Technological innovation is exploding and impacting every aspect of every organization, and procurement is not immune to the challenges and opportunities it presents. The difficult question those working in the procurement industry need to ask is: what will I do tomorrow when technology can do what I am doing today?
This is not a case of artificial intelligence and machines inevitably taking over the world. It is instead a discussion about the future of procurement and technology’s transformative impact. We have found ourselves at a crossroads: do we passively receive the introduction of new technologies and greater levels of automation, or do we take an active role in shaping how we co-exist with new systems that can enable us to deliver more value to the organization?
It is likely that procurement will ultimately cease to be the function that creates RFIs, RFQs and RFPs as technology will make it easy for stakeholders to do it themselves, without the need for intervention. After all, who needs negotiating skills (on both sides of a transaction), pricing discovery or background checking skills when algorithms with price and supplier quality transparency mean it can all be done quicker than more traditional methods?
If we take these profound implications for the procurement industry as a “fait accompli,” then there must be someone who can help the CIO and IT teams create, manage and monitor this new infrastructure. The role of the procurement professional will evolve to focus on more value-added activities, such as initially challenging stakeholders about their requirements and providing the change management to support stakeholders in making the right decisions. After all, procurement is essentially a service function that needs to deliver a great customer experience through the application of technology, imparting expertise, delivering market awareness, introducing new approaches to engaging suppliers and challenging conventional ways of thinking.
The technology experts speaking at eWorld:
At eWorld Procurement & Supply, Guy Strafford, the Chairman of Carbon Quota and a procurement and supply chain industry veteran of over 25 years in the UK and US, will chair a panel to debate these pivotal issues for the procurement industry in a session titled ‘How to Stay Agile and Adapt in a Tech-led Future.’
Taking place at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London on Tuesday 28th February, Guy will be joined by Rob Turner, Director of procurement and supply chain at Deliveroo, David Wylie, CPO at Thames Water, Rob Copeland, former CPO at G4S, and Juliet Sotnick, Vice President of procurement and supply chain at IHS Towers.
Change is coming, and only the agile and adaptable will thrive.
Register today and be at the forefront of embracing the new best-of-breed technologies which will drive the future transformation of procurement. Secure your place free-of-charge now by visiting eWorld Procurement & Supply.