Global population forecasts say the world’s population will reach almost 8.5 billion by 2030. With the speed at which AI, computational processing power and robotics are developing, it is safe to predict that the global workforce and demands will change markedly in the near future. Job functions will transform rapidly following the pace of technology, so a priority should be to have a workforce that is educated and adaptable, ready to adjust to changing competency demands.
The recent domino effect of disruptions, such as Brexit, the pandemic and the war in Ukraine, has inevitably resulted in a huge strain on business’ supply chains. It’s a difficult landscape to navigate, but disruption is a fundamental part of the supply chain and organizations should be taking measures to mitigate these challenges.
The public’s imagination has been heavily shaped by science fiction, with the term AI evoking images of robots like WALL-E, C3PO from Star Wars and David from Stephen Spielberg’s movie A.I. Scientists and technologists refer to this kind of humanlike AI as “general artificial intelligence.” General AI attempts to mimic the kind of abstract thought and typical problem-solving skills seen in humans.
For decades, procurement teams have been connecting people across their organizations with suppliers capable of delivering what those people need, when they need it and at the right price. For a very long time, that was enough to see the department deliver strong, consistent value to the business. However, with the rise of the internet and ecommerce came new abilities and greater empowerment for individuals. The veil was lifted on suppliers, and consumers and employees gained the power to source what they need directly from global suppliers.
It’s Friday afternoon and you are finishing the last of the week’s Human Resources (HR) duties before heading off to a relaxing weekend with friends. Just as you cross that last item off your list you receive a call from your Chief Human Resource Officer. You answer, hoping that any ask might wait until next week. Unfortunately, what you hear on the other end of the line is an HR nightmare and you realize that Friday night cocktail will need to wait a little longer.
The CPO for a financial services company recently asked me for reasons to use purchase orders. Their procurement group was receiving pushback from the firm's Finance division, which was happy to issue payments merely based on internal management just "approving" supplier invoices (grrr).
In my email to this executive, I put together a list of Top 10 Reasons to Use Purchase Orders which I’ll explain in this article.
Thinking back to the onset of the pandemic, supply chain disruption was one of the immediate commercial concerns. And while we may have thought that vaccines would bring us out of the woods, supply chain issues continue to be exacerbated by large-scale disruptions.
When it comes to business, there’s a lot of talk about efficiency. The concept of efficiency, however, differs for larger corporations. When poor processes, communications and technologies prevail, the consequences are substantial. These inefficiencies hinder collaboration, visibility, compliance and, ultimately, growth.
Extensive disruption at the beginning of the decade put resilience at the top of the agenda for most organizations. Now the focus is on how digital procurement solutions can be used to boost agility.
The global COVID-19 pandemic put supply chain management and procurement in a very bright and positive spotlight for keeping life moving as normal as possible during all the shutdowns, disruption and general uncertainty.
It also highlighted that business and supply chain disruption are ongoing facts of life – such as ongoing extreme weather events globally and a megaship blocking the Suez Canal for weeks, to name just two. And the impacts created a snowball effect on other industries:
Global businesses have now spent nearly two years navigating the various challenges of the pandemic. Although some of the fallout was predictable, the dramatic impact we have witnessed on the global employment market was more unexpected. Companies that were already adjusting to new ways of working now find themselves in the middle of arguably the worst employment crisis in modern history—a phenomenon known as the Great Resignation.
The government procurement industry represents a spend of nearly $13 trillion globally every year. This spend involves buying goods and services to run day-to-day operations, including basic items such as computers, office equipment, medical items, legal services, gas and electricity for everyday needs to more complex construction and infrastructure projects.
In our era of labor shortages and rising inflation, business leaders need to focus on doing everything they can to operate more efficiently and maintain margins and profitability. A key way to do this is by deploying automation that enables organizations to become less reliant on labor.
What Does a Data Driven Supply Chain Look Like?
The key to improving any system is information. A data-driven supply chain is built around this concept, leveraging big data and analytics to improve processes at every level of the supply chain. A wide range of technologies contribute to this, from interconnected IoT sensors to warehouse robots and everything in between.
According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, citing analysis by COMPTIA, in January 2022 employers posted close to 340,000 unfilled IT job openings, which was 11% higher than the 12-month average. The huge demand for software and AI expertise can be attributed to heightened demand for IT services brought on by the pandemic, but also a growing tech talent shortage that has been in the works for some time.