.” It’s about sharing… what we’re doing is sharing information with suppliers and helping drive action, helping bubble up management by exception. If you cut 100 POs this month, 90 of them are probably going to be fine. They’re not going to need to be touched again, or maybe 48% of them won’t be. We already know 52% will be, but the point is that we’re bubbling up for them the purchase orders that are potentially going to be trouble for them, suppliers that might be issues for them. And that’s really the huge difference. And that’s why they’ve been able to see things like 66% reduction with, 70% reduction in late supplier deliveries. Those are things because SourceDay is helping them not only automate a lot of these tasks but bubble up issues for them so they can take action early.
Tom: Clint brings up some incredible points, right? Chatsworth is another one of our amazing customer success stories. And we love working with them. And the fact that they had already had experience with a portal was telling, in that they knew that they had a problem that was worth solving, that they had a supply chain that could continually improve. And Clint mentioned a great point, right? It’s not just about data insights and analytics. It’s not just about shoving PO data back and forth. It’s really about creating actionable data and workflows around the change. To highlight and bring to the surface those POs, those lines, those releases that represent a risk to your business and to your cash flows and to your revenue targets. Without that visibility, you’re really just chasing down parts after the fact when they don’t show up at the dock. We’ve been able to completely change their business from one portal to our portal and drastically improve it even further.
Christine: Awesome. So I’ll leave you guys with this, this last question, but if you were talking to someone and they were seeing the way that we’re doing things right now is fine, we feel like we’re moving this. What bit of advice would you give a prospect that’s saying I’m thinking about making a change, if it’s hesitant not to. Why act sooner rather than later?
Clint: Here’s an interesting thing. And you know, Tom has heard me say this ad nauseam since we started SourceDay and this was certainly a problem for me when I was in manufacturing. I know these distributors and consumer product goods companies face the same thing. You don’t even have to go really too far on Google, to see the headlines of organizations having supply chain issues disrupt their business. I mean, you got Peloton, Chick-fil-A, Ford, GM, everyone is being impacted by some kind of supply chain disruption. What’s really interesting about supply chain and those disruptions is when we talk to customers, prospects that are trying to make a change, trying to fix some supply chain issues, is that just about everyone will agree that a supply chain disruption will impact their production and will likely impact their customers at some level, but hardly anybody, any company measures that.
One of the first things we’ve got to get them to agree to is that this is a problem. Yes, we do have a need here and we need to work more closely with that stakeholder who’s our supplier. We need ways and tools to be able to start thinking about that and measuring that, because once we measure it, then we can start tweaking it and fixing it and making it better. But that’s kind of the most interesting point that I’ve seen through and through is that they will agree that’s an issue, but very few measure it, and that’s something that they need to change. Once they start to measure it, they’ll see that it’s a huge impact for the business.
Tom: Then, you know, when you look at the stories that we read today, you know, I like to often talk about these supply chain issues aren’t new, right? It’s the advent of the Amazon effect that everything needs to be the same day, next hour, right, everyone’s mentality of give me this now has bubbled into the B2B world, all the way into the supply chain. And they’re living in Excel and email. They don’t have the visibility that Amazon gives a consumer to actually see where their product is in its delivery. When you move into the B2B world, and you’re trying to build a bus or part of a fuselage or a high-tech computer component, or even a piece of apparel, if you can’t find that piece of one cloth or dye or screw or nut, and you have no visibility to where it is, and you got to go spend days or weeks chasing it down, you are losing dollars in revenue. More importantly, you’re losing your customer’s faith, and they’re going to your competitors.
We’ve seen that time and time again, through all these news stories that are now becoming normal in the headlines. But the reality is those have been prevalent for decades. It’s just now become the topic of change. And the boardroom now saying, how do we fix our supply chains, because it’s the next thing in the digital revolution or an issue 4.0 to go and fix and digitize. And, you know, I continue to go back to what I said earlier, which is that buyers are the unsung heroes because since the beginning, they’ve been doing their entire process outside of an ERP system, in manual processes, email, fax, paper, pen, phone, texts, whatever they can do to get a hold of the supplier, that’s causing them to be late is in top of mind. And then it’s onto the next one all day, every day, right? They’re the unsung heroes. We’ve given a platform for them to be more successful and be more strategic and, you know, excited to be delivering that, continue to innovate.
Clint: You know, Tom, you said something there. I just want to add to as well as, you’ve mentioned supply chain is now being discussed in the boardroom. And I don’t want to just pass over that too quickly. You know, Christine, the question you asked, the other thing that I would definitely make sure that anyone interested in talking supply chain, addressing supply chain issues. Supply chain more than ever is being talked about in the boardroom, hopefully, our prospects that we’re dealing with are a part of that conversation. If they’re not, that’s a red flag, because I can almost guarantee you, someone is talking about it. So, they need to find that conversation and insert themselves into it because this is a big problem for the industry, it’s being discussed in the boardroom, whether you’re a small company or a large company. And so, now we’re seeing more than ever that supply chain is an issue, an area that businesses want to address.
Christine: Yeah. We’re hearing from a lot of customers, “I wish I had done this sooner.”
Christine: Well, thank you everyone for joining us today. We’re going to open up to some questions.
Sheyna: Hi everybody. So, our panelists are going to come on here and we’re going to go through a few questions that we got today. Hi everybody. All right. We got a few questions in chat and in Q&A, so to kick it off, we do have a question here. Is it possible to customize the SourceDay portal to unique and specific requirements? Who wants to take that?
Tom: I’ll go ahead and jump in there. I know Clint would probably want to as well, and Christine’s probably cringing right now, but you know, the reality is nobody does business the same way throughout every organization. To an extent the platform can be configurable. There’s workflows that can be unique based on your ERP and how data flows. And the typical customer scenario is that they just need to customize or configure data mapping and data schema, which is generally the most common. But we’d love to have that conversation with you offline to understand more about your business needs, understand what you’re trying to accomplish with a unique portal experience. And then also talk about best practices and really how SourceDay can build supplier adoption and supplier success and your success as an organization through the best practices. But the short answer is yes, to an extent, we won’t build a custom portal, but we’ll build you a solution that will work within your business requirements.
Clint: I’ll piggyback on that too. You know, we really didn’t get in to much of the feature set today and that’s not really the purpose of this webinar, but we really have three major modules. We have an RFQ module, we have a purchase order module, and we have an accounts payable, AP automation module that’s in SourceDay. With that are already quite a few pre-built workflows and processes that are probably going to check a lot of boxes for you, if not all of them. You know, sometimes we do run in some customization or some tweaks that we need to make. But you know, if that’s something that’s interesting to you, to Tom’s point, well, let’s set up a meeting outside of this and we can walk you through, you know, your business processes and see how much, you know, if there’s any customizations needed.
Christine: Then the only thing I’ll add is from my team is that a lot of it’s about learning verbiage. What might feel custom to you once we start to really talk about it, we can identify the pieces and say, oh, I know exactly what you’re trying to do. And here’s how SourceDay supports that today.
Sheyna: Awesome. Thanks, guys. So, another question we have here is, how does SourceDay exactly guarantee supplier adoption? Can you expand on how our customers know that their suppliers will adopt SourceDay?
Clint: Ooh, let me take that one. This actually was a project for me over the last couple years. I spent a lot of time on that last year. Look, as I said earlier in the webinar, we believe that for us to be successful and for our customers to be successful, that we really have to take care of the supplier adoption piece. It’s a big part of the success all the way around. And so how we guarantee it is, the guarantee is not something we did early on. It’s something that we’ve done over the last couple years. And it’s based off of the fact, what kind of Tom mentioned, we put quite a bit of people and process into the supplier adoption. We’ve become pretty good at it. We also have quite a few suppliers already on the platform.
We’ll talk to a new customer and they’ll have 50% to 75% of their suppliers already using SourceDay today. And so that adoption piece becomes easier and easier for us to do as we grow and expand as a business. But we also take the lead. We help our customers bring those suppliers on. We’re versed in training them. We’re versed in helping them with the questions that they typically have. We’re able to streamline that process quite a bit. We feel very comfortable in guaranteeing that your suppliers will adopt SourceDay. I’m sure Tom wants to piggyback on that.
Tom: No, I think you hit it. I think we have another one as well on supplier adoption. So go ahead and maybe I’ll add on that one.
Sheyna: Kind of a follow-up question, Clint, is what is the role of the buyers in the supplier adoption process? You know, we have that 90% why our adoption rate is there, are there any reasons for a supplier not to go with the platform?
Clint: I think that’s a Christine question above everyone.
Christine: I love it. I’m ready. No. So a big piece of what my team does is looks at buyer activity. A lot of times we work really early on to get a feel for who they are and make sure that they feel comfortable, what we call soft launch phase, the first 30 days of onboarding suppliers. I’ll let you guys in on a secret is really about your buyers. We want them to get confident. We want them to feel comfortable. We want it to feel very natural to work into their day. And then after that point, we’re ready to really have onboarding as many suppliers as you feel ready for. But again, we want solve sort of the pain points early so that they’re not living in two worlds for too long. And we have ways of looking, you know, if suppliers are struggling and it’s attached to a buyer, let’s get more training, let’s get one-on-one calls, let’s make sure that they have what they need. And again, a lot of times it’s just answering questions so that they feel confident and start to rely on SourceDay. And then usually from there, those are our strongest users because they do trust the system so much.
Clint: Well put.
Sheyna: Thanks so much, Christine. We actually have another question here. So what is the interaction with transportation providers and customs? Does the SourceDay portal create ASN with transport and customs content?
Tom: I’ll add on just a little bit, and Christine and Clint probably have some additional details here. So, you know, SourceDay does allow suppliers to bulk upload or create ASN from partial shipments, from partial purchase orders and also add visibility through freight tracking through modes and carriers, that will provide in SourceDay the actual real-time visibility of the freight. You know, the documentation that can also exist around ASNs is available. Depending on what your requirements are as a part of your workflows, this is a piece where SourceDay is continually adding more to the roadmap, and a major release coming in the next six weeks to continually innovate more for the supplier side of an ASN functionality to give better visibility, better trackability and traceability of that real-time freight from more modes and carriers. So that is possible today in the platform. We just need to determine what your workflows are for those suppliers.
Christine: And we’re seeing more dynamic users on our side. So, we’ve got people that are in receiving that are utilizing licenses to pop in and pull the ASNs and forecast. Hey, if we have a lot that’s coming in this weekend, are we fully staffed? Is this something that we need to, you know, add time to our group? It’s really interesting to see just how different departments are using ASNs.
Sheyna: Yeah. Awesome. Okay. So next question that we have here is…so it says, “We have several ERPs supported, can SourceDay support multi-sites with different ERPs?”
Clint: I’ll take that one and Tom can jump in. That was something that we decided early on. We do support different ERPs and so it can be a divisional thing. It could be intercompany thing. We do support the multi-ERPs. We also support multi-site. And just to layer on more, we also support on-premise and cloud. So, we’ve pretty much checked a box with all of the various versions that ERP exists today.
Sheyna: Perfect. Thank you, Clint. Let’s see, actually just got a question as I was about to read a different question. So, let’s do the one I was going to read, and then we’ll get to this one. What kind of managed services does SourceDay offer for onboarding suppliers?
Christine: I’ll take that one. Our team works really hand in hand. What I will say is we have tried and tested methods that we know work very well, but we also know that you are unique. And so, a lot of times what that comes with is conversations with you about what’s going to work best for your suppliers. We have templates that we provide, we have our own cadence, but we also factor in that some groups want be more hands-on. Especially if they’ve got really strong relationships with the suppliers, what we map out is a sort of collaborative effort. We have other groups that want to send an email and then let SourceDay run with it. And so, we do that, as well as having regular coordinated check-ins to make sure that you guys are up to date as to the progress. And we talk about who’s doing well, who needs help, who needs more users, and all of that. So that, again, you feel like I know how it’s going. And also there’s an exit. We don’t want you meeting with us every week for two years, but we want you to feel confident that your supplier base is in the platform and using it well.
Clint: I just want to piggyback on that too. When organizations are looking at a supplier portal – regardless of which one it is – one of the big challenges there is, it’s a resource hog. Most organizations, when they deploy a portal are probably going to have to tie up quite a few IT resources, maybe inter-office procurement resources and those kinds of things. And so that managed services piece that we’ve been talking about a little bit here, is very important when you’re looking at any solution that you work with a company that’s willing to take on that effort for you. One of the things that I can tell you just in looking at supplier adoption, we think of, okay, well, I buy from these 100 suppliers, I need to make sure these 100 suppliers are using SourceDay.
The reality is that your business is constantly changing, so next year you might have those same 100 suppliers, but you might have 20 different ones now. And so, when we’re doing supplier onboarding and helping you manage suppliers, this is something we’re doing throughout our relationship together. It never stops. It’s not a one-time event. It’s an ongoing thing. For IT organizations who are looking at portals that can be a major drain on their ability to support something like this. So that’s why it’s important to partner with a company that will help you along that way.
Sheyna: Great. We have a few more questions that have come in. One of them is, a few of our suppliers have their own order management platform, so they could see SourceDay as a duplication of their existing portals. How does SourceDay support the suppliers in their day-to-day operations?
Christine: Yeah, we use a couple of… Go ahead. Sorry.
Tom: No, go right ahead, Christine.
Christine: What I’ll say is we have a couple of different solutions that again, take that into account and make it easier for them to take both actions. I think too, especially in the era of COVID, and there are so many changes, as long as we’re coming and we’re saying, “Look, you guys can update this as often as needed. If you’re a group that doesn’t have as many updates, here’s how you utilize SourceDay.” And again, customize the conversation to them. We’ve seen a really good response, even with groups that have their own tool.
Tom: A lot of organizations on the supply side are going to have some form of order management system. In most cases, they’re still taking your PO, PDF, Excel sheet, and they’re manually keying that data into their order management tool. Unless you have EDI with that supplier, manual processes still exist. One of the components that we’ve found most useful for suppliers in those scenarios is that they might have a more sophisticated order management system. They can actually take an export from SourceDay’s purchase order open report, and they can push that data into their order management system. Then any exceptions, acknowledgements, updates that come out of their system can get pushed back into SourceDay. We have a pre-populated data mapping UI in the platform, the supplier side that enables them to do that.
But that’s all in the weeds. I think one of the most important pieces that really drives a unique experience is it’s not in actually processing the orders that are perfect and happy and working, it’s the workflows that SourceDay accomplishes that kind of bubble up to the surface the exception messages, when there’s a move in or a move-out or a cancellation from the buy-side that the supplier may not normally get to in real-time, or they maybe missed the email that your ERP sent, or maybe the ERP didn’t send an email and they pushed out an order that was cancelled and should’ve been cancelled. Now you’ve got to do a return or accept inventory that you don’t need. Our platform enables real-time collaboration and visibility to those exception messages that an order management system needs to know. If you don’t have visibility to those alerts and messages, you’re going to be flying blind and potentially impacting your margins.
Clint: I’ll just pile on one little thing there. It took me back to my days of when we would have a supplier that would say, “Hey, use our order taking system.” But, you know, what’s interesting is you place that initial order, and then you send another 100 emails behind it to try to figure out the status. And so that doesn’t scale for you and it doesn’t scale for the supplier. Getting them into a solution like this, where you can have all that communication in one spot gives the ultimate visibility, but also gives the ultimate performance, is what we’re trying to drive here.
Tom: That’s a great question.
Sheyna: Yeah. Fantastic. So we actually had two folks ask very similar questions. So does SourceDay have multi-lingual onboarding and technical support for international suppliers in, you know, specifically Asia, support for training?
Christine: Yes, we played with this quite a bit. We have quite a few suppliers in Asia. Again, similar to other onboarding experiences, it’s really going to be based in what makes the most sense for your group. What we found was there was a really strong reaction to having our training manuals in a supplier’s native language. For them, that was a big piece that we pushed for and have to support our group. When we find there’s ones that need more assistance, we have options that include translators. But again, what we have found is really, we want to meet them where they’re at, and the best response we had was to the guides, because again, then they have that next to them all the time, they’re able to use it and rely upon it. So that was a big push for us. And we have it for all of our major languages where we’ve got suppliers based.
Tom: Christine owns and manages a lot of this from the team. But in addition to that, a bulk of our user base are in other countries, non-English speaking countries that we support and are very successful in the platform. We’ve got a proven track record of over six years of being able to support those suppliers all around the world.
Clint: Tom and I hang out too much because I was going to say the exact same thing almost verbatim.
Christine: And I was going to list off all that. And I was like, oh, I’ll miss something. And I’ll be mad later.
Sheyna: Awesome. Thanks, guys. All right, so we’ve got about nine minutes left, so maybe one or two more questions depending on the answers. Can you guys talk a little bit about what kind of data and insights are SourceDay supplier scorecards and dashboards track for folks?
Tom: Get it, Christine.
Christine: Awesome. The really cool thing about the SourceDay scorecard is the customization. There are pieces around on-time delivery, responsiveness, price variance, quality. So that is in the core scorecard. And again, there is a lot of room for you to tell us, this is how we actually grade our suppliers. And this is what is important to us as a customer, and then come out with a cumulative grade.
I will also add, there are so many reports and tools that are in our system that I think are even shaping the conversation more. Especially with COVID and it being brought up in the boardroom and supply chain being talked about on today’s show, the questions are really growing. Even outside that scorecard, there’s just so much data and so many conversations we’re having with customers that I think is really impactful. And they’re then able to take and talk to their team and show the impact of their team and SourceDay. So, while I’ll say it’s very built out, it’s evergreen and always changing.
Sheyna: Awesome. Thanks, Christine. Let’s see, does SourceDay support on-premise and cloud ERPs or just one or the other?
Clint: I think I touched on a little bit earlier. So many ERPs that are in the market today have been around a long time and a lot of folks have had their particular version installed for years. And those are typically on-premise, and so that’s something we support. We have many, many, many customers that are on-premise and nowadays we’re starting to see a move to cloud, you know, just like with everything else. People who are adopting a brand new ERP, for example, a lot of those organizations are going to some kind of cloud version of an ERP. And we do support that as well.
Tom: I’ll just pile on that just a little bit. I think Clint and Christine nailed it, but in addition to that, in some ways we give some of these organic growth organizations the ability to give their integration of those acquired companies longer life without having to take on the ERP projects to migrate them to a standard ERP. And they can delay those for years and focus more on the business and integrating other aspects of the business that are more critical than just the IT components. Where we’re able to actually integrate some of, even unsupported versions of ERPs and continue to give them more life in the cloud and still have a consolidated view of that data across all of their systems has been very critical for our customer success.
Sheyna: Awesome. Thanks, guys. Let’s see here. I think we’ve got time for one more question. So let’s go with… oh, as I was about to say that somebody else sent in another question, so maybe we’ll have to fit in two. Supplier bases are always dynamic and might want to include new suppliers under this program. What would be the timeline for onboarding a new supplier in terms of weeks, Christine?
Clint: You’re just going to say days, right Christine?
Christine: Yeah. I was going to say I’ll get nitty-gritty, our initial campaign runs three weeks. There are a bunch of steps that I won’t bore you guys with that. But we vary up the medium. We vary up the content. At that point, if the supplier needs some more assistance, we would connect back with our team. And usually, at that point, we’re like, give us another contact, give us another way in to go have conversation.
Typically, if we get to that point, what we find is, “Oh, my contact isn’t there anymore.” So, it’s helping you clean up your ERP data as well. And that’s another thing too, is we know the supplier base is changing all the time. So sometimes our outreach can help bring things to light that might say, “Oh, that’s why that supplier wasn’t responsive.” You know, she went out on leave and now we have another contact. So, we get to that point, we’re always looking for new opportunities and new ways. It’s never really a hands-up type of situation.
Clint: We also arm your procurement teams with some information that you can repurpose and send out to your suppliers. So, they’re already aware that SourceDay is…that you’re doing business in SourceDay and that they can expect to hear from SourceDay soon. And that generally helps with the onboarding process as well, because now the supplier is ready, aware, and ready to go when we do reach out to them.
Tom: I feel like I’m being left out. So I’m going to go ahead and speak too. Just kidding. But this is such a critical topic to cover, right? And again, like we spoke about earlier, this comes up on every call at some point in every sales cycle. And to your question, we continually support you and your suppliers through the lifecycle as you as a customer to continually make it successful. As you adopt and turn up new suppliers or suppliers turnover, we do see those lists because we’re integrated to your system. We’re seeing new suppliers come into our platform. And when you tell us either through the platform or, you know, through a communication with Christine’s team, that you want to turn on new suppliers and you give us that list. There’s multiple methods you can do that, but then we immediately start our automation and our progress. We immediately kick off the workflows and start to train and onboard those suppliers in real-time. It can take some time, same day or days, depending on the supplier’s willingness. It could take us a couple of weeks. But as you continue to bring those new lists or hit the triggers in the platform that ask you to turn suppliers on, you know, we begin that process and get almost immediate results.
Clint: Hey, Sheyna, I want to ask Tom one question. This is kind of a loaded question, but I just want to make sure we get it out there. Can you speak quickly on supplier performance? What are we doing in the platform that helps with tracking late deliveries and PO acknowledgements? We really haven’t touched upon that granular feature or functionality, but I think it’s important to point out that it’s not just about showing a PO to your supplier.
Tom: That’s a great loaded question. I’ll answer and start in part with a customer story, that the day we turned on our largest customer many years ago at the time was our largest customer, they had a supplier get onboarded that same day. It was one of their largest global suppliers based in Asia, and they had many dozens of purchase orders with hundreds of lines open at that moment. And that day they noticed, I don’t remember the exact number. There were four to six POs that they didn’t even know existed. You know, at that moment, the supplier had already missed those lead times and already missed those deliveries to that customer. And our platform brought that visibility to them almost immediately, and immediately started giving that value to the customer. So definitely a loaded question.
I’m sure Clint wants to pile on himself, but you know, the ability of our platform and workflows to drive visibility and drive actionable data is what it’s about, right. Today, all of these organizations talking about analytics and insights and AI and machine learning, that is all great. We can do all of that, but the most important piece of data is how do you take action from it? How do you get value from it? How can you extract some benefit for your organization or for your customers from that data? Which is what SourceDay is all about. We’re taking that valuable data from your ERP, we’re making it collaborative with your trading partners outside your four walls. We’re doing analytics around it, we’re doing some predictability around it, but more importantly, we’re making it actionable so that you can be a better business, more profitable and drive more value to your customers. It’s a great loaded question.
Clint: Yeah. Yeah. And I do want to add on to that. If your company cuts 100 purchase orders this week, do you know which of those purchase orders, the 52% of those purchase orders are going to give you problems? You probably don’t know. And that’s what we built into SourceDay is the ability for you as a procurement and supply chain team to manage by exception. And so, all of the data, all of the actions, everything built into SourceDay is really about bubbling up to you, something that needs your attention or you’re going to have a problem on your hands. And that’s not something most companies have today because they treat every PO, every purchase order line, every part they buy the same. SourceDay is helping you prioritize your problems so you can take action on those.
I think we have one more question that just popped in. Oh, it looks like it’s a pricing question. I can just jump in on that. The question is, how is your software priced? Is it based off suppliers? This is interesting. We actually base the PO solution off the number of buyers you have. The suppliers, we do not price on that. This is free for suppliers to use it. So, whether you have 100 suppliers or you have 1,000 suppliers using SourceDay, there’s no difference in costs. Our cost changes based off the number of buyers that you have.
Sheyna: Thanks, Clint. We are at the top of the hour here, so that was a great round of questions. I really appreciate everyone’s participation. And I want thank our esteemed panelists today, Clint, Tom, and Christine for hanging out with us and talking about supplier portals. This is really great guys, thank you.
Tom: Thank you. It’s always fun.
Clint: Thank you. It was. It was fun.
Sheyna: For everybody on the webinar, you will get a recording of this within the next couple of days. Thank you for joining us and for being here. Have a great rest of your day.
Tom: Thank you everyone.
Christine: Thanks, everyone.