How can MSMEs Streamline Procurement Through Technology?

Transitioning to the post-pandemic era, the scope of cloud-based technologies in transforming procurement functions is immense. For an organization’s success, especially in the manufacturing sector, the role of agile and robust supply chain models is paramount. From acquiring the best raw materials to sourcing competent suppliers, everything plays a crucial part in enhancing business visibility and control. 

According to a study by Economic Times, “The MSME sector contributes to 33% of India’s GDP and offers employment opportunities to 130 million people across India”. However, compared to large enterprises, MSMEs have faced setbacks in regards to implementing technology advancements to automate and digitize business functions. 

Therefore, for small and midsize enterprises to enhance business scalability and streamline procurement functions, investing in AI-driven digital business solutions is the need of the hour. 

Digital Transformation in Procurement

Procurement is an integral part of a supply chain model that is aimed at effective management of the flow of goods. However, if MSMEs were to resort to traditional procurement models, the result would definitely not be on par with future-ready outcomes. Moreover, relying on paperwork to onboard suppliers or send purchase orders to individual vendors spread across different locations can result in compromised process transparency. 

On the other hand, if enterprises realize the potential of emerging AI-powered technologies, the process is streamlined and most importantly, optimizes an omnichannel experience. In such cases, leaders across different business units can rely on accurate and digitized data, which is analysed in real-time, ensuring a seamless procurement experience. 

Driving Procurement Growth Using Advanced Analytics

Irrespective of the product offering, the primary role for any enterprise looking to transform their procurement functions is effective and accurate analysis of data. For example, by automating end-to-end procurement processes, AI and ML-powered digital tools can help MSMEs predict gaps in independent supply chain processes and forecast trends based on past performance. 

Be it effective categorization of inventories or ensuring business continuity from the perspective of procurement, the utilization of technology can help organizations to: 

Technology Facilitates Sustainable Innovation

In a supply chain model, goods are transferred on a macro-scale. Now, when logistics operations are global in nature, the impact on the environment is bound to be adverse. Also, with a lot of paperwork involved, traditional models can result in inefficient waste management solutions. 

By integrating technology across different business functions in a supply chain, enterprises can explore new avenues that can facilitate digital supplier collaboration channels for cost-effective and sustainable results. Regardless of external factors, state-of-the-art technologies can offer a digital experience, eventually paving the way for innovation through dematerialization of commodities throughout the procurement process.

Mitigating Disruption Through Omnichannel Experiences

Supply chain functions, including procurement requires real-time accessibility of data. In order to build profitable relationships with end-users and suppliers, enterprises must leverage the potential of automation for centralized procurement strategies. Furthermore, MSMEs can operate diverse ERP environments through a single user interface (UI) for an experience that is robust, future-ready and innovation-oriented. 

Fostering Procurement Credibility with Technology

It comes as no surprise that the MSME community in India has undeniably paved the way for diverse employment opportunities. However, in order to emerge through underlying disruptions like the pandemic, the primary goal of the smart enterprise must be to curate procurement strategies that can design a future-proof framework, enabling businesses to thrive in a competitive environment. 

As a trusted technology partner, SAP has been instrumental in offering solutions that have empowered emerging businesses in India to realize the scope of growth and development in procurement and beyond. 

For more on how procurement solutions by SAP are driving digital transformation across MSMEs in India, click here.