Advellence implements Syndigo MDM at Sana Einkauf & Logistik
Before the MDM project with Syndigo as the technology provider and Advellence as the integration service provider, Sana was in a great dependency on the legacy system, on the further development of which Sana itself could not exert any influence.
The enormous complexity and increasing requirements with regard to the amount of information and completeness put pressure on the entire market. Sana also felt this, which is why a more modern and flexible technology for master data maintenance was needed.
The goal of the MDM project was to manage and provide all article master data, including price information, in a central system to supply Sana Einkauf & Logistik’s own ERP system as well as those of its cooperation partners.
In addition, the customers of Sana purchasing, logistics – i.e., clinics and other healthcare facilities – were to be given the opportunity to request and research data themselves via a user interface, to call up prices, and to obtain information via downloads and interfaces and play it into their own ERP system.
Our goal was to manage and provide all article master data, including price information, in a central system. This was then to supply both our own ERP system and that of our approximately 1,500 cooperation partners with the material master data. Only a scalable system can provide the basis for managing such a large volume of data flexibly – so it was clear that a central MDM solution was needed. To date, Sana has used the e-procurement provider’s technology and managed data in many different tables and storage locations, which naturally made accessing information much more difficult.
The two main criteria for system selection were native cloud technology and system flexibility. We no longer want to run software in-house, which is why we now consider cloud solutions exclusively. As a purchasing group, we negotiate with a wide variety of companies and need to be able to map variable prices. At the same time, in the medical sector, it is important to be able to find equivalences quickly and reliably – for example, if certain products are not available. For the data model, this meant that we had to be able to form unrestricted networks between any entities.
The first important goal was, of course, to provide quality-checked and networked material master data to all our relevant internal systems as well as to our cooperation partners. We obtain most of our data from the HCDP (Healthcare Content Data Portal) master data portal, which is already validated by the COVIN (Content Validation Network) framework. However, since not all data comes from the HCDP, but from other data sources up to Excel tables from our manufacturers, we have replicated the COVIN set of rules in the MDM System so that all master data has a quality standard.
In order for our cooperation partners to have access to our provided data, Advellence also built a headless front end on top of the MDM System. Now, the approximately 4,500 users can easily search for data themselves and download it accordingly or obtain it through a direct connection to their ERP system.
Oliver Schönfeld has been supporting the implementation of Syndigo as Project Manager MDM Systems since 2019 and works intensively with Advellence in this role. Prior to this, he was able to gain several years of experience in the areas of purchasing and project management.
As a purchasing organization, Sana Einkauf & Logistik leads purchasing negotiations for its approximately 3,000 customers with the various manufacturers of medical products, medical and operating technology. With up to 350 million individual item prices, this means enormous complexity for the data model.
At the same time, the demands on the quality and completeness of this data are constantly growing, as is the need to be able to find and procure alternative products quickly, which requires a high degree of networking between the items.
With its cloud-native technology, the generic and thus highly flexible data model, Syndigo was the right choice for the project to maintain all master data centrally in one place, to enrich it with the necessary content and to build automated links.
For the best possible support of the cooperation partners, a headless user interface was also built, through which they can directly access the article master data, research data, retrieve prices and either download the information or play it into their own ERP systems via interfaces.
Today, Sana has access to all master data at a central location – including all its own classifications, purchasing decision abbreviations and negotiation containers managed on the articles. As a result, inquiries can be processed much faster and price calculations can be optimally supported. Article creation and maintenance will also be greatly optimized in the future: Rule sets will procure the necessary content and automatically build links.
While the number of internal employees who also have write access to the system is to be kept rather small, around 3,500 users now access the system via the headless front end.
Although the quality of the procured data is already assured due to an upstream check by the master data portal HCDP, the COVIN (Content Validation Network) rules used there to ensure the minimum requirements for master data were replicated in the Syndigo system in order to check and validate the data that is not yet procured via the HCDP portal using the same criteria. Data quality is enormously important, especially for medical data – for example, in order to be able to react quickly in the event of recalls or to find alternative products quickly and reliably in precarious supply situations.
Procuring content for enriching the master data in MDM and linking it is the next big task for the project team. This is especially true as the need for resilient supply grows due to the rapid provision of alternatives in today’s times of crisis due to pandemic and war. This task will become very burdensome as there is no data source today that can provide this information across suppliers. Even classification standards such as ECLASS and global data pools such as the GDSN hardly provide enough content beyond basic data so far.
In addition, digital services are to be expanded and apps developed for full hospital care, for example.
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Sana Einkauf & Logistik is a purchasing organization for hospitals and other healthcare facilities of Sana Kliniken AG such as hospital pharmacies or university medicine. In total, the cooperation comprises around 3,000 customers and 3,500 suppliers, and around 2.5 million material master data – including around 1 million with price information – are managed. Since the core business of Sana is negotiating terms and prices with a wide variety of companies, the pricing model is very complex, resulting in about 350 million individual item prices.
The aim of the purchasing association is to increase the efficiency in the procurement of medical products, medical technology, operating technology and more for all cooperation partners through strategic and centralized purchasing negotiations. In addition, Sana handles full hospital supply for more than 30 clinics, from operational purchasing to warehousing and material transport.