From sourcing raw materials and services to managing contracts and relationships with suppliers, procurement and supply management is a complex, strategic, challenging, and ultimately rewarding sector to work in. Professionals in this space enable an organization to operate in a profitable and ethical manner.
Companies can spend more than 70% of their revenue on procurement, according to the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply (CIPs). So, even small cost reductions can have a big impact on the bottom line. Klaus Neuhas, partner at Bain, asserts, “Skilled procurement team can reduce a company’s purchasing cost base by eight to 12% – enough for big companies to save billions. Procurement is the biggest lever companies have for optimizing costs.”
Companies such as SAP Ariba are just one of the companies trying to change the amount of money spent on procurement. Based in Palo Alto, the company slogan is, “Make Procurement Awesome.” The company may be little known among consumers, but more than 3.4m companies across 190 countries use the Ariba Network to process $2.1tn worth of transactions each year. The goal of SAP Ariba, according to its president, Barry Padgett, is to take the “back-office, after-the-fact process of procurement and push it to the forefront of cost saving strategy (FT). Similarly, Coupa offers a user-friendly cloud platform for business management spend (BSM). Ranked by Gartner as a leader in completeness of vision and highest for ability to execute, Coupa is used by household names such as Unilever and P&G to enable end-to-end procure-to-pay processes. Coupa gives procurement teams full visibility on company-wide spending to identify saving opportunities; helping position procurement as a key strategic function.
As we progress towards further digitalization worldwide, the role of a procurement professional will continue to change rapidly. The Fourth Industrial revolution will create new opportunities for professionals who are willing to familiarize themselves with new technologies such as automation, artificial intelligence, and the internet of things. These tools will give companies a competitive advantage as they can continuously improve their procurement management systems to better control cost and enforce compliance. According to a recent report produced by DHL, 33% of the current procurement workforce is at or beyond retirement age, leaving many teams with an aging workforce.
As the talent pool becomes increasingly tight, ambitious procurement professionals have a unique opportunity to capitalize on high demand for digital skills to advance their career further and faster. DSJ Global has partnered with Procurement Leaders to share insight on how procurement organizations can secure talent in this competitive market. At the recent Procurement Leaders: Agility & Transformation Forum DSJ Global hosted a round table on how to become a “talent magnet” for top procurement professionals, and how to improve the talent pipeline for this increasingly in demand procurement skill set. DSJ Global was awarded Best Procurement Service Provider by Procurement Leaders, highlighting our commitment to securing top procurement talent for our clients globally.