October 19, 2020

Deploying Workday: Optimizing Procurement

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CrossCountry’s Challenges

Many organizations are focused on top-line revenue growth and don’t put as much emphasis on optimizing direct or indirect spend. However, numerous companies hit a tipping point when their unstructured procurement process impacts overall company performance and the bottom line.

For indirect spend, businesses have found that their employees can expense items or independently enter into supplier contracts with little approvals or controls. If there is an approval process, it is typically performed verbally or through manager email approval. Accounting is often not aware of the arrangement until it is time to pay an invoice, and in many cases isn’t even in possession of a copy of the final contract.

Similarly, CrossCountry’s current spending policies and systems need more structure. Vendor requested purchase orders are created in Microsoft Word, and Dropbox and Excel are used to track supplier contract information (such as end dates). Because all of these pieces are disconnected (e.g., requisition, approval, purchase, invoicing and payment), a considerable amount of time is spent putting them together in order to reconcile what was approved and when, and when to pay the supplier.

How Workday Can Help

With Workday, CrossCountry will have one central place to view our supplier transactional history without running reports and downloading to Excel for further analysis.

Workday will enable the negotiation of favorable pricing on commonly procured items with vendors such as Amazon because there will be a clear line of sight into spend by each one. Through the use of Workday’s PunchOut Catalogs, the team can create requisitions from the supplier’s catalog; if the item has been pre-negotiated, it will be added automatically.

These requisitions will route to management approval based on attributes of the request (such as region or type of item being requested) and an approval hierarchy that requires senior-level authorization based on amount.

Next, if the request is with one of the pre-approved suppliers, it will be auto-sourced into a purchase order and automatically issued to the supplier, fulfilled, and shipped to the office or the employee’s home, and received in Workday. With their supplier contract functionality, the team can track spend and consumption against pre-defined spend limits established on the supplier contracts. This will help to track current spend against plan and ensure that the supplier’s invoice is correct.

If it is a new supplier, they will register in the Supplier Portal and include all pertinent information and forms associated with doing business with them. As invoices arrive, they can be automatically matched to the purchase order or receipt transaction and routed for approval or payment. Accounting will now have complete visibility into all types of committed spending and be able to streamline the invoice approval process; the team will also be able to have rich analytics on things such as who/ what/ where there is spending in order to negotiate further pricing, analyze budget to actual spend, and identify non-purchase order spend offenders early in order to get them to follow the company’s standard process.


To learn more, view our guidebook, “Learning from Our Journey: 3 Ways that CFOs Can Benefit from Workday”

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