Demand for IT products and services continues to grow in Finland and the rest of the world. What is Markit’s role in the IT industry?
Markit helps companies save money on their IT hardware and accessories. Markit Finland is part of Markit which is present in 39 countries. Our marketplace offers clients the ability to perform real-time tender enquiries for IT products, which means they can see the current availability of stocks and compare their prices and delivery times from hundreds of different distributors. Significantly, through our marketplace Finnish companies can see real time data on 90% of the stock in the country at any given moment.
What are most important considerations for Finnish IT buyers?
- Price is still number one of course.
- Delivery time. Delays in deliveries of essential equipment to employees can cause significant productivity losses.
- Speed and cost of set up. No hidden costs.
- Fast OCI and CXML (punchout) integrations with ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) systems e.g., to enable employee purchasing of a limited range of pre-approved products.
How have COVID-19 and the war in Ukraine affected Finnish companies IT requirements?
There have been two significant impacts. Covid-19 resulted in an explosion in demand for remote working equipment (laptops, headphones, microphones etc.). Also, disruptions in the supply chains from Asia (many IT products came into Finland by train via Russia- this is no longer the case) have caused availability issues e.g., local Finnish IT stocks for some product categories have been fluctuating leading to extended lead times. What used to be available in a few days, now could take months. This means some clients are having to consider buffer stocks, which is tricky when you need to predict demand in the current economic climate.
How is Markit helping clients solve these challenges?
Well, our business model is perfectly suited to help. Clients not only see local Finnish stocks in our marketplace but also can see real time data across Europe. So, if a product is not available in Finland, the client can quickly and easily order cross-border deliveries (to multiple home offices or business locations) with minimum fuss or cost. This is possible as we have operations in 27 EU countries and access to stocks from 325 of the world’s largest IT distributors.
Technology and reach are only part of the equation. What really makes Markit different is a genuine commitment to honesty, transparency, professionalism, and kindness with the clear goal of helping our clients succeed in saving time and money on their IT purchasing requirements.
How successful have your clients been in making savings?
We serve hundreds of multinationals. Clients such as Danfoss, Revolut, ERGO, Innofactor and SEB have kindly shared their individual success stories that you can find on our website (www.markit.eu), but overall, the fact is that in 2021 on average our clients saved 11.7% against market average prices and thousands of hours on managing, centralizing, and streamlining their IT purchasing.
“In 2021 on average, our clients saved 11.7% against market average prices and thousands of hours on managing, centralizing, and streamlining their
Can you please explain how successful IT procurement also creates value in areas of the business that sometimes get overlooked or misunderstood?
- I think the best way to answer that is to share some of the typical benefits that our clients have:
- IT benefits
- Ability to compare prices and delivery times for millions of unique IT products, not just the top 10-30 % (which tends to be the average in Finland).
- Fast deliveries i.e., the next business day for local stocks and 3-5 days for cross-border deliveries from Central Europe.
- Simple, fast ERP/punchout integrations at no additional cost.
- A dedicated local account manager who speaks their language and can provide access to special pricing agreements thanks to Markit’s high level partnerships with numerous IT vendors e.g., HP, Lenovo, Jabra etc. and a wide variety of reporting options.
- Considerable time savings so they can focus on more strategic issues (than IT purchasing).
- Significant cost savings.
- Increased employee satisfaction - End users get fast deliveries, local language support and an easy ordering system if allowed to purchase directly.
- Redeployment of procurement personnel possible. Time savings using Markit means less people are needed for IT procurement.
- Significant IT spend savings (time and direct costs) and reduced maverick spending by employees.
- Simple, compatible e-invoicing in client’s local currency (invoices always in the agreed format based on client preferences).
- Fully optimized and customized IT procurement solution with transparent evidence of savings and reduced risk of IT supply chain disruption impacts.
- Partner (Markit) committed to compliant sustainable IT procurement options e.g., local to local deliveries and eco-label search filers can help companies meet environmental and CO2 emission targets.
Should IT buyers in multinationals have more local IT device suppliers? Or should they consolidate suppliers?
It is a dilemma for many companies. The best answer is both!
“More suppliers” reduces the risk of supply, gives more choice and price comparison options. “A consolidated supplier” creates a long-term partnership with a trusted supplier - the way forward to creating extra value and to save even more time and money. Both ARE possible, by using Markit as hundreds of multinationals in Finland and around the world already do. Markit is the “single consolidated supplier” providing access to stocks from hundreds of IT distributors. This gives clients the best of both worlds - a “marketplace as a supplier”!
The caveat of consolidating to use a marketplace-as-a-supplier is that the needs of the CPO (Chief Procurement Officer) and other company stakeholders must be met. With Markit they can be.
In our experience they need:
- A reliable and tested single system where they can centrally log in to and see available stock and prices in real time from multiple sources (local distributors) in each of the countries they handle.
- Access to an IT catalogue that combines the stock of every major distributor in the countries they are in. Once the real-time price and stock comparison is done, they need to be able to consolidate the orders at national, regional, or international levels as required.
- They need the option for each local business entity to receive an invoice and customer support in their local currency and language. They would want cast iron assurance or a tool to enable cross-border deliveries in crisis scenarios like the one we find ourselves in now and, whichever way the deliveries are made, they would need to be fast (days not weeks)!
- They want zero set-up or management fees for such a system, but still would like fast implementation and the ability to integrate with Ariba, Coupa, Ivalua or whichever punchout platform they use AND customizable purchase permissions and catalogue views for different entities and departments PLUS fully visualized spend data and reporting mechanisms.
Markit is growing fast. Why do you think Markit has been so successful in recent years?
Markit has always been growing. 30% per annum on average since 2003. The recent growth acceleration is largely due to growing recognition by multinationals that using a “marketplace as a supplier” is a more time- and cost-effective way than traditional sourcing and tendering methods. Over the past 2 years growth has been further boosted because Covid-19 and the war in Ukraine that caused so many problems for companies across the world and their traditional IT partners have not been able to supply reliably.
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