Supply Market Research

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What Exactly is Supply Market Intelligence (SMI)?

Simply defined, SMI is the gathering of external information that strategically supports any or all supply-related business decisions within an organization. Formerly defined, SMI is created when external information is collected and analyzed to form actionable conclusions that affect a company’s ability to strategically locate, secure, and manage sources of supply.

The importance of SMI has emerged over the years as globalization and CSR (corporate social responsibility) initiatives have spotlighted the need to understand all risks associated with the supply chain. This has led to a more focused examination of supplier intelligence and the need to understand the markets and industries in which suppliers are operating. For strategic sourcing, supply chain, and procurement initiatives, SMI is a widely recognized strategic component.

SMI is Constantly Evolving

SMI is in a constant state of change as continuous technological advances are being made in the delivery of SMI products and services. Many startups and disrupters offering supply chain and procurement-related solutions are utilizing exciting fresh ways of integrating quality supplier and market risk data to help form intelligence at a pace not seen before. Providers, both traditional and newly forming, are introducing innovative offerings most notably in the areas of generative AI and data unification.

Why SMI is so Challenging

Professionals, both in large and small organizations, have historically found SMI initiatives challenging due to of the amount of valuable time that is taken to gather information and the high cost involved with purchasing resources. Now, decisions are being made about whether to obtain market and risk data from standalone resources or those integrated into full or partial end-to-end Procuretech offerings and/or made available via associated marketplaces. Add to this the movement towards providers offering unified/single views of data and the challenges grow even more complex. In addition, there is a marked uptick in concern about AI generated content that misleads and/or misinforms.

Why Cottrill Research is Unique

To tackle these challenges, now more than ever, providers of supply market research need to be holistic in their knowledge of available data resources, including continuously keeping up with new product launches and updates to existing offerings. Cottrill Research takes advantage of its deep knowledge of both open access and high quality fee-based resources and operates on two founding guiding principles:

  1. the quality of research provided is determined by the quality of resources used, and
  2. quality information does not always have to be expensive.

Procurement and business professionals continuously make critical decisions that affect their stakeholders and the organization as a whole. These decisions can be major and directly impact strategy, operations, and risk concerns. Cottrill Research understands that not every organization has the same research needs and, at times, requires targeted research that is ad hoc in nature. This customized approach ensures that the specialized information requested is carefully vetted for quality and that critical decisions based on the data can be made with total confidence.

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