Brilliant post I picked up from Gaping Void. It discusses a company called Thingamy and how Thingamy’s founder contrasts ERP (which in his book equates to “Easily Repeatable Process”) with what Thingamy call BRP (“Barely Repeatable Process”).
When I think back to my old SAP and Ariba days: those are really all about Easily Repeatable Processes. Posting an invoice, posting a purchase order, issuing a sales order. Etc etc. All pretty standard stuff that happens the same way day in and day out.
But when it comes to sourcing, things are rarely as clear cut as posting a purchase order. Sourcing is much more BRP than ERP which is probably why so many of the traditional ERP companies struggle to produce quality e-sourcing software. And why so many companies who have bought e-auction and e-sourcing licenses end up under-using them and/or considering them a poor tool (e.g. see the comments about e-auctions on Supply Excellence and SpendMatter’s third wish for Santa for some examples). And probably why Email and Excel are still de rigeur in most purchasing departments.
Unless Santa does come up with the MacGyver gadget, a new approach will be needed that better addresses the BRP nature of sourcing. And despite the underwhelming response so far to Enterprise 2.0, I’m sure that most, if not all, of the principles that Jeff Nolan lists here are going to play a major part.