Procurement Trends: Readers are always asking what the next big thing is coming down the pike that is likely to affect their job and the industry at large. In this digital age, new trends and technologies are ever popping up on the horizon, making the ability to change and adapt quickly critical to success. Each unit of a business needs to work together like a well-oiled machine to ensure the success of the company. Teamwork keeps employees, business partners and customers happy and causes your profits to fly skyward.
In order to obtain the most recent information, we spoke with experts from several different industries to get their opinions on the most important procurement trends. Five of these trends are listed below.
The Rise of the Millennial Creating New Procurement Trends
The millennial is changing the landscape of the e-commerce world with the mobile device. According to the Economist, millennials hold 34 percent of all business positions in 2015 compared to 29 percent for baby boomers. Unlike other demographic groups, the millennial expects to have the ability to work anywhere, at any time, with any device (e.g., laptop, smartphone, desktop).
Almost half of all business-to-business online researchers are millennials. Forty-two percent of these B2B buyers use a mobile device at some point during the purchasing process. According to another study, 74 percent of all purchasers research half of their work processes online. This percent is expected to increase during the year 2016. In order to keep up with this trend, companies should focus on improving communication with the millennial B2B purchaser. Those who have millennial employees will need to ensure that their expectations for flexibility and the latest technology are met.
Strategic Self-Service: The New Full Service
The term “always on” is especially applicable to e-commerce. Did you know that moving to a self-serve e-commerce environment can reduce client service costs by up to 90 percent? The reduction of order management and better customer support is often the result of a self-serve environment. Although society may seesaw back and forth on whether this mentality will actually help boost productivity, businesses who reinvent themselves in order to better serve will continue to hold their own.
Full service is not the only improvement needed in communication for procurement trends business. The key to success is greater visibility and a stronger communication between business partners and suppliers. Cloud-based networks enable buyers and suppliers to collaborate in streamlining the ordering process and managing global transportation. Any needed adjustments can be made along the way with complete transparency regarding shipment locations. Customers and partners will be happy every step of the way. Although supply transparency is not among the new procurement trends, it is one that should receive an increased focus over previous years. From paddock to plate and manufacturing plant to store shelf, there is a wide variety of supply chain areas that can and will be tracked.
Data Breaches and Terms of Supplier Contracts
According to studies, 78 percent of all organizations have experienced a data breach between 2014 and now. Procurement departments are decidedly not immune to either immediate or long-term effects of a data breach. Omission of data breach verbiage or language in a contract can have a terrible impact in the procurement department and the company at large.
Artificial Intelligence and Procurement Departments Are Best Buddies
Natural language processing (NLP) and artificial intelligence (AI) can work together in a surprisingly efficient team with automation, insight and efficiency. Other spheres where this combination can be effective include supplier obligation compliance, KPI monitoring and adhering to regulatory compliance changes.
The recent time has been predicted to be “interesting” as far as procurement trends go. Based on the trends of the last several years, experts believe that there will be a lot of changes. Ensuring that you and your business are ready to implement these changes in procurement trends will help you stay afloat in the months ahead.