Digital adoption: The secret to successful procurement

When the Covid-19 crisis struck, procurement teams everywhere were brought into the spotlight, not as cost-cutting entities but as one of the most strategic processes in the business. It was the perfect catalyst for industry-wide transformation, at record speed.

Overnight procurement leaders facilitated remote working, invested in new tools, and even trained users and suppliers at a distance. But the chances are, you weren’t equipped for transformation or even ready for the journey.

Today, is digital transformation enough for successful procurement? Does it foolproof your processes? And does it prove the added value of purchasing solutions?

We’re going to discuss the secret to providing and proving successful digital procurement – digital adoption.

The new world of digital procurement

Advancements in technology have brought supply chains into the future. Strategic sourcing is more predictive, transactional procurement more automated, and supplier management more proactive.

(Source: Deloitte)

Digital procurement solutions today offer previously unavailable data, bringing order to mammoth (but unstructured) data sets, driving more complex analysis and better supplier strategies, enabling more efficient operations overall. But new solutions and new data are meaningless without the right training to use them.

The argument for digital procurement is undisputable. While you’ve made significant progress – streamlining activities, automating labor-intensive tasks, boosting efficiency, reducing costs, improving the supply chain, and much, much more, investing in new tools is only half the journey.

Can you prove the added value of your solutions? Are you able to provide quantitative and qualitative ROI? You’re not alone!

Definitive ROI in digital procurement is tricky to measure since a lot of its value comes from complex and hard-to-measure factors including user satisfaction, process efficiency, risk management, and the quality of suppliers you select. You can identify ‘successful’ procurement in many ways, but the bottom line is ROI and added value you can prove.

The consequences of poor procurement

Misused or unused purchasing software can result in a calculated loss of 15m€/year

(Source: Lemon Learning, client survey)

A client in the energy sector experienced long-term, mass misuse of their procurement software due to challenges related to onboarding and training.

With the Lemon Learning digital adoption platform,  our client increased engagement on a significant proportion of their users, thanks to training delivered directly inside their procurement software. Yes, you read correctly, complete, interactive, independent training without ever leaving their tools.

This is just one example of the fairly catastrophic impacts on a business when widespread procurement processes fail. Traditional, time-consuming processes, along with methods of training and implementation, are no longer enough to meet today’s evolving procurement landscape. So back away from your Excel sheet and discover digital adoption.

Drive digital procurement with digital adoption

Cloud-based, SaaS, or self-hosted? Whether it’s Coupa, SAP Ariba, Ivalua, Oracle, Sage, Infor, Synertrade, Servicenow, Workday, or any other procurement system, a digital adoption platform offers step-by-step guidance, from the moment users enter their tools. Just a few things you can expect:

  • Improved performance on any procurement solution
  • Standardized and customizable procurement training
  • Qualitative and quantitative analytics to prove ROI

Your purchasing department and suppliers need to achieve the state of digital adoption on all of their procurement solutions. Software adoption directly impacts the quality of each procurement process and your overall business performance. But what does that mean in concrete terms.

Improve training and onboarding with a digital adoption platform

Traditional methods of training are fast becoming incompatible with today’s working structure. Digital transformation, and especially digital procurement, require more innovative solutions for a few reasons we’ll discuss.

From product selection to availability, to sending purchase orders to vendors, all of these previously time-consuming tasks have been replaced with streamlined digital processes that require equally digital training. So why revert to PDFs, procurement manuals, and pen-to-paper training?

🍋 Boost employee engagement with the ‘Learning by doing’ methodology 

With a digital adoption platform and our ‘Learning by doing’ methodology, your users onboard, train, and work at exactly the same time. Also referred to as ‘active learning’, it facilitates users to engage in the learning process and generate their knowledge, step-by-step. 

In conjunction with learning by doing, a digital adoption platform also uses a microlearning approach:

  • Training transformed into bite-size micro objectives
  • Training modules ranging from 30 seconds to 3 minutes
  • Short, frequent bursts of information, activated by the user
  • Simple and targeted information

Procurement training challenges

  1. Procurement and Purchasing solutions aren’t required day-to-day. This can influence bad internal practices and the incorrect use of tools. With a digital adoption platform, you can create and distribute training workflows (of interactive guides) for each procurement process. It means foolproof training each time users carry out a task. And the best part? Complete autonomy with 24/7 access to guides.
  2. Are your users losing time and productivity jumping in and out of platforms? A study by Pegasystems Inc, found employees switching between apps more than 1,100 times a day, negatively impacting levels of productivity. Since a digital adoption platform integrates with your existing software like a second skin, it’s all your users need to work and train simultaneously. That means fewer distractions and fewer digital frustrations.
  3. Employee resistance to change affects businesses across every industry. Digital transformation is a time of uncertainty, new training, and unfamiliar processes. It’s important to remember the human element of communication throughout the process. With a digital adoption platform, you can stay in touch with your users at the touch of a button, with features including in-app messaging, and push notifications (targeted popups).
  4. Are you supporting your users through change? Part of implementing any new software is change management before, during, and after deployment. It means user support identifying their shortfalls, dysfunctions, new training, consistent communication, and fostering a company culture around change. The goal is to prepare them for anything. 

🍋 Lemon Learning analytics: helping you prove the added value of your procurement solutions

It’s official, you’re armed with the secret to successful procurement – digital adoption! With Lemon Learning analytics, prove the added value of your procurement solutions with real-time, in-depth, quantitative, and qualitative analytics on user performance. Leverage analytics for better ROI and your next digital procurement investments:

  • Monitor several projects at once
  • Intuitive dashboard overview
  • Library of interactive guides
  • Push notifications (push templates available)
  • Tooltips 
  • Surveys

Are you interested in learning more about the value of Digital Adoption? Take a look at our case studies page. Or get in touch for more help to improve your user experience!

Sarah C

Sarah oversees all things inbound marketing, exploring the many business uses and topics surrounding digital adoption. Her previous experiences include B2C and product marketing in the social listening space, uncovering emerging industry trends.