Build It Better

Is granular data a help or hinderance to complex rebate deals?

Data is the new oil – a vast (often untapped) reservoir built up over the years and buried deep in an organization which, when extracted and processed correctly, can fuel a revolution within both your industry and your business.

As the world becomes more and more data driven, it becomes necessary to examine processes and identify whether utilizing more accurate and granular data will truly aid in the improvement of a function – providing significant benefits – or will simply waste resource without providing any advantages over your existing practices.

This blog post aims to describe how having more granular data to drive your rebate deals can help your business to unlock meaningful revenue streams and even improve existing ones.

What is granular data?

A simple explanation for the term “granular data” is that it refers to data which is at the lowest level possible and cannot be broken down any further.

For example, take rebate earnings data. This could be one value which represents your total rebate earnings for the year (not providing you much benefit), or could be broken down by product, branch and day so that you can scrutinise which products are responsible for earning the most rebate at a given branch for a certain time period.

Naturally, this lower-level information is considered the more “granular” and clearly provides an advantage to the higher-level data because it could be used to drive behaviour at a branch by indicating which products earn the most rebate.

How does the granularity of my data impact my complex rebate deals?

Complex rebate deals are often negotiated to provide the most benefit to your business, however due to their complexity these deals are difficult to administer and often result in the most disputes!

If you employ a dedicated rebate management system and feed it with granular data, you can ensure that even the most complex rebate deals are being calculated correctly – reducing any disputes which arise due to inconsistencies between your data and your trading partners data.

A key problem with aggregated data is that it reduces your flexibility to negotiate certain deals (such as region specific agreements) which could unlock new revenue streams for your business. Some businesses see these types of deals to be too complex to manage in their legacy systems using the data that they currently have easy access to, however much of the complexity can be taken away by using a rebate management system. Other businesses rely on their trading partners data because they do not have confidence in their own. This is naturally fraught with risk and involves periods of delay while limiting the power of any analysis.

Further, with data provided at a daily granularity, you can report on your position on complex deals in real time, empowering your organisation to make the best decisions about your rebate deals more frequently, increase cash flow by identifying opportunities to realize earnings quicker and ensuring that your accruals can be accurate each day.

How does Enable support granular data?

Enable supports automated data imports at whatever level of granularity our customers wish to provide their data at.

Within the rebate management system, rebate claims are automatically calculated for your deals and the results can then be analyzed down to the level that the data was initially provided. Typically, this means providing a view of earnings by product, branch and delivery type. We also have an API for customers who prefer to integrate this way.

This level of detail and automated processing of rebates can significantly alter your business in two ways:

  1. Reducing the effort involved to be 100% accurate with rebate claims
  2. Having all information in one place on which to negotiate better deals in the future

This results in increased cash flow and a platform for smarter negotiations which result in better deals. Our rebate management solution makes the process easy, prevents mistakes and helps ensure you are claiming everything you are owed.

In addition, all transaction information is stored centrally allowing you to model new deal structures and view the impact these could have on your margins before you enter negotiations. Armed with this information, procurement teams can collaborate with suppliers to their mutual benefit and are empowered to make better decisions.

Granular data can help you find lost earnings

When companies can extract granular data (moving from purchase invoices to goods receipts or even purchase orders), they aren’t just able to improve rebate accuracy and model different types of deals; they are able to find lost revenue in existing deals going back several years!

Some of our clients have just switched to using granular data and typically test this data on their historic deals. Depending on the terms agreed, some of our customers have even managed to successfully claim these previously lost earnings – providing immediate benefit to focussing on the accuracy of their data.

To find out more about granular data, watch our webinar in full below.