Procurement’s digital transformation goes further with SAP Ariba!
SAP Ariba is not a simple product at all! Dealing with one of the most important business processes, i.e. procurement, SAP Ariba has developed into a complex platform managing multiple sub-processes and stakeholders along with its inclusion in the SAP portfolio.
The digitization of procurement and the improvement of the entire process remain central, with the main target of the company being to provide value and purpose for its clients. In this respect, the role of the partners is crucial: either they are services/ implementation partners or they develop functional or vertical add-ons.
SAP Ariba's six global strategic partners (IBM, Accenture, Deloitte, E&Y, PWC and Bearing Point) joined the event, demonstrating their capabilities. IBM has the most comprehensive position in SAP Ariba’s ecosystem. Its activities comprise consulting and systems integration and technology enhancements on the basis of the vendor’s Watson capabilities. IBM has added a cognitive layer to the SAP Ariba solutions. IBM is one of the largest SAP Ariba customers, but equally a seller within the network. Other services partners come from the consulting area. They offer broad support for customers to make them understand how procurement processes can be digitized.
From the technology perspective, SAP Ariba has not announced completely new solutions or functionalities, but it restated its strong commitment to the journey set in the last couple of years towards an end-to-end procurement platform, providing an enhanced user experience, automated and AI-enabled processes.
The company has announced a comprehensive roadmap for the next year, including numerous releases of features and functionalities of its modules and solutions. Those releases are mapped to its strategic objectives:
- persona-based user experience,
- deeper supplier engagement,
- data-driven smart decisions.
Procurement is one of the most important, extensive business processes encountered in a company, irrespective of size or industry; at the same time, it lags behind in terms of automation and transformation. This provides a huge opportunity for growth for both SAP Ariba and its partners in the upcoming years. The development and the increased sophistication of the network represents the foremost asset of SAP Ariba, namely the creation of an ecosystem where demand and supply meet, benefiting from augmented data usage, risk management and industry best practices.