10 May 2001
Purchasing is the likeliest business process to have been web-enabled by companies, according to a new study.
The survey of 50 businesses' e-supply chain strategies, backed by the Management Consultancies Association, found that 44 per cent said they used the web for procurement and 80 per cent said they will, making it one of the fastest-growing processes for web-enablement.
The main benefit of sourcing on the web, cited by 76 per cent of respondents, was improved supplier relationships. It also enabled them to deliver products more quickly.
Savings are a less immediate concern, suggested Pat Sweet, the report's research analyst. "Improving customer service and enhancing external relationships are stronger reasons for companies to use the web."
The findings were published in the Consultants' Advisory bulletin, which also said that supply chains are changing rapidly. Nearly 70 per cent said their chains had become more flexible in recent years and 26 per cent had re-engineered them within the past six months.
Three-quarters of those questioned use, or plan to use, business-to-business marketplaces. * More information on Consultants' Advisory is available at www.consultants-advisory.com.