Recently, Supply Chain Insights hosted a panel of procurement experts for a discussion around transitioning to an AI-enabled procurement process. Lora Cecere (Supply Chain Insights – Founder), Jasmine Castro (Global Sourcing – Poly), Carol Deninger (Supply Chain Solutions – Bose), and LevaData covered a lot of interesting ground. Some of the topics under discussion were the future of procurement, the impetus for industry change, their transition to LevaData’s cognitive computing platform, where they are in the transition process, some of the benefits they’ve realized, and the challenges encountered along the way. You’ll find some of what was discussed and a link to the full conversation below.

The Big Picture

The host, Lora, frames the discussion,

“You know cognitive computing is very interesting to a lot of people, so what we're going to do today is, we're going to set the stage of, “What is artificial intelligence?” “What is cognitive?” “What is the digital supply chain?”

“The mistake I see many companies making is looking at digitization versus digital transformation. I define the digital transformation as stepping back and thinking about how do we transform […]  think differently and drive different outcomes? […] I want you to step back and I want you to think about what they could be.”

Which is to say, cognitive computing and digital procurement aren’t just means to cost savings or risk reduction, but represent something formative that will have a lasting impact on how procurement as a function evolves over the next 5 to 10 years.

Practical Concerns Driving the Change

“What it came down to is, how can we continue to do better? Not just to maintain what we had been doing, but how can we have further reach into some of the commodities that even when we had a full, larger team we never really had the time to go after.”

The conversation quickly moved on to practical concerns. Jasmine explains what pushed her organization to consider a cognitive computing solution. She explained that, while her company continued to grow, her team had been shrinking. Even under these pressures,

Carol faced different challenges. Her organization had changed manufacturing strategies and sold off two large manufacturing facilities to a supply chain partner. 80% of their manufacturing was now being done by external partners.

“That really brought a challenge for us because we suddenly lost visibility to all of our spend. The tier two spend disappeared.”

Both Jasmine and Carol’s organization adopted LevaData, to manage their challenges.

Change is Coming

LevaData closed by outlining their vision for what’s coming in the near future for cognitive computing.

“We're at an early stage of adoption, but what we're seeing from our perspective is that this is happening, will happen very quickly. There's going to be a significant, true competitive advantage for early adopters in this area to really scale and adopt these capabilities because the underlying innovation has just not really kept up.

Hopefully this has piqued your interest. Get the full conversation here.