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Maritime e-procurement scores ‘two out of ten’ in new research

Executives surveyed for a new research whitepaper by maritime e-procurement platform ShipServ have rated electronic purchasing in the industry at “two out of ten” in terms of its evolution to date, though one third of respondents believe the market will change beyond all recognition in the next five years, driven by developments in advanced technology and applications.

{mprestriction ids="1,2"}The ‘e-procurement in Maritime; 2021 and Beyond’ whitepaper analyses the current and future state of e-procurement within the maritime industry, based on a survey of chief purchasing officers and managers (CPOs/CPMs). 50 per cent of the CPOs and CPMs surveyed stated that they still use their e-procurement systems for purely transactional – and not strategic – purposes.

Reasons cited for this lack of strategic application include the significant fragmentation of the market, with suppliers and buyers using different systems which are not integrated and cannot interact with each other, and the labour intensive nature of many current systems.

Despite this, 70 per cent of those surveyed stated that they realised more than 20 per cent in time savings from their e-procurement system, and reported benefits in transparency and the ability to track historical data.

Some of the core areas of future technology development highlighted in the whitepaper include a move from ERP-based systems to Cloud computing with application-based interfaces and centralised analytics, allowing purchasing departments to share data directly with their supply chain.

Blockchain was also predicted to be embedded into future systems, to facilitate distribution of data to members within an agreed network, alongside additional Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning tools.

“While maritime e-procurement is at its early stage of evolution, our whitepaper clearly shows that the ideals for enhanced digitalisation, which will drive a more advanced and strategic model for e-procurement, are in easy reach,” said Kim Skaarup, CEO, ShipServ.

“Speaking to procurement professionals, they know the opportunities that are out there and can see that they are close to unlocking the door to a universe of untapped savings, efficiency and value, which will redefine the nature of their jobs from largely administration to strategy, as well as transforming the whole supply chain. Critically, this will further drive e-procurement’s fundamental role in the ecosystem for vessel optimisation.”{/mprestriction}

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