As the role of procurement continues to evolve, so must the approach to digitally transform. Leaders must adopt a new mindset and new processes in order to manage risk and compliance across business lines. Although there is no one size fits all solution, there are technological developments and approaches that are leading the charge. The ability to manage change is paramount, and as regulatory requirements shift and new technologies disrupt business models, procurement teams must adapt.
Successful procurement leaders are ensuring their organizations are agile and can evolve to meet developing objectives and changing priorities. That means being flexible in processes but also making sure that technology will support rather than hinder your strategy. By acting as a strategic partner, proactive planning can facilitate transformation as expectations advance. Here are a few things to consider:
- Embrace Digitization
Digitization is far more than just a buzzword, it is increasing organizational efficiency and should be embraced. According to SAP Ariba’s 2019 CPO Survey, 83.9% of participants consider digitalization important to improve procurement performance, noting that digitization of the source-to-pay process is a key initiative for many CPO’s. Emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence will only accelerate digital transformation and help teams meet goals including automation, cost savings, and improved compliance. With these technological advances have come heightened anxiety around job security, however, automation should not be feared. By embracing digitization and using it to your advantage, procurement teams are positioned to produce high-value work and drive transformation to reduce risk.
- Understand the Data
It’s easy to get caught up in innovations such as artificial intelligence without investing in the proper foundation for success. Inability to access data and poor data quality continue to be cited as a hindrance to digital transformation and AI potential. Successful procurement leaders must work smarter, not harder, to leverage analytics and technology appropriately. With solutions such as enterprise contract analytics, procurement and sourcing teams can gain complete visibility into their contract data to enable better decision making and reduce risk. This insight allows procurement teams to better manage legal and regulatory exposure while delivering actionable insights to key stakeholders. If you want to use digitization to your advantage and equip your organization with the ability to navigate their own transformation, you must remember that quality data is your foundation.
- Innovate and Take Action
Digital disruption equips organizations with the knowledge and opportunity to innovate. When working through your procurement transformation strategy, organizations should review existing procurement functions as they plan for the future and gauge technology adoption. Leveraging technology that can bring you results quickly and empower you to go beyond is fundamental to the process. By taking proactive measures to increase digital maturity and drive innovation, procurement teams will only be in a better position to succeed and drive value for their business.