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The SmartCube’s New Year wishes for the procurement solutions and services marketplace 2022

12/29/2021 By

Continuing our series of New Year wishes (rather than ‘predictions’) for the procurement, supply and services market for the year ahead (read more about it here), which runs from mid-December to early January, today let’s hear today from Omer Abdullah, co-Founder and Managing Director of  The Smart Cube,business preformance intelligence provider and a Spend Matters 50ToKnow.

Wishes come from expert tech and service providers in the market; at the end of our series our analyst Bertrand Maltaverne will wrap up with his own take on the key themes that emerge. Wishes are published in no other order than when they are received through our digital letterbox.

If you are looking for procurement technology to help with your wishes for 2022, try out Spend Matters TechMatch℠ to benchmark and shortlist providers 

My three wishes 2022:

1. Continued march to being a trusted advisor

If there is any positive that came out of the pandemic, it was the heightened awareness of the impact of progressive procurement and the impact that the function has had on maintaining supply chain continuity and driving better cost management and product availability. My wish for 2022 is that we continue to see the development of the function in this light, as a leader who deserves a seat at the table because not only of their reach and influence but for their ability to tangibly impact a host of corporate variables from cost, of course, but also through to product performance, innovation, sustainability and so much more. Practitioners can own this by becoming even more “insight-led” focusing on intelligence and analytics to drive their understanding of the business overall, their category’s role in the business, as well as the alternative ways/scenarios through which better, more holistic procurement advice can impact the product/service being delivered, and hence the value the end customer receives and ultimately, shareholder value.

2. Thoughtful investment in the function

Over the last decade or so, there has been a steady drumbeat (recognition) of the value that investment in procurement has yielded to the enterprise. This has ranged from better and more talented people, to new and improved technologies, to more progressive tools and training, that yield higher procurement performance and hence greater impact But this expansion of investment has been uneven and many organizations, including those in the Fortune 500/FTSE 100, still aren’t recognizing (tangibly) the impact the function can deliver (beyond just savings via “three bids and a buy”) by demonstrating material investment in the CPO and his/her teams. Note that I am using the term investment broadly, from the financial resources (needed to hire more and better people, to acquiring the tools and technologies necessary for the function’s success) to the leadership commitment (to recognize the CPO deserves a seat at the C-level table and be part of the Executive conversation) to organizational communication and support (that is, the practical demonstration and communication of the value, potential and impact of the function across the entire organization).

3. More predictability

2020 and 2021 have been, to say the least, unpredictable years. Procurement, along with the rest of the organization, has had to learn to react and pivot to a host of events, from the pandemic to supply chain bottlenecks to allocation issues to price fluctuations to inflation and more. If there is a wish for 2022, it would be for greater predictability: better visibility on supply issues, improved supplier health, more predictable supply chains, clearly manageable (and forecastable) risk issues. Note that the implication here is not that Procurement should sit back and wait for the above to happen. There will certainly always be aspects of luck/variance we will have to react to, but practitioners can and should take charge and drive more of the above through their own actions. Focus on closer supplier risk management, better understanding of market movements and developments, emphasis on inflation modeling and commodity price forecasting and mitigation are, among others, tools that are readily at the procurement leader’s disposal to drive greater predictability in day-to-day operations.


Thanks to The SmartCube, and look out for more solution and services provider wishes/predictions over the next few weeks, with an overall take on the series from our analysts at the end. See more vendor predictions and wishes here with our analyst commentary from last year.

And if you are looking for procurement services providers to help you with your 2022 decisions, look no further than our Procurement Services Market Landscape Directory.