Expanding on Use Cases for Generative AI for Purchasing Teams

Generative AI (think ChatGPT and Bard) is quickly becoming an essential tool for purchasing professionals. The response to our December 2023 blog article Exploring Generative AI for Procurement – where we summarized the use cases for AI for purchasing teams from eight recent articles – has been extremely positive. This article updates those insights with additional information from articles published in the past two months. 

While there are a lot of articles that describe the possibilities of AI for procurement functions, we’re focusing on practical applications and useful tips for busy purchasing professionals. Below are quick summaries of use cases described in five additional recent articles we can recommend are worth a read. 

Transforming Digital Procurement Through Generative AI (Deloitte, Jan. 2024) 

Offers in-depth current state and future state descriptions for three AI use cases for procurement, as well as current tools for each. 

  • Contract review 
  • Category strategy generation 
  • Guided buying 

How Generative AI Promises to Transform Procurement (Supply Chain Brain, Dec. 2023) 

Suggest four procurement use cases for AI, as well as some general tips for deploying generative AI within purchasing. 

  • Automated document generation and contract management 
  • Supplier evaluation and selection 
  • Customized procurement strategies 
  • Training and knowledge sharing 

Top 3 Use Cases of Generative AI in Procurement (GEP, Jan, 2024) 

Identifies 3 purchasing use cases where AI-based solutions can make a high impact. 

  • Document creation 
  • Decision support 
  • Virtual assistant 

How Supply Chains Benefit from Using Generative AI (EY, Jan. 2024) 

Lists three use cases where AI can assist with sourcing activities, as well as other areas such as planning, manufacturing, and logistics. 

  • Vendor negotiations 
  • Supplier management 
  • Sourcing 
  • Contracts 

The Future of Generative AI Capabilities in S2P Strategies (Supply Chain Magazine, Dec. 2023) 

In addition to providing a detailed flowchart of the use case of RFP response evaluation, this article lists activities related to the following areas for the application of generative AI: 

  • Sourcing 
  • Contracting 
  • Supplier management 
  • Requisition and ordering 
  • Invoicing 
  • Payments 

The articles summarized above have varying degrees of usefulness. Busy purchasing professionals need to know how to use AI, not just what AI might be able to do for them.  

Our previous article Exploring Generative AI for Procurement describes nine use cases for AI with references to multiple articles that detail specific applications.   

  • Sourcing 
  • Supplier management 
  • Spend analysis 
  • Strategy development 
  • Contract management  
  • Negotiations 
  • Operational procurement 
  • Risk management 
  • Communication 

For example, Procurement in the Age of AI – published at MIT Technology Review – discusses the efficiency of generative AI-powered chatbots in procurement. These chatbots can swiftly search through multiple sources to answer complex queries about orders, providing quick and accurate responses to urgent questions. 

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