This year we're expecting a lot of Hype around tail spend management

February 3, 2021

Last year we were excited when Gartner included Fairmarkit’s intelligent sourcing platform as a sample vendor in the Hype Cycle Procurement and Sourcing Solutions, 2020. We believe companies and technologies on this list are changing the status quo for the better. And this year, we think that disruption will continue.

In the Hype Cycle report, Gartner identified tail spend procurement solutions can unlock additional savings for the procurement organization. 

“Actively managing tail spend increases spend visibility and coverage, operational efficiency and improves purchasing controls.” 

We believe inclusion in the Cycle means Gartner—and the market—understand the value proposition of these emerging technologies and vendors. CTOs, CIOs, and CISOs use the Hype Cycle when looking for innovative solutions to streamline and automate processes and make sourcing and procurement more efficient.

Tail spend management has the potential to completely shake up how procurement operates. It’s an area where low dollar, high volume, and extremely manual process all converge—three qualities that make it ripe for evolution. Most organizations devote hours and hours to processing tail spend purchases, yet they mostly just re-up with their incumbent supplier. The whole ordeal involves a lot of manual touch. That’s hours and hours of non-strategic work which is unlikely to yield any savings and has scant opportunity for vendor consolidation.

Yet technology like Fairmarkit automates the ingestion, creation, and execution of RFQs for tail spend categories—reducing the manual labor and freeing up the team for more strategic tasks. It can also automatically handle contract expirations and initiate RFQs to reduce the need for a human to review and process orders.

Our AI-powered sourcing platform uses your vendor master list and our own vendor base to suggest and recommend suppliers to participate in RFQs—increasing the chances of higher vendor participation rates. That can mean improved bidding activity, reduced costs, increased savings, and the potential for vendor consolidation. All in all, it reduces the time procurement needs to spend on tail spend management activities.

Once you’ve finished the RFQ process, our platform collects and analyzes the bids to determine your savings. Next, it updates the purchase requisition—including the awarded supplier and pricing—in your internal system before issuing a purchase order.

The net effect is fewer hours spent on tail spend, freeing you up to work on more strategic items and find savings where they otherwise might not have been. The smart, touchless processing of PRs—all the way through to PO issuance and order placement—further reduces the time and costs of processing tail spend.

And let’s not forget that getting tail spend under control means putting more overall spend under management and tied to a PO.

So, it’s worth the hype! Now is the time to address your tail spend and reap ROIs of 4-times, 5-times—and maybe even higher—in terms of value received back.

Gartner, Hype Cycle Procurement and Sourcing Solutions, 2020, Micky Keck, 31 July 2020. 

Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.

Expert procurement and supply-chain tips sent straight to your inbox.