Digitization Opens the Door for Big Data in Procurement

According to the EIU report, “What’s now and next for finance and procurement?” digitisation is one of the top three trends predicted to impact procurement and finance the most over the next years. And as digitisation increases, so does the amount of data collected through digitised systems and solutions. Learn more about how procurement can get the most from digitisation by taking advantage of big data.


Digitisation a top trend for procurement and finance

In EIU’s report “What’s now and next for finance and procurement?” research revealed that digitisation is one of the top trends predicted to affect procurement and finance operations the most over the upcoming years. Over the past decade, digital transformation has become a key element in organisations’ business plans. Why? Because more and more, digital technologies are being integrating into all steps of the procure-to-pay (P2P) process.

As more companies adopt digital cultures and technologies, finance and procurement executives are optimistic that they’re prepared to face the challenge. The EIU survey report reveals that 61% of respondents believe their finance and procurement functions are prepared for the impacts of digitisation within the next 18 months.

According to the EIU report, when respondents were asked to identify the dimensions of digitisation that will have the greatest impact on their organisation, 21% answered “digital transformation of internal operations across the organisation,” the most common answer. This was followed shortly by 20% answering with “digitisation of procurement processes.”

Rainer Krug, head of global finance and procurement for KWS, was one of the professionals surveyed for the report. To him, digitisation’s potential in procurement is its ability to provide spend visibility across KWS. He says, “We need big data in procurement. Technology will help us in procurement [by] giving us a baseline for negotiation.”

Big data in procurement

In “What’s now and next for finance and procurement?” 42% of respondents agree that the biggest impact from digitisation will be a greater need for technology investment. And as companies begin to invest in technology, one thing becomes clear. They start to process and gather a lot of data—what’s referred to as “big data.”​

Procurement generates and stores massive amounts of data, and many times that data is spread across many disparate systems making it difficult to organise. But procurement can take control of that data and use it to gain insights to better enable the benefits of hindsight and foresight. This data is essential to procurement teams. Without it, they lack what’s required to track spend, monitor and manage supplier and vendor relationships, and increase visibility to manage cost savings and risk.

Using an automated, electronic procurement (e-procurement) solution is the best way to standardise processes and centralise all your data. When all procurement data is consolidated, you’ll be in the best position possible to drive value across your organisation. Here’s what you can gain:

  • Larger, more complete datasets for deeper analyses

  • Forecasted savings and decreased costs

  • Better quality and better-priced goods and services

  • Predictive and advanced analytics

  • Better managed contracts and decreased risks

Better managed risk backed by big data

Big data analytics can help simplify and secure the management of procurement contracts. Big data provides you with both historical and real-time data, meaning your team has the insight needed to actively monitor suppliers. You can also use data analytics to vet your suppliers and ensure you’re doing business with those who support and act as an active extension of your brand’s beliefs, values, and ethical standards.

Basware enriches supplier information against Dun & Bradstreet. This means that organisations in the Basware Network can easily monitor and update their supplier data quality, thus eliminating duplicates and updates reports. It also adds essential information so that businesses can enjoy a great efficiency and save time and money while building relationships with their suppliers.

Become proactive with predictive analysis

In the past, analytics were used reactively, meaning they only helped you analyse in a historical view. But because big data offers both historical and real-time information, you can upgrade your procurement analysis to be proactive and predictive. The more you use an automated and digitised solution such as an e-procurement software, the more data you gather.

Basware e-Procurement seamlessly integrates with our Analytics tool, providing procurement departments with real-time insights to better track on-contract and maverick spend across the entire organisation. You can even locate opportunities where approval times could be accelerated.

Keep reading

Ready to learn more about the upcoming trends in procurement and finance? Read more in the EIU report, “What’s now and next for finance and procurement?”

VP of Purchase to Pay Product Management, Basware Sami Peltonen, is VP of P2P Product Management. Sami boasts more than two decades developing and delivering solutions that streamline procurement and finance professionals’ daily lives, enabling them to achieve greater efficiencies within their organisations. Sami currently leads Basware’s P2P Roadmap and Product strategy.