With 2021 coming to a close, it's time to get out the crystal ball and make some predictions for the year ahead. The last two years have been a steep learning curve for many businesses and the procurement professionals who are so vital in supporting functioning supply chains. Political, social, and environmental disruption have made supply chains even more complex, multi-tiered, and convoluted.
As we come to terms that this level of disruption will likely continue to accelerate in 2022 - procurement, finance, risk, and sustainability leaders will again be at the forefront of managing the risks and opportunities in their company's supply chain. So to help navigate the year ahead - here are my top 3 predictions for 2022.
1 - Digital procurement solutions will be business-critical in managing ongoing disruption
AI-powered business intelligence platforms that consolidate disparate data points will be essential to stay on top of supplier risk and enable companies to respond to further challenges quickly. Procurement teams will be called upon to use existing data to make rapid assessments on the resilience and sustainability of their suppliers, track supplier performance, and make critical business decisions.
2 - Effectively managing environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks in the supply chain will be a competitive advantage
In 2022 - there are no longer any excuses for not effectively managing ESG risks in your supply chain. Capital providers and consumers are noticing, and they'll be voting with their wallets. Companies that can best address and manage ESG performance in their supply base will be rewarded with better (and cheaper) access to capital and a growing customer base.
3 - Finding savings will be essential to manage rising cost pressures
The sharp price rises in goods and services we experienced in 2021 look set to continue into the new year. While there are much more intelligent people making predictions on the impacts of inflation and how central banks will respond - one thing is for sure - companies are going to have to do all they can to manage their supply chain costs.
Finding savings has been the main game in procurement for decades, though it arguably has taken a slight back seat the last few years due to the abundance of cheap capital. In 2022 procurement professionals will be tasked with finding savings and will need to use best-in-class spend analytics tools to help clean and classify their supplier data.
Leading procurement professionals will kick off 2022 with a Spend Diagnostic to extract the information they need to identify category savings opportunities, rationalize suppliers, optimize payment terms, and improve working capital.
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