Procurement Supply Chain Innovation 2020
29 April 2020
Boardrooms overlook substantial cash savings
Bell Integration can make significant savings on “tail spend”, as well as improving regulatory compliance and contractual standards
How many times at home do you put off doing household chores or paying bills until the last possible moment?
It is the same for high-volume lowvalue spend, also known as tail spend. Companies have been procrastinating when it comes to addressing these areas. But they are now realising successful management of this spend area can yield large cumulative returns and mitigate the risks that often exist in unmanaged transactions.
The challenge with tail spend is that it is difficult to control and often one-off, making it unpredictable and inefficient to manage with the existing pressure
on procurement resources.
Bell Integration has been working with businesses as an extended procurement function, offering a turnkey solution to manage the end-to-end procurement of such spend.
Account Director Neil Pratt says many companies are unable to manage or review smaller value transactions made by their employees or procurement departments.
For many, the collective size of this tail spend, so-called because of the Pareto principle in economics, is unknown because individual purchases are often made outside purchasing controls, such as off contract or non-purchase order spend.
“If customers continue not focusing on the tail, they are leaving 20 per cent of their global spend unchallenged,” Pratt warns. “In this day and age, leaving 20 per cent of spend, and risk associated, unaddressed is a major challenge for businesses.”
His comment is supported by an enormous body of research. Last year, research conducted by Boston Consulting Group found that companies managing tail spend through digital means alone can cut their annual expenditures by 5 to 10 per cent.
But Pratt believes that there are even more substantial savings to be made, noting artificial intelligence (AI) solutions alone may be unable to deliver
the largest possible reward.
“Robotics and AI-driven tools struggle with tail spend because it is a lot of one-off spends, so you don’t necessarily have the data to build up the algorithms,” he says.
Edward Long, Bell Integration’s Head of Pre-Sales and Analytics for procurement management, explains that the company instead works with clients to understand their full tail scope and the size of the potential opportunity to make savings.
He adds that this can be outside the traditional 20 per cent due to the client’s specific circumstances on what is deemed unmanaged. This is done by extracting data from different internal sources and bringing this together into one digestible format before running deep analysis using Bell’s datapoints and category expertise.
“From this, we can go back to the client and say, ‘Here is your total scope and savings opportunity’,” says Long. Clients then agree the areas of spend to be managed by Bell.
Not only does this generate savings, but Bell’s unique model of contracting directly with the supplier rapidly reduces complexity as all suppliers, and associated supplier management activities and costs, are now handled by Bell from day one.
“This allows the client to focus on strategic initiatives that deliver maximum value to stakeholders, while Bell drive efficiencies and compliance in the lower value spend areas,” Long explains.
In addition to the financial savings, there are other advantages to harnessing the skills of Bell Integration’s’ procurement services. Doing so can improve levels of regulatory compliance and ensure managed suppliers sign up to correct contractual standards as agreed with the customer.
Long notes that while companies often have strict contractual procedures in place for larger spends, there is often nothing for smaller items, even though such transactions collectively total a sizeable sum.
Not having a structured agreement in place for this spend can expose companies to several risks beyond the financial ones.
“These risks can be reputational, operational, financial or regulatory and are often unrelated to contract size,” he says.
“We run the due diligence on the suppliers and also negotiate savings and contractual terms, which means clients get greater visibility of the ever-changing risk profile as well as the total cost of their tail.”
Strategic insight into tactical spend, find out how Bell Integration can help you reduce tail spend and simplify the IT procurement process using our Procurement Management Services
Bell Integration is awarded Gold Datacentre standard by Microsoft
We are very pleased to be awarded Gold standard for Datacentres by Microsoft.
Data Centre Migration and Data Centre Optimisation are two of Bell’s service offerings under our Transform capability, which focuses on putting technology at the centre of our customers’ businesses.
Guided by vClarus, our specialist data centre migration services relocate critical apps, services and data to their new environment, providing a systematic approach to establish key migration milestones – including the What (expected outcomes), the Where (your target environment), the How (migration strategy and methods) and the When (the schedule).
Our objective is to work with businesses from application discovery to workload migration and give customers a fixed cost, fixed outcome programme that delivers on an organisation’s data centre optimisation vision.
Please note that our strategic engagements allow us to remain vendor-agnostic and offer our customers the right solution to fit their business requirements. Find out more here.
Hamilton Rentals Enabled Businesses to Keep the Lights On - by supplying thousands of Laptops in March
[WOKINGHAM] 1 April 2020
Five weeks ago, with impending danger attached to a virus emanating from the East, Hamilton Rentals anticipated a new change in circumstance was going to affect how people worked. If our hunch was correct, this change was quite likely to disrupt business in offices. We prepared for an upsurge in demand for laptops, which would enable employees to work from home and operate a business as usual policy – as our business has.
“I am proud to say that we have been able to rapidly deploy over 3,500 laptops to customers during March, enabling their businesses to operate as usual. What I have learned from this experience, which has created such disruption to our normal daily activities, is the importance of IT rental in a business’s crises strategy”. – Steve Shelsher
With the situation changing rapidly each day, we will continue to support our community by supplying AV and IT equipment to businesses for short-term rental. Our warehouses in Wokingham and Portsmouth are fully operational, while employees working from home remain contactable virtually, with video calls a substitute for face-to-face discussions and meetings, while we get through this current period. Hardware hire is structured around the requirement, allowing for the equipment’s return, renewal or refresh at any point, with no financial penalty.
In response to demand, additional stock will continue to be processed. Contact us with any queries and we will do all we can to help.
Logistics: Hamilton’s internal fleet of vehicles delivered compute equipment to business locations throughout the UK, as well as facilitating distribution to homeworkers. Our engineers, as per usual, managed the IT hardware installations and continue to offer on and off-site support to businesses via telephone, or onsite where possible.
Sanitisation of product: Rental products have always been cleaned before and after each hire as a matter of course. We have introduced additional sanitisation using the cleaning agent and virus sanitiser, Isopropanol liquid, which is used in many laboratories and hospitals to clean surfaces and disinfect products.
Please be assured that we are taking precautionary measures to minimise and contain any risk of contagion with the health of our employees and are following guidance and advice from Government.
Hamilton Rentals is in business since 1972 and started with the provision of short-term rental of electronic office, computer and audio visual, and test and measurement equipment. In 2017, the company was acquired by Bell Integration, a global IT Services Consulting business. Bell is at the forefront of helping companies drive down operating costs and improve their ability to engage with their own customers, either by supporting the growth of their channels to market, or by aiding their responsiveness and service quality. Combining forces enabled Hamilton’s to extend its customer base and range of services to more than IT and AV rental solutions.
In addition to computer rental, Hamilton’s provides Channel Rental and Vendor Hardware Evaluation programmes, Event Management, Ex-Rental Sales, Installation and Support solutions to the construction industry, events and exhibitions’ sectors, film & television, financial, government, IT systems’ integrators and Technology. Being part of Bell Integration, the company is also able to offer a range of IT solutions, which you can read about here https://www.hamilton.co.uk/additional-services/
Hamilton Rental’s Steve Shelsher is at Cloud Expo and explains why companies rent AV and IT equipment In discussion with Daniel Feasey and Jim Marsden
Companies rely on Hamilton Rentals to help manage the peaks & troughs of their businesses with short-term IT and AV workload requirements, that don’t justify ownership. Almost 50 years in business, Hamilton’s has provided solutions to the construction industry, events and exhibitions’ sectors, film & television, financial, government, IT systems’ integrators and Technology.
Equinix’s Matt George talks about how Bell’s specialist data centre services benefit the end user
This partnership works really well, said Matt George, because Equinix is in the datacentre interconnection business, and Bell is in the datacentre migration business and this allows a joint conversation with the end user.
Identity Access Management Solutions
In this first of a series of blogs, we explore the fast-evolving field of IAM and discover why it’s becoming such a vital aspect of enterprise IT.
In a nutshell, identity access management (IAM) is an important security and business discipline that ensures the right individuals access the right resources, at the right times, and for the right reasons.
While it might not sound very exciting, IAM is becoming an increasingly important aspect of enterprise IT that makes it possible to:
- Manage digital identities
- Control and manage the resources, applications and information these identities can access
- Make it easy for users to access the data and apps they need, and
- Undertake regulatory monitoring and reporting to ensure compliance.
Now while that might all sound pretty straightforward, the growth of cloud computing and an increasingly distributed and mobile workforce means that IAM is becoming ever more complex
What’s the problem?
In today’s fast-paced world, IT staff are under pressure to provision information resources quickly and seamlessly to users, no matter where they are. But this expectation for on-demand access creates a very real security issue – one that keeps IT managers up at night.
Let’s explore why. Firstly, IT managers need to be certain that access to applications is tightly controlled so they can minimise attacks on critical applications and ensure enterprise data stays secure.
It’s a task that’s further complicated when various departments – including information security, application development and regulatory compliance – often customise access privileges to best suit their individual business needs.
All of which can result in a complex patchwork of access provisioning and de-provisioning, lost workforce productivity and the potential risk of security breaches.
Other complicating factors
The business IT environment is constantly evolving. With more devices and services to be managed than ever before, the prevalence of cloud computing, mobile apps and BYOD are adding to the IT department’s headache. But that’s not the only challenge.
As employees migrate through different roles in an organisation, it becomes increasingly difficult to manage identity and access. Privileges granted when an employee’s duties change are often not revoked when no longer required. This leads to an accumulation of privileges known as privilege creep – and privilege creep creates a security risk.
Employees may end up accessing applications and data in an unauthorised or potentially unsafe manner. And if a cybercriminal gains access to the account of a user with excessive privileges, they will be able to do more harm.
Finally, poor identity management can lead to individuals retaining privileges well after they are no longer employees.
Get IAM right
The good news is that implementing a comprehensive IAM strategy, featuring an appropriate and robust technology solution – can generate measurable business value.
Everything from increased security and operational efficiency to simplified regulatory compliance, and enhanced employee satisfaction.
In our next blog, we’ll take a look at what a good IAM system should include.
If you’d like to find out more about how to implement a holistic yet effective enterprise data security platform for your company, get in touch with one of our experts today.