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Centralized vs. Decentralized System

Is a Centralized or Decentralized system right for your Vendor Management Program?

Best Practice Guideline – Centralized vs Decentralized System

VendorInsight® is a system that offers many features, customization options and choices regarding the use. While it is helpful knowing you can tailor the system to your organization’s needs, it can be overwhelming when it comes to selecting what is best suited for implementing your policies and procedures.

Whether or not you wish to allow users to initiate and potentially edit assessments within the system leads to the question that is the topic for this guideline: “Should we deploy a Centralized or Decentralized system?”.

This question is asked during the initial VendorInsight® Implementation Project, but you may also decide to update your selection at any time if you decide the initial choice does not work for your process.

Here are some facts that may help you decide:

  • Is a Centralized System Right for Your Organization?

A Centralized System allows your Vendor Management team to control who has access to the Vendor Risk Assessment (VRA) and the Vendor Performance Assessment (VPS). When the Centralized option is enabled for either assessment, only certain users can initiate an assessment. This stops users from going into the system to initiate and answer assessments before your process dictates it is time. It also allows the Vendor Management team to not only initiate the assessment(s), but to send to the appropriate Subject Matter Experts for answers rather than users trying to answer questions they may not know the answers to. You can use the Centralized option in conjunction with the assessment locks in the system to ensure less unwanted access.

You are able to turn on the Centralized option for only the VRA, only the VPS, or for both.

  • Is a Decentralized System Right for Your Organization?

By default, VendorInsight® is Decentralized. This means a user with “User” or “Supervisor” access can go into an assessment for a contract they are assigned to and initiate the assessment(s) before it is time. This setting can lead to assessments sitting as “Pending” or “Outstanding” on reports, or assessments with incorrect answers if the users have answered the questions.

If you intend to allow your users, particularly Contract Owners, to have more responsibility in the system, this option may be right for your organization. The user would be allowed to initiate the assessment(s), and you could have your process state when this should be done.

  • Still Undecided?

If you are still unsure about which option is best for your organization, remember you can always reach out to your VI Program Administrator for help.