Procurement has to make sure that it’s ready for the 21st century and, with digital advances transforming every industry, it’s important to know how this is set to change the sourcing landscape for the better.
Here are the top three technologies that will help sourcing and procurement professionals in 2018 and beyond.
Artificial intelligence in spend analysis
Experts have opined that spend analysis software has not helped procurement. In fact, the digitisation of this process so far has not only made it time-consuming but also prone to errors. As a result, procurement professionals are unable to make suitable decisions to react quickly to changing market conditions.
This is one of the main reasons why new spend analysis tools will incorporate artificial intelligence (AI) to make it easier for professionals to analyse spend and quickly react to changing conditions.
Online marketplaces for tail spend management
Tail spend has not yet been given the importance that it deserves. However, that is changing with the launch of online marketplaces like Amazon Business and 1688.com. These platforms promise easier and more effective tail spend management.
Companies will be looking to use corporate accounts for tail spend on online marketplaces, and will also be making use of the P2P software that is compatible with these platforms. In addition to this, organisations will have guidelines for employees informing them of the purchases that they can make or not make at these e-marketplaces.
Introduction of virtual assistants and chatbots in P2P software
Experts believe that in the next five years, pay-to-procure (P2P) software will have virtual assistants and chatbots to help with the procurement process. These technologies will be able to assist at every stage of the purchasing process, so that they can find the best buying channel and payment method.
It is anticipated that the initial conversations with the chatbots and virtual assistants will be text-based, but in a few years, it will transition to voice responses. This procurement technology should be able to resolve invoice discrepancies and add value to the entire procurement process.
The final words
Procurement technology is growing by leaps and bounds, as organisations look for ways to reduce spend and optimise delivery to internal and external stakeholders. This, in turn, is spurring the development of the procurement technology market.
Steve has over 28 years of success as CPO, MD and Procurement BPO leader in a range of industries. Steve is COO at Odesma, responsible for Odesma’s delivery capability & infrastructure.