The ever-popular Energy Trading Week is taking place this week in London. Ahead of the conferences, we at Gen10 have been discussing the importance of events like this in fostering conversation and collaboration within the industry.
We will be at Energy Trading Week to showcase our Commodity Management solutions and discuss how they can support collaboration – both within your organisation and across your supply chain. But today we are exploring how collaboration underpins our software philosophy, and what that means for our clients.
Collaborative Commodity Management
Gen10 develop flexible Commodity Management Systems that provide functionality beyond that of a traditional CTRM and encompass your shipping and logistics operations as well as deal capture, contract management, invoicing and risk.
Having your entire team working together on one system can transform collaboration within your organisation. Data is shared seamlessly between teams and available whenever it is needed by others. Processing workflows can automatically hand documents or tasks over to other teams and notify them of any actions needed. And because teams are managing their day-to-day activities within the system, risk reports are updated automatically, with no need to copy information across systems to give to other teams.
But we know that this is not what every commodity trader needs, so we also provide flexible integrations that allow you to collaborate across different systems. For example, if you already have a CTRM that manages your market risk, but your deal capture and contracts are managed on spreadsheets, we can provide systems that integrate with your existing technology and add the features that are currently missing. This could include deal capture, contract management, inventory management or even tools to improve your ability to automatically import data into your CTRM ecosystem.
Integrating with other systems
We have recently explored the importance of being able to get data back out of your CTRM, and the importance of being able to use this data across other systems. Many commodity traders are already using a wide range of digital tools, some of which are best-of-breed solutions in areas that aren’t covered by Commodity Management Systems. This is when it’s important to have software that can function as a data conduit across multiple systems.
For example, you may be using an ERP to manage your accounting and financial operations, Business Intelligence tools to process large datasets using data from external sources as well as your CTRM system, carbon calculators, and vessel tracking systems, to name just a few. So rather than trying to find one system with many different areas of expertise, using a collaborative model that integrates these systems and shares data as if they were one allows you to use all the best solutions for your business.
Supply chain collaboration
And as mentioned above, supply chain collaboration is also of growing importance. The competitive advantage of data used to come from being able to use information that others didn’t have before they had access to it. But as markets have become more transparent, traders are increasingly finding ways to benefit from sharing data more effectively.
Getting data into your CTRM faster allows you to work more efficiently and progress contracts faster, allowing for asset optimisation. Asset optimisation can also be achieved by getting information to operators more efficiently; the greater visibility they have over stock, client and vessel locations, the more optionality they have and the greater their ability to create the most efficient shipping strategies.
And getting access to more data from your supply chain partners can also help you realise greater value from every trade. For example, many commodities have different quality data that allow you to command a price premium, and these increasingly include sustainability metrics too. Having ready access to more types of quality and sustainability data means that you can ensure your products are sold to clients willing to pay a fair price for this higher quality and your allocations are made as efficiently as possible.
And the collaboration doesn’t only work one-way. The ability to gain a price premium based on quality data is also dependent on your organisation being able to verify and share this data with the client.
The other advantage of supply chain collaboration is that it provides more data that can be used to identify new opportunities and growth areas. Most organisations using big data are doing so to gain more insights into better ways of doing business. By working with others in your value chain, you not only have access to more relevant data, but also more resources focused on systemic improvements.
Collaboration is still evolving
External collaboration still does not come naturally to most organisations. Despite the benefits, there are still risks from oversharing information and concerns that the business will not receive value for their contributions to initiatives. But this is where having the right technology can help. A good Commodity Management System allows you to safely and securely manage all your data and share what is relevant with trusted counterparties.
Stop by the Gen10 stand at Energy Trading Week or drop us a message now to find out how collaborative Commodity Management can help power your business.
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