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On November 8, the SAP Ariba Partner Ecosystem team hosted 50 thought leaders, analysts, and innovative CPOs, including 12 SAP and SAP Ariba executives in the SAP Leonardo Center in NYC.

The inaugural Digital Procurement and Supply Chain Networks Think Tank Summit is a catalyst in forming a Thought Leadership Community where we will:

  • Connect strategists and technologists to conceptualize next-generation procurement and supply chain networks

  • Discover new paths to bridge the gap to the digital future

  • Gain a more defined vision that adds value to our professional discipline

We delivered a one-day leadership workshop where we represented the thought leader’s journey to the digital future through the following four stages:

  1. Imagine the future by listening to four inspiring business leaders and four blockchain and machine learning technologists

  2. Connect brilliant minds by mixing advisors, influencers, analysts, customers and SAP and SAP Ariba Executives

  3. Discover the art of possibility via disruptive technologies in the Think Tank Lab showcasing dynamic and thought-provoking demos

  4. Act on our imagination and inspiration by identifying top challenges and ideating solutions in a Design Thinking approach

Design Thinking Think Tank

To apply innovative solutions to real, current business problems by utilizing the participants’ perspectives and ideas, while maximizing everyone's engagement and interaction level, we arranged the leaders into 7 groups and applied Design Thinking tools for the group discussions.  During the workshop, the leaders identified the top challenges in procurement and supply chain and narrowed down to 1 focus area.  Each team then developed a design statement for focused ideation.  This was further refined to 1 idea using creative brainstorming techniques.

Here are the design statements the 7 groups created to bridge the gap between the current and the future.

  1. How might we get the right data, well interpreted to make more accurate decisions?

  2. How might we position procurement as a strategic function?

  3. How might we supercharge the procurement data to change the world?

  4. How might we help Procurement to re-imagine the future?

  5. How might we improve the quality and availability of data?

  6. How might we inspire trust by providing relevant track and trace data or the need for it?

  7. How might we prompt the adoption of new ways of making procurement awesome by focusing on people and behavior?

We plan to publish a series of blog on each group discussion  Please come back and check out the subsequent blogs on each challenge area and potential solution ideas in depth to learn more about what’s on top of procurement Thought leaders’ minds!

Here are the other blogs in the series so far: