How Spend Analytics Can Improve Your Procurement

The crucial role of digital transformation in procurement, enhancing efficiency and unlocking savings through strategic data utilisation.

Most companies know how much they make each year, but how many know what they’re spending? It’s a pretty big question, but it’s one relatively few can answer without intelligent spend analytics. It’s a big question, because close to 20% of what a company spends annually goes on indirect goods – the things that keep the company running – and it all adds up.

The average company spends £900 to £1200 a year per employee on office supplies, which in a company of 30 adds up to a yearly salary – and that’s just one spend category. When you factor in things like computers, software licenses, printing and cleaning products, it’s not hard to see how spending gets out of control – and what a huge opportunity there is to make savings.

Fortunately, those opportunities are made far easier to spot by spend analytics platforms. While they’re not particularly new in a technological sense, they are increasingly sophisticated – and more to the point they’re saving companies a small fortune. I-Tel Group, for example, typically saves clients 15% in the first month and a further 10% in the following months. Sound too good to be true? Well, it’s not – and it’s all made possible by some pretty smart tech. So how does it work?

Spend analytics software is a little like YouTube in a certain sense. When you watch videos or listen to music on YouTube, it will analyse what you’ve watched, gather the information, correlate it with other user data and make recommendations for similar videos that you might like.

In the same way, spend analytics software gathers information about what you’re buying, what others are buying, how the market is behaving and what other suppliers there are. It then shows you that information in a way that you can easily understand, and it gives you recommendations about how you could make smarter buying decisions – and you don’t have to do any of the legwork.

We empower clients with real-time visibility of spend through a series of bespoke reporting and dashboard features.

Why old software won’t cut it

The excel spreadsheet has a special place in procurement folklore. It’s ubiquitous with line items, rulers and hours spent poring over manually inserted data. They, along with other programmes and software, were game changers but now are very limited in their scope. They were made for a time when what companies bought and how companies bought was not a strategic decision.

Of course, these days data is being used in very different ways by organisations, which has made life even harder for the humble spreadsheet to remain an integral part of the operation. While it’s a whizz at storing, arranging and organising information, it’s limited in its ability to analyse, correlate and make sense of it. It’s like a librarian that arranges books neatly but can’t help you find the right the bookshelf for the information you need.

To extend the analogy, spend analytics make users the librarian. It makes finding the correct information simple and it makes analysing it straightforward. From that point you are able to make a host of better decisions around how and what you buy – decisions that ultimately benefit the organisation. It also makes peoples lives easier.

What can spend analytics do for me?

In procurement organisations, or in companies that employ procurement departments, the use of spend analytics is common and widespread. It’s been incumbent in those types of environments for around a decade and to that end is pretty well road tested.  What that means for companies that don’t employ procurement teams, is that spend analytics are a very safe bet; they’ve also come on enough to be pretty user friendly.

All that is worth pointing out because what they do behind the scenes is fairly technical. It’ll take the data from all your databases, organise it, clean and  present it in a way that is easy to digest. You get a comprehensive view of the company and you get to see where you’re spending money and where there’s potential to make savings. But that’s not all.

Comparing your data to that of the market gives you a 360 view of the context you’re operating in. It gives you leverage to negotiate with suppliers who are giving a competitor a better price; it helps you to mitigate risk if notice bottlenecks in supply from key vendors – it can also help you to predict future price with relative accuracy and to plan your budget accordingly.

In short, spend analytics will help your company to perform better. You’ll make better decisions, you’ll save money and you’ll stay competitive – and you’ll do so with relative simplicity. As such, these aren’t a nice to have anymore – they’re essential.

Yeo Valley Case Study

Find out how we helped England’s favourite organic brand reduce their print consumable spend by 40%.
Spend analytics - intelligent reporting with our eProcurement system


Real-time, customised procurement intelligence with our eProcurement solutions and Power BI dashboards.

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Interested in a free audit of your indirect goods spending? Get in touch today.
Gareth Shaw, I-Tel Group

Gareth Shaw

Senior Procurement Consultant

Gareth has over 19 years’ experience in commercial procurement contract management across both public and private sector. Holding senior positions at the Ministry of Justice and Turner and Townsend Gareth has overseen several multi million-pound contracts.
Guiding I-Tel in best practice and sustainability while offering practical solutions to steer our procurement team towards red tape reduction and compliant, efficient services.

Gareth Thompson

Legal & Compliance

Gareth is a qualified, senior commercial solicitor with 30 years’ experience. As counsel to the directors Gareth brings a wealth of experience to enhance I-Tel’s legal compliance and ensure supply chain legitimacy.
Overseeing all our commercial agreements and supporting the individual requirements of our clients, Gareth brings tremendous credibility to the whole organisation.
Dee Sarikaya, Head of Marketing, I-Tel Group

Dee Sarikaya

Head of Marketing

An impressive background with blue chip companies Dee is a former global B2B Commercial manager for Dyson. A proven track record in marketing and communications Dee is responsible for I-Tel’s client onboarding and messaging.
With huge experience in strategic international campaigns and working effectively in cross-functional teams Dee brings strong commercial acumen alongside an excellent ability to interact and influence at all levels.
Paul Keenan, Head of Client Services, I-Tel Group

Paul Keenan

Head of Client Services

Paul has over 30 years’ experience in B2B sales in both the public and private sector and heads up our client services division. Overseeing high value public and private sector contracts Paul has in depth knowledge of the industry.
Key contact to senior management and C suite clients with a problem solving, customer service excellence ideology.
Andrew Plummer, Operations Director, I-Tel Group

Andrew Plummer

Operation Director

A co-founder from the outset Andy has headed the operations team for I-Tel group. An engineer by trade Andy has a vast experience in manufacturing, logistics and warehousing.
Overseeing the day to day complexities of our hybrid model and ensuring all the individual parts function to produce the seamless highly efficient business model we see today.
Melvin Gauci, MD, I-Tel Group

Melvin Gauci

Managing Director

Managing Director and founding partner at I-Tel Group. Mel has been instrumental in transforming the business from a start-up cartridge manufacturing facility to an innovative forward thinking procurement company.
With 15 years at the helm and in depth knowledge of I.T. infrastructure and data analysis I-Tel Group is today one of the latest key players in the indirect procurement space.

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