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Interview with Malcolm Harrison, CIPS New CEO (Part 3 — Will artificial intelligence wipe out procurement?)

12/03/2018 By and

CIPS’ leader Malcolm Harrison says the professional organization is concerned for the future of procurement workers as “more work is ‘outsourced’ to technology.”

Harrison, speaking in an interview with Spend Matters UK’s veteran procurement expert Peter Smith, was asked if artificial intelligence (AI) will wipe out procurement.

“My view is there will always be events that happen that haven’t happened before — we will still need people to make those judgements based on new facts and situations,” Harrison says. “But one of my concerns is this: How do we ensure we develop judgement skills in the profession?”

The Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply offers accredited degrees and programs for procurement professionals to learn and grow, so it’s interested in moving the industry forward.

In part 1 of our interview with the institute’s relatively new CEO, we looked at a number of issues, including its commercial focus. In part 2, it was largely issues around restructuring CIPS leadership for growth beyond its base in the UK to serve procurement workers in the U.S. and globally. So, in this final part, we picked up on Harrison’s thoughts around the future of procurement and the role of CIPS within that. Read the full version of Spend Matter UK’s part 3 here.