Category Archives: rants

CoronaVirus Response: Dear Procurement, AI won’t save you!

In the last few years, a number of vendors have been pushing artificial intelligence. Some vendors have even been pushing AI-based suites as the future of sourcing and procurement. And for a time they had a great argument. There are too many low-value, straight-forward, simple and/or tail-spend categories that are not getting appropriately sourced in an average organization that doesn’t have enough people power or hours in a day to properly address all organizational spend in a strategic manner and identify the range of savings and opportunities available to the organization. So why not let technology take over some of this spend, especially where it can’t do any worse than what is being done now?

After all, while there is no true AI, and we won’t have anything close for at least a decade, given the computational power of modern machines, intelligently coded and applied software with advanced analytics, machine learning, and evolving model paradigms can do quite a lot for us, and with respect to some specific tasks where intensive amounts of calculation are required, computer can do it better. Where some insight and intelligence is required, computers can still use advanced analysis and probabilities to get it 95% right 95% of the time and if the right outlier rules are coded, kick it out to a human when it’s likely the computer will get it wrong.

So, given the coronavirus-related chaos going on now, and your inability to deal with the majority of day-to-day tactical tasks and regular category sourcing as you have to constantly deal with new sources of supply interruptions, new challenges of working remote, and, in most industries, declining demands or revenues for the foreseeable, you’re probably thinking now would be the perfect time to invest in AI technologies to get a few workload monkeys off your back as you’re overwhelmed. Something that can take low-value, non-strategic, or commodity category management off your plate sounds like a dream come true.

However, now that you need it the most, I’m sorry to say that now is not the time to try AI. Moreover, adopting AI now would simply result in more catastrophic failures across the organization.

Why? How? Read the doctor‘s unlocked PRO on how AI won’t save you, but rules-based automation might! over on Spend Matters. There’s no miracle cure* for the damage caused by COVID-19, and now would be the worst time to try and adopt what would simply amount to silicon snake oil in these tumultuous times.

* But there was ample opportunity for prevention, and had you listened to the doctor a decade ago when he gave you the answer, you wouldn’t be in this mess right now. But that’s a rant for another day.

Quarantine Days

Sunday, Monday, Quarantine
Tuesday, Wednesday, Quarantine
Thursday, Friday Quarantine
Saturday and Sunday
Another Quarantine Day

These days were ours
But they’re gone now
These days were ours
They’re all gone now

No more sunshine, and no more rain
It’s just LEDs lighting up my brain
Zoom’s my steady, I use my cam
We’re all in hiding and on the lam

No more cruising round the town
Choices are stand up or sit down
My sanity’s come to an end

Quarantine Days are yours and mine (Quarantine Days)
Quarantine Days are yours and mine (Quarantine Days)
Quarantine Days are yours and mine, Quarantine Days

Don’t Eat Bats! Period!

I really shouldn’t have to post this.  I know Chick-fil-A is trying to make the best of a bad situation with its new slogan:


But if we continue to eat ANY bats whatsoever, we’re all gonna die! SARS-COV-3 will wipe us off the planet in an extinction level event! Bats are already carrying it for a reason — while other animals decided to develop smells, spikes, poisons, etc. to kill those who kill it as an evolutionary survival mechanism, bats have gone and taken it one step further and are harboring viruses that will kill us all. And the Chinese have known about this for over 15 years!  So please, don’t eat any bats!

Source: National Post