The State of Spend Management 2019

Distributed purchasing has changed the way companies spend money.

Finance leaders in every industry have recognized that the way companies
spend money has changed. In place of centralized purchasing departments, individual employees are getting – or taking – more decision power and making purchases themselves. “End users are finding products on their own,” explains Blake Bartlett of Openview Partners. “And it’s all happening at lightning speed.”

“Bottoms-up” spending has its roots in startups, where speed and agility are often prioritized over process and compliance. As these startups have become enterprises, decentralized purchasing has become standard operating procedure for many larger businesses. This rapid evolution to a
distributed spending model has increased the speed of business and the levels of employee satisfaction. Unfortunately, it’s also created new challenges and exacerbated the age-old tug of war between maintaining control and visibility over company spending vs. empowering employees to make purchases quickly and easily.

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