SAP Ariba response to Covid-19: supplier risk technology and Managing remote workforce (Part 2)

In our last article, we discussed ways that procurement organizations can maintain business continuity to mitigate recent disruptions to the supply chain. We also explained how procurement leaders can collaborate more efficiently with suppliers and quickly replace fallen suppliers. If you missed it, you could access our article here.

In this article, we will talk about managing supplier risk and enabling an efficient remote workforce. These are two major areas of concern for procurement leaders because without suppliers and employees, business operations will come to a grinding halt. Next, we will review these two areas in more detail.

Supply Risk Management

An organization’s supplier base can present several areas of risk and with the COVID-19 crisis, there are more risks to business continuity than ever before. One way that procurement leaders can manage supply chain disruption is by monitoring the entire supplier base in real-time. The key areas to monitor can be summarized in the following four risk categories.

While you could monitor a few of these categories for your main suppliers on your own, having a cloud technology enables you to monitor all suppliers across all risk categories. SAP Ariba – Supplier Risk is a stand-alone, cloud-based solution for monitoring risk across these categories and includes hundreds of risk activity types. Although this a popular tool in the market, it is not the only tool available. A good risk monitoring should aspire to have the following functionalities.  

  • Automatically assign a risk rating to suppliers
  • Send email notification as soon as a risk activity is detected
  • Interactive dashboard for real-time risk monitoring
  • Configurable risk severity levels (customize for your company’s risk tolerance)

In addition, the tool should be cloud-based so that your workforce can access it from home or mobile on-the-go as incidents can occur after hours as well.

Remote Workforce Management

Flexible ways of working and a focus on work-life balance have been trending long before the COVID-19 crisis. Now, with new social distancing measures in place, there has been a greater cultural shift towards working from home, prompting many companies to consider a sustained remote workforce model.

One way to optimize remote workforce efficiency is to leverage cloud-based technologies for your operations. A leading cloud platform in the market today is offered by SAP and encompasses all of the systems that a company would need to run its operations remotely, including SAP Ariba for sourcing and procurement activities.

A small investment into cloud-based technologies is essential and will become increasingly important as the remote workforce models continue to evolve. With the correct tools and proper training, a remote workforce can decrease operating costs and improve productivity.

The key technology enablers to drive a remote workforce should include the following capabilities:

  • Cloud-based platform for supplier collaboration anywhere
  • Web and mobile app for buying goods and approving purchases
  • Integrated systems to enable easy flow of data
  • Enhanced reporting capabilities to access real-time data


There are two main challenges with a remote workforce. One, teams must have access to all the tools needed to complete their daily job functions. And two, the ability to manage the remote workforce’s output efficiently without slowing down the process. A cloud-based technology landscape can solve these and many other challenges. To hear more about how Tenthpin can help optimize your source-to-pay processes, please email

Contact our industry experts at Tenthpin Management Consultants if you would like to learn more.

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About the Author

Marco Estevam

Advisor – USA

Marco is our SAP Ariba expert with over 10 years of source-to-pay consulting experience