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How does Source-to-Pay software facilitate the RFx process (RFPs & RFQs)

Business | October 17, 2022 | By Kausika Raajan Varatharaajan RFx process | Source-to-Pay | Zumen

The challenge for procurement and sourcing begins right from the RFx process – RFP and RFQ. Because, in most product manufacturing companies, there are siloed workflows resulting in teams working with disjointed sets of data, which is often out of date. And this in turn leads to a lack of actionable data that companies need for timely and strategic decision-making. Thus affecting product launch at the right time, cost, and quality. But, there is a solution in Source-to-Pay software. Here’s why. 


Get clear RFX process visibility 

Zumen helps you gain a bird’s eye view of the progress of the RFx process. Companies can program timelines for every event there is – from the beginning of the program, the RFx process, till the end, and every stage in between. As the program progresses, you can compare the actual dates against the target dates. 


Rfx Process | Source-to-Pay | Zumen


On the Zumen dashboard, buyers can also view the breakup of parts pending at each sourcing stage parts for which an RFP is raised against the planned number of parts for the program. 

And all the stakeholders get a holistic view of the parts’ status for every program. They will be able to view the: 

      1. Number of parts planned
      2. Number of parts for which buyers have been assigned
      3. Number of parts for which RFP is created 
      4. The part-maturity type of every part
      5. Number of parts in the make, buy, and make-buy category
      6. Number of parts for which cost estimates are in progress and completed.
      7. Number of parts for which quotations are received
      8. Number of parts under sourcing approval


At every stage of the process, the stakeholders can view the count and the part number. 

In this way, teams are always aware of where they stand at present, infer where delays might occur, and plan ahead to mitigate them. In effect, proactive decision-making.


Work with streamlined data 

When the buyer receives an RFP request, he/she need not worry about which project this part/BOM belongs to. Because, Zumen takes care of that by ensuring that the requestor selects the project/program when an RFP is created. This results in time saved from having to track emails and spreadsheets. 


Rfx Process | Source-to-Pay | Zumen


The buyer can also view the summary of all the RFPs assigned to him/her on a single screen. Details visible part maturity type, information whether the part is new/old/ramp-up/carry-over is mentioned, the user with whom the request is pending with, delivery location, and also the last PO details (if the part has been sourced before). 

With the last PO details, the buyer can view all the information related to a part. Information such as the cost, other terms and conditions, quality issues – if any, delivery lead times, etc., give the buyer the needed upper hand during negotiation. This makes it easy for the buyer to work for that particular part saving precious time. 

Zumen also enables a bird’s eye view to suppliers providing them an opportunity to be more proactive. Suppliers can view the summary of all pending RFQs on a single screen. Details visible will include part number, commodity, delivery target dates, quotation target date, buyer, and add supplier remarks.


Share Design Data Securely

Design documents are of utmost importance and criticality in the ‘new product development process’. The buyers have to mediate the transfer of designs between the designer and supplier. For large files, they have to liaise with IT teams for FTP server access, and then share them. The activity is time-consuming and a lot can get lost in communication. 

Zumen simplifies that into a seamless process. Since it is connected with the PLM, the 2D drawing files are automatically sent to the buyer when an RFP is created and shared with the suppliers when buyers share the RFQs. If and when there is a need for a 3D file, buyers can send them with a click of a button using the same platform itself. It’s as simple as that!


Conduct In-context supplier negotiation

Before Zumen, supplier negotiations happened with emails, spreadsheets, phone calls, and meetings. Tracking the minutes of these negotiations adds pressure. And when someone new joins the picture, whether, on the buyer or supplier side, they would need to comb through several emails and call records to gather the details. Cumbersome, indeed. 

Zumen lifts the cumbersomeness of the whole process. 

Rfx Process | Source-to-Pay | Zumen

Negotiations can happen in real time between the buyer and supplier at the RFQ stage, using the chat option provided. All the discussions related to the RFQ for that particular part can be conducted within the application without juggling between multiple communication channels. Buyers and suppliers can clarify any design doubts and instructions to be specified on that same thread, and even share files on the chat. And buyers, also get to view the digital thread for every single part, individually. 

No confusion whatsoever. All negotiations or discussions are made accessible in a click of a button.


Don’t break a sweat with design changes

In the new product development process, design revisions are common. But, what is also common is that it becomes a tedious task for buyers to map the changes to the older version. They have to create another spreadsheet for this, and also have to update their own database.

Zumen does away with the clutter.

All changes to the design, at any stage of the process, are automatically updated in Zumen. If there are any design changes before sending an RFQ or during sourcing approval, buyers and approvers are required to select the version that they would like to continue sourcing with. And they can even choose to go with an old version for the current order and the new version from subsequent orders.


Thus, Zumen‘s end-to-end Source-to-Pay platform covers the entire RFx process. Moreover, the software is capable of handling the entire direct material procurement lifecycle, irrespective of its complexity. The consolidated software helps companies manage direct material procurement from sourcing to product launch and also fulfills the needs of the indirect procurement process, enabling faster product launch. To know more, reach out to us at [email protected] or schedule a free demo.

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