PwC's 2022 Digital Procurement Survey

4th edition

About the survey

More than 800 procurement and supply professionals in 64 countries across 17 industries participated in PwC’s most recent survey on the digital transformation of procurement. In this study, we discover the current and future state of procurement digitalisation, including key investment areas, digital roadmaps, key success factors for transformation, best practices, and much more.

Competing forces are reshaping procurement

Supply of goods and services has become increasingly challenging over the past few years, making the business of procurement increasingly tough — with a variety of competing forces at play. Global supply shortages. Price increases. Inflation. Health crises. Clearly, the list of challenges is long, but so too is the list of opportunities to earn trust and create value. 

With innovative mindsets and the right technologies, procurement professionals are driving toward delivering transformation with the right business outcomes. Chief procurement officers (CPOs) continue to demonstrate a sense of purpose, focusing their roadmap on source-to-pay digitalisation as well as a shift to sustainable development with innovative use cases of ESG and supply chain traceability. While the majority of people we surveyed reported cost reduction and risk management as their top strategic priorities for 2025, many are also continuing to prioritise digital transformation in new ways, focusing on the organisational and human aspects as well as process efficiency. Looking ahead, there’s a lot to be optimistic about: The future of procurement is bright and digital.

Competing forces are shaping procurement

Survey highlights

77% of companies are equipped with source-to-pay digital solutions. This suggests that the digitalisation of processes is no longer a nice-to-have, but now a necessity. Looking ahead, procurement departments set very ambitious digitalisation objectives for 2025, with an average target of 72% of digitalization. Middle market companies, which are usually less digitalised, plan to strongly increase their investments in procurement digital transformation, while large and very large companies will maintain their budgets.

For the majority of CPOs, cost reduction and strategic sourcing remain their top priorities, followed by digital transformation. As hybrid models of work continue, so too will the need for ongoing digitalisation. Our study showed that more than 80% of companies with a high level of process digitalisation succeed with value creation thanks to data availability, but 55% of companies still struggle leveraging their data.

More than a third of procurement departments plan to invest in a solution to assess the carbon footprint of their suppliers by 2025. According to our survey, more CPOs  are focusing their roadmap on source-to-pay digitalisation as well as on innovative use cases of ESG and supply chain traceability. Looking ahead, the tracking of suppliers’ CO2 emissions is expected to be a game-changer for procurement departments, with 27% of companies already using or experimenting with it. Purchasing also has a key role to play in the energy transition, which can be facilitated and accelerated by appropriate digital solutions.

90% of procurement departments reported being concerned by cyber security and 27% having already experienced an intrusion. This is likely caused by the increasing digitalisation and ongoing ambitions for the future. In terms of emerging tech, however, like blockchain, the jury is still out. The applicability of blockchain in procurement processes still needs to be clarified for 59% of procurement departments.

Tips for future transformation projects

Focus on organisational and human aspects

Putting people first matters. As we’ve all seen, the importance of cooperation continues to rise in hybrid work models, making organisational and human aspects critical to success in any digital transformation project. In our survey, more than 57% of procurement professionals reported “involvement of stakeholders” as the most important success factor for digital transformation.

Enable efficient processes and practices

Again, taking a human-led, tech-enabled perspective is the way to go, so be sure to consider any new processes from your users’ perspective, while relying on best practices, in order to successfully and sustainably implement change. More than 50% of respondents identified process optimization and efficiency as critical to digital transformation. 

Carefully consider your vendor and integrator selection

Technical aspects, such as the integrator or the chosen solution, are also important, though they are often seen as secondary success factors. But the focus on the previous two factors, namely process reengineering and stakeholder buy-in, instead of solution features and capabilities, also reveals that CPOs expect solutions to be implemented well from a technical perspective.

The emergence of these new risks has changed the perception of digital transformation by procurement departments. While digitalisation continues to progress among companies in all sectors, it is now becoming a necessity to overcome the challenges of cost control, supply chain traceability, and supplier relation securitisation.

Isabelle Carradine and Dr. Norbert Fischer

Contact us

Harald Dutzler

Partner, Strategy& Austria

İsmail Karakış

İsmail Karakış

Advisory Services Partner, PwC Turkey

Tel: +90 212 326 5365

Frédéric Chapelle

Technology Partner, PwC Luxembourg

Tel: +352 49 48 48 4185

Mikael Nadelmann

Mikael Nadelmann

Director, PwC Sweden

Tel: +46 723 53 03 35

Patrick Marter

Patrick Marter

UK Procurement Practice Leader, PwC United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)7710 611619

Athanasios Spanos

Athanasios Spanos

Partner, Advisory , PwC Greece

Tel: +30 21 0811 4392

Mikko Reinikainen

Mikko Reinikainen

Director, PwC Finland

Tel: +358 (0)20 787 7463

Selim Hoff-Sümer

Selim Hoff-Sümer

Director, PwC Norway

Tel: +47 952 60 326

Mark McKeever

Director, PwC Ireland (Republic of)

Jiří Jakoubek

Jiří Jakoubek

Senior Manager, PwC Czech Republic

Tel: +420 604 581 898

Marc Philipp

Marc Philipp

Partner, PwC Singapore

Tel: +65 8223 1503

Justin Meade

Justin Meade

Director, PwC Australia

Tel: +61 422 975 042

Pirata Phakdeesattayaphong

Partner, PwC Thailand

Tel: +66 (0) 2844 1000

Edmund Lee

Edmund Lee

Partner, PwC China

Tel: +[852] 2289 2714

Alex Murage

Alex Murage

Associate Director, PwC Kenya

Tel: +254 (20) 285 5000

Retief Ferreira

Retief Ferreira

Associate Director, PwC South Africa

Tel: + 27 (0) 11 287 0347

Emovwerha Nwaefuna

Emovwerha Nwaefuna

Senior Manager, PwC Nigeria

Tel: +234 (1) 271 1700

Dr. Bashar El-Jawhari

Dr. Bashar El-Jawhari

Partner and Leader of Industry 4.0, Procurement and Supply Chain, PwC Middle East

Meghan   Murray

Meghan Murray

Sourcing & Procurement Leader, PwC United States

Jamie Siu

Partner, PwC Canada

Tel: +1 403 509 6672

Slaven Curic

Director, PwC Croatia

Manuel Diaz Delgado

Manuel Diaz Delgado

Partner, PwC Spain

Lorenzo Paolo Brunello

Director, PwC Italy

Peter Feyen

Senior Manager, PwC Belgium

Xander de Jong

Xander de Jong

Senior Manager, PwC Netherlands

Tel: +31 (0)63 927 78 20

Ho-Seung Shin

Partner, PwC South Korea

Avinash Agarwal

Associate Director, PwC India

Takeshi Noda

Takeshi Noda

Partner, PwC Japan

Oscar Prada

Oscar Prada

Partner, PwC Colombia

Tel: (571) 634 0555 Ext. 10392

Dr. Jan Joachim Herrmann

Dr. Jan Joachim Herrmann

Partner, PwC Germany

Tel: +49 211 981-5890

Robert Weissbarth

Director, Strategy&, PwC Germany

Tel: +49 211 / 3890-134

Marc Rajal

Marc Rajal

Director, Advisory Supply Chain & Operations, PwC Switzerland

Tel: +41 58 792 43 25

Rodrigo Damiano

Rodrigo Damiano

Partner, PwC Brasil

Tel: +55 (11) 96397 0864

Damián Vázquez

Damián Vázquez

Partner, PwC Argentina

Tel: (54 11) 4850-6814

Assia Benhida

Assia Benhida

Partner, Market & ESG Leader Maghreb, PwC France et Maghreb

Tel: +212 6 61 42 42 02

José Luis  Los Santos

José Luis Los Santos

Partner, Strategy&, PwC México

Isabelle Carradine Pinto

Isabelle Carradine Pinto

Partner, PwC France et Maghreb

Tel: +33 (0)1 56 57 88 96

Dr. Norbert F. Fischer

Dr. Norbert F. Fischer

Global Lead of the PwC Procurement Consulting Practice, Partner, PwC Germany

Tel: +49 69 9585-3898

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