Best Practices Workflow
With traditional purchasing management methods, a great deal of emphasis is placed on the
tail end of the process with the auditing of invoices either by a purchasing agent, a manager, or by accounts payable. This can
be a timely and inefficient method offering very little in return. When an error is caught, the savings is minimal due
to the amount of time already spent by each individual involved in the transaction. In order to combat these
inefficiencies, Cinema Solutions has a built-in workflow designed to manage the procurement
process throughout its lifecycle, with heavy emphasis placed on the front end where incorrect
products and pricing can be eliminated.
The Workflow is defined by the five stages of the procurement lifecycle - Content Management, Ordering,
Shipping, Receiving, and Invoicing. The workflow allows buyers and suppliers to co-manage the process by
interacting through each stage in the process. Some steps require manual intervention with the system while
other steps can be fully automated.
Read on for more detail about the various stages of the Cinema Solutions Workflow.
Content Management Stage
The Content Management stage is the initial stage of the Workflow. During this stage, buyers and suppliers
add information to the system and configure their accounts appropriately. For the buyer, the main steps in this
stage involve adding users and locations, approving products, and configuring the ordering templates
and workflow. For suppliers, users and locations (warehouses) are added as well, along with their full or
partial list of products. Also during this stage, buyers and suppliers will interact in order to mutually add
pricing contracts and configure settings for any automated steps.
During the Ordering stage, purchasing agents use multiple methods of purchasing to create purchase orders.
These methods include a Shopping Cart, Requisition Form, Ordering Templates (called Order Guides), and spreadsheet
uploads. The choice of method normally depends on the category of purchasing. For example, Order Guides are
typically used for replenishment ordering such as with Food and Beverage and Janitorials while the Shopping Cart is used
for specialty items.
Suppliers are sent orders electronically using a variety of methods (Ftp, Http, AS2, Fax, and Email)
and formats (EDI X12, XML, Flat File, and PDF) and can respond with an order acknowledgment. Read more about
System Integration capabilities in our Features & Benefits
The Shipping stage is focused on collecting information from the suppliers regarding the shipping status of an
order. This allows the purchasing agent to be notified of any important advanced shipping details. For example,
information regarding shipping delays or product shortages can alert the buyer to make alternate
purchases, if necessary, to satisfy their inventory needs.
During the Receiving stage, final information regarding the order delivery is collected from the purchasing agent.
The received quantities are matched with the original order and shipping quantities and all parties are notified
of any exceptions. Once the exceptions are handled, the purchase order is now ready for the final stage of
the Workflow, Invoicing.
This stage can also be used to invoke integration procedures that will send data to a third-party inventory
system. This helps to streamline the process for inventoried items by eliminating the double entry of data.
It is in the electronic Invoicing stage that the true benefits of e-Procurement are realized. As discussed
earlier, all products and pricing, as well as purchasing agents, have been approved on the front-end, leaving
your organization with an electronic invoice ready for your Accounts Payable system. In order to
ensure the highest level of data integrity at this critical stage, Cinema Solutions employs a three-way
matching system to all electronic invoices sent by the supplier. If required, an Invoice Approval and Tolerance
feature is available at this stage in the process.
Contact a Sales Representative today to learn more about Cinema Solutions and the
benefits of e-Procurement.