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ANALYSIS

E-procurement platforms: Transforming the landscape of Indian businesses
Monday, 23 March, 2020, 13 : 00 PM [IST]
Stamford, Connecticut
The global procurement analytics market size was valued at $5 billion in 2018, and is expected to reach $9.2 billion by the year 2026, at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 7.6 per cent.

In recent times, cloud has been an integral part of turning big data into meaningful insights. Cloud-based data management has made it easier for businesses of all sizes to flawlessly integrate software and hardware to create a unified data environment. 

Cloud-based tech and the IoT (Internet of Things) will continue to play important parts in the development of e-procurement platforms for 2020 and beyond.

The backbone of process optimisation and strategic sourcing is to get data analysed thoroughly in real-time and with utmost accuracy. So, Big Data plays, and will continue playing, a big role in procurement organisations.

The other upcoming trend is Blockchain, which will further enhance automation massively and improve cyber security to processes ranging from procure-to-pay (P2P) to contract management to financial and inventory audits. 

Though it has not reached the desired stage as other new technologies, this will change in 2020, as more procurement teams embrace the dynamism and the increased security, the Blockchain moves from an optional add-on to a core part of next-gen automation and security software.

As procurement teams are increasingly relying on technology to extract maximum savings and value from the supply chain, internal process optimisation, and actionable insights, it becomes more critical than ever to protect these systems from tampering, manipulation, corruption, and outright destruction. 

So, cyber-security is another trend that will be in priority in the upcoming years to safeguard sensitive information and for the smooth functioning of organisations.

Nowadays the procurement function is at the centre of business process management, helping all business units to minimise waste and expenditure while maximising value. This transformation is perhaps the most crucial in the history of procurement and it will keep growing in years to come. 

Sectors using e-procurement and what benefits are they reaping from the e-procurement service
The requirement of e-procurement solutions is not industry-specific. Large, mid-size and growing companies across industry verticals that need cost savings will certainly benefit from the e-procurement system
E-procurement eliminates the cost of procurement resources and empowers the organisations to achieve efficiency, transparency and effectiveness in procurement. Construction and real estate are some of the sectors rising actively at the e-procurement front

Market predictions (For the next three years)
The emphasis on maximising return on investment (ROI) and value creation, backed by minimal waste and expense, will remain a top priority for procurement professionals worldwide
Experts at research firms have developed a variety of roadmaps defining the future of procurement. 

Gartner, for example, has predicted that by 2022:
Fifty per cent of existing spend analysis and procurement tools will be replaced by AI (artificial intelligence)-driven, cloud-based purchasing platform
Seventy-five per cent of all B2B (business-to-business) one-off spend (i.e., tail spend) will be made in online marketplaces such as Amazon
All best-in-class procure-to-pay services will include built-in chatbots and virtual assistants to further enhance and streamline procurement while improving security and compliance.

How Indian companies/start-ups can leverage from e-procurement to grow their businesses.
The e-procurement system helps an organisation to manage its relationships with its valuable suppliers. It provides a range of built-in management tools to help control costs and ensure maximum supplier performance for those who use it. 

It provides a hassle-free and efficient way to maintain an undisturbed and a constant line of communication with potential suppliers during a business process.

It helps with the decision-making process by keeping relevant information neatly organised and time-stamped. 

Through e-procurement, all transactions are easier to track because they are made over the Internet and managers can instantly see who made what purchases without having to wait for a monthly revolving credit statement to be issued.

E-procurement saves time. Buyers just have to go on the internet and place an order on the portal and the rest is taken care without any hassle. 

Since suppliers receive the order in real-time, the order fulfillment gets much quicker than the traditional methods of procurement.
 
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