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We’re witnessing rapid advancements in digital technologies remaking business supply chains. It’s a matter of time before they start to transform procurement functions as well. What used to be the exception is now the norm. As low-cost computing and data storage allows for constant connectivity, bringing about the Internet of Things, we’re bracing for future procurement models that will be more agile, all-inclusive and supplier-oriented.
In the last two decades, the global digital revolution has reshaped procurement in two major ways: digitalisation and automation. Procurement is no longer a web of interconnected processes and tasks, it is s a real-time and global activity. As strategic sourcing becomes more predictive, transactional procurement is becoming more automated, and supplier relationship management is becoming more proactive. All of these need to be integrated through intelligent procurement operations that help companies reduce risk and scale to their growing needs.
What does smart procurement in the digital age Look Like?
Every organization and business knows that the future requires different and flexible operating models to keep pace with the digital domain. Technology disruptors will naturally drive the automation of low value tasks moving the workforce to higher value activities, such as category innovation. However, we’ve now reached a point where these activities will require a high degree of cross-skilling to allow the workforce to take advantage of external insights, and basically execute more with less.
At Trakti, we believe the next driving trend shaping future procurement can be found in the blockchain sector. Or more specifically, smart contract technology. Few things are able to deliver more complex analysis and better supplier strategies while enabling more efficient operations at the same time.
Positioning ourselves somewhere between the enterprise vendors and the “new school.” Needless to say, this approach is part of the reason we’ve been named as one of the Future 5 startups by Spend Matters. We view this step in Trakti’s evolution as a sign that our approach to refining procurement is the right one since organizations are now looking to embrace new technology more than ever. And smart contracts work to enhance the value of legacy systems, involve minimal investment, have low requirements for integration, and have payback periods measured in months not years.
The inclusion of such technology in the procurement process adds value in purchasing. It also helps organizations create a technological foundation and use the full spectrum of the tools that are available. Doing so is a multi-stage process that successively creates the necessary level of maturity: getting the right data accessible across the entire procurement organization.
As such, future excellence will depend upon procurement’s ability to strategically determine new ways to access, analyze and combine big data from many sources and shape procurement interventions. To do this we need to turn the art of procurement into science and highly successful startups like Trakti with the right approach and technology act as key value enablers for future procurement models.