Count the Ways
Count the Ways Theres no shortage of options for e-procurement buyers looking to outsource catalog management. Service vendors, including Requisite, TPN Register and ICG, typically work on a contract basis, and their charges vary depending on the number of supplier catalogs buyers want to work with.Not every enterprise moving to e-procurement will need to tap into such content management products and services, however. In some industries, happily for buyers, a critical mass of key suppliers has already gathered around one of the supplier networks of e-procurement vendors such as Ariba or Commerce One. Through these networks, suppliers already can upload catalogs and accept electronic orders, said Andrew Bartels, an analyst at Giga Information Group Inc., in Cambridge, Mass. In the railroad industry, for example, a large number of suppliers are supporting Clarus Corp.s e-procurement system, Bartels said. It may make sense for buyers in such industries simply to embrace the dominant e-procurement software platform and network.
Buyers can also choose to implement catalog management software from vendors such as Poet Software Corp., of San Mateo, Calif.; Cardonet Inc., of Santa Clara, Calif.; Liaison Technology Inc., of Austin, Texas; and Vinimaya Inc., of Tarrytown, N.Y. One software vendor, Trigo Technologies Inc., of Brisbane, Calif., focuses exclusively on software that allows suppliers to more easily publish their catalogs to the multiple formats used by e-procurement applications.