The COVID-19 pandemic has changed every part of human life, nothing is left from the personal to the professional sphere. Several setbacks, an outbreak of new virus variants, and constant supply chain disarrangements have left an adverse impact on the procurement sector. After passing through the first two waves, now the world is slowly coming out of the grip of the COVID-19 virus.
The market experts are hopeful about the future of procurement in the next few years. Despite facing some real-time challenges posed by the pandemic, the sector is heading towards a bright and prosperous future. If you are running a business and want to manage the procurement department with efficiency, you need to learn about the vital trends that will help the procurement agents to bring success.
8 Trends Procurement Agents Need To Follow In 2022
Last year, many experts opined that governments and businesses across the world would not prioritize a green recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic. For restoring the economy, and bringing it to a normal state, financial stability needs the maximum attention.
For example, many leaders requested the U.S. government to relax the environmental regulations for a time being, while others wanted to keep the development on hold and initiate the activities for preserving sustainability. This trend is going to stay in the next year. This shift towards green logistics and the dedication to the environment will further improve sustainability.
Deployment Of Technologies
Like other sectors, procurement is also under the spell of technologies. Many procurement agents stated that organizations are greatly moved by some trending technologies, such as:
Procurement and supply chain executives will be continuously experimenting with blockchain technology even in 2022. It will improve the transparency in the supply chain and preserve the confidentiality of sensitive data.
In 2022, procurement managers will enjoy voice-enabled bots that help both the suppliers and the business. These cutting-edge bots can answer procurement queries and provide order details, such as the latest shipping status.
New Procurement KPIs
Procurement functions in a strictly contained business unit. Many of their key performance indicators or KPIs are set internally. As procurement is now driven by a strategic force in business, the goals need to be aligned with more straightforward objectives.
Creating such alignment is a bit difficult. The leaders should identify the opportunities that can contribute to the growth of the department. Working collaboratively with other procurement heads is required to align the goals to keep up with the digital transformation.
Increasing Focus On SMEs And Minority-Owned Suppliers
The last eighteen months have witnessed the increasing importance of nurturing SMEs and minority-owned suppliers. At the time of crisis caused by the pandemic, the suppliers have been affected badly. For instance, they may not have adequate stock to struggle against increasing demand for their products or services. In the coming year, procurement will need more effort and support from the suppliers. The agencies will re-evaluate contract terms to provide advance payment options. Moreover, procurement agents will be inclined towards supplier programs.
It is obvious that the pandemic will increase the need for zero-touch procurement. It eliminates the requirement of papers, spreadsheets, or other manual documents. Moreover, it negates the requirements of human interference; this way, it minimizes physical contracts and reduces errors. This zero-touch procurement process is good for both parties. It will help stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus while running the supply chain continuously.
The year 2022 will witness the dominance of indirect procurement and it will bring a permanent shift to remote working. As a majority of the workforce is dedicated to arranging more home offices for some of their working weeks, the indirect procurement professionals will be able to support this transition. As the traditional workplace has become a thing of the past, the need for the office-based setup will be steadily declined. On the other hand, the procurement sector will develop new policies for enabling the workforce to buy what they need from a new team of preferred suppliers.
The utility of procurement inside the organization shows how valuable it is for the C-suite. The emerging awareness of the vitality of procurement will bring more opportunities for the entire industry.
To preserve momentum, procurement leadership needs to convey their value beyond the mere cost-efficiency. Additionally, the shifting mindset will get more collaboratively both internally and externally.
Importance Of Newcomers
In the coming years, the procurement industry will be occupied by newcomers. For saving costs, businesses will want to collaborate with the newbies. These new suppliers will also strive to provide high-quality products at affordable prices to capture the market.
While confronting challenges in the coming years, the procurement agents must keep agility in mind. They should be looking for opportunities dynamically. Overall, the future of the procurement industry is looking bright and promising.