Stop Clowning Around With Vendor Master Management
Synchronized Vendor Master Management across your enterprise may seem like a true mission impossible. However, there are some tips that you can follow to easily turn your current process into a controlled and efficient best practice. If you already have established, agreed upon, internal vendor master management policies and conduct regular audits, then you are already there. If not, then with a bit of work you can improve your chances of avoiding the problems associated with dirty vendor data. With the right tools and processes in place, you’ll able to reduce things like duplicate payments, fraudulent activities, and needless compliance risks. Here are some of the top, proven practices, which can help you conduct a successful vendor master management process re-structure project:
Identify and Eliminate Duplicate Vendor Records
Here’s a question worth remembering. Can you believe that more than 30% of all duplicate payments are associated with the duplicate vendor data and coding issues? These duplicate vendor entries inevitably lead to double payment troubles, which cost your company in both time and money. It’s much better and obviously much cheaper to prevent these double payment troubles than it is to try to fix them once they occur. Right? A well-crafted vendor master management policy can eliminate duplicate payments.
Understand What Related Suppliers are
This useful tip comes with a simple explanation. There can be multiple payments listed and associated with one vendor or multiple vendor numbers for each of your shipping location. That’s why it’s necessary for you to familiarize yourself with structural, parent, and subsidiary relationships between all vendors.
Archive Inactive Vendors
If some of your vendors haven’t been active for some time, it is recommended to remove them from your vendor master file. However, it is also recommended to archive these vendors as well. When these certain vendors are archived, all information associated with them can be easily accessed and processed. On the other side, by removing all inactive vendors, your master vendor files and lists become leaner, and your company records are much easier to access and utilize. As a result, you will increase your employee’s time efficiency through a significant reduction in processing time.
Identify and Find any Missing Data
It is of crucial importance to make sure all vendor data and records are up-to-date, complete, and accurate. Take the time to define what a “Complete” vendor record looks like at your firm and do the analytics to determine what types of data are most in need. Although the initial results may look painful, creating a vendor information standard within your vendor master management controls will help you begin the healing process right away.
Involve All Vested Department Representatives
You shouldn’t limit the participation of the vendor master management restructuring to just one department. When you include other departments, you will gain invaluable insight into what kind of ways vendor data will be used across the enterprise. Structured properly, with an active data syndication plan your master vendor dat will empower your entire organization, rather than only one division. We frequently see collaboration across multiple departments including Finance, Procurement, Purchasing, Legal, Risk, and anyone that can request a new supplier.
Automation is the Key
The best way to conduct vendor master management activities is to ensure their full automation. Planned correctly, implementing a new supplier data policy should be a process that is highly automatable. New Multi-parametric Vendor Portals can make light work of the strictest controls and data validation schemes. Additionally, parametric workflows will enable you to replicate virtually any process that exists or any process that you desire.
My favorite part. Consider implementing a vendor self-service portal where individual users external and internal, can update all relevant information and get immediate answers to all salient questions. make sure you insist on a Vendor Portal that offers:
- Real-time reporting
- Ad-Hoc analytics
- Dynamic workflows
- Third party integrations for real-time data validation
- Single Sign-On capabilities for enhanced security
- Multi-Location configurations
- Flexible Communication integrations
- Full Data Security Credentials