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Duplicate Suppliers Found in 2 Days with Experian Pandora

A project at a large UK-based company aims to trim 5% off costs in the coming year by identifying common suppliers

Derek Munro 2 minute read Data quality

An analyst has used Experian Pandora to improve spend analytics and optimise supplier negotiations by finding duplicate suppliers across multiple systems and countries in less than two days.

Since external spend is equivalent to 10-15% of revenue for most large organisations, even a small reduction in costs can have a massive effect on the bottom line. An ongoing project at a large UK-based company aims to trim 5% off costs in the coming year by identifying common suppliers, improving spend analysis and subsequently negotiating better terms and conditions with suppliers.

Using Experian Pandora to analyse the supplier records it was discovered that:

  • 10% of suppliers had been entered more than once at the same location.
  • Another 5% were providing goods or services in more than one country.
  • One supplier was listed under 19 slightly different names across multiple countries.

The analysis also uncovered some unexpected surprises:

  • Multiple supplier names contained the words “regression test” or “test vendor”. This raised the question of how any related amounts could be misrepresenting the spend figures in management reporting.
  • Many of the supplier names identified as duplicates were identical in every way except for a telephone number or reference number included at the end of the name. This suggests that the business is working around unnecessary constraints in the IT systems.
  • To carry out this analysis with Experian Pandora, the analyst developed a series of rules to standardise and match supplier names. The rules coped with country names, company name add-ons (Ltd. Corp., s.a., etc.), telephone numbers and various other noise.

For example, the analysis would have identified the following suppliers as being the same company.

  • ACME
  • ACME REF. NO.9999 9999 9995 6498
  • ACME TEL: 01234 567890

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