Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Operations and Supply Chain Management, Vietnam, 2019

ISBN: 9786027060470

Purchasing as a Lever of Innovations in Era of Digital Transformation

Barbara Ocicka
SGH Warsaw School of Economics

Digitalization offers breakthrough possibilities within supply chain management and there is a growing need for implementation of digital technologies in various business processes. The use of digital technologies in purchasing is in the early stages of its development. However, purchasing is evolving towards a strategic leadership function in delivering value in supply chains. The importance of purchasing function is especially emphasized in development of innovations both in internal (with other business functions) and external cooperation with suppliers. Main purpose of the paper is to explore the role of purchasing function as a lever of innovation development and to define significance of emerging digital technologies within this process. To research the phenomenon empirically, two surveys and three in-depth case studies were conducted in 2016-2019. It has been confirmed that suppliers are the most important partners in producers’ supply chains in development of innovations, regardless of their type. This trend emphasizes the importance of purchasing within supply chain management. In addition, purchasing function is increasingly involved in cross-functional innovation development projects in companies and is beginning to play a leading role in them. Best practices of chosen companies indicate that emerging digital technologies become more and more important catalyst of internal and external collaboration on innovation development, with proactive participation of purchasing function. Furthermore, digital technologies transform the role of purchasing in innovation development process. This function not only buys innovations as before, but significantly increases focal company innovativeness by collaborating with internal customers and external suppliers. Moreover, digital technologies drive both internal customers and suppliers to take the initiative and offer innovative ideas. Research results enrich the purchasing literature and business practice, emphasizing huge potential for using purchasing function as a lever of innovations in era of digital transformation.

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    author = {Ocicka, Barbara},
    title = {Purchasing as a Lever of Innovations in Era of Digital Transformation},
    booktitle = {Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Operations and Supply Chain Management, Vietnam, 2019},
    year = {2019},
    doi = {NaN}

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