While the true Procurement leaders (that pose a subset of the Hackett Group 8%) may be looking ahead to cognitive procurement solutions in the new year, the reality is that the majority of the market is still just looking for insight.
LevaData, one of the few true Cognitive Procurement players (reviewed in this post and in detail in a 3-part Spend Matters Pro series co-authored by the doctor [Part I, Part II, and Part III), recently released the results of its 2017 Cognitive Sourcing Survey that had some scary statistics that included:
- only 13% of procurement managers engage with their suppliers on a constant basis
- RFQ total cycle time for an average organization is 40 days
- only 5% of respondents use third-party, purpose-built solutions for business and market intelligence, with 67% relying on internal solutions and/or Excel spreadsheets! (which is how not to excel at forecasting)
How do you know what you should be paying if you don’t even know what the market is paying? How can you get anything done if a simple request for quote, which only goes out after the specs are complete and the suppliers have an understanding of what you want, takes 7 weeks! (When it shouldn’t even take 7 days!) And, most importantly, how do you have a clue how things are going if you don’t engage with key suppliers regularly?
For the majority of companies, it’s not about cognitive, it’s about entering the modern age. Cognitive would be nice, but right now, they need plain old market intelligence, spend visibility, supplier relationship visibility, and efficient e-Negotiation automation. Without this, they are stuck in the industrial revolution … like their great great grandfathers were 100 years ago!