We have a vendor file of 8,000 and we find a duplicate rate of 2.8 percent. Do you have any data on the average number of duplicate vendors in a vendor master file?

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The percent of duplicates in a vendor master file (VMF) typically increases as the number of vendors increase. According to Jon Casher of Recap, Inc. the following represent average duplicate rates as follows:

  • Vendor files with 100 or fewer vendors rarely have duplicates
  • Vendor files with 100-1,000 vendors typically have around 1-3 percent redundant vendors.
  • Vendor files with 1,000-10,000 vendors generally have 2-6 percent redundant.
  • Vendor files with 10,000-100,000 vendors typically have 4-10 percent redundant.
  • Vendor files with 100,000 vendors primarily have over 10 percent redundant.

The number of redundant vendors that are actually in a company's VMF is often twice as big as they think, Casher says. For example, a company with approximately 150,000 vendors typically will have around 30,000 redundant. If you include inactive vendors the numbers are much higher. Companies with extremely clean vendor master files will find a very low redundancy rate.

The following are reasons why some companies might have a higher number of redundant vendors than the average ranges:

  • Two or more companies may have merged
  • The company has many federal, state and local governments in its vendor master file.
  • The company has converted from a system that allows only one address per vendor such as GEAC-E or GEAC-M, to a system that allows multiple addresses per vendor such as Oracle or PeopleSoft.
  • Multiple people and/or multiple departments are allowed to add vendors.
  • There is inconsistent handling of "Doing Business As."
  • Vendors are added via automated feeds from other systems.
  • Each business unit or legal entity has its own set of vendors.
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