Digital Procurement Transformation in South Africa ​

In the 21st century digital procurement systems are essential for commercial aviation and other industries but still, there may be insufficiency in resources for the implementation of digital procurement. in addition, some digital systems are too complex for specialists and it takes time to master them.

First of all, the impact of COVID-19 on aviation was really strong and supply chains were affected significantly. Thus, the issue of interconnectivity between organizations and industries became extremely important and digital solutions were developed for better resilience of supply chains.

Aviation shall operate around the clock all year round without delay and it brings people, businesses, technologies, suppliers and manufacturers together. without proper operation on any step of the supply chain, the whole process will be ruined and malfunctions will cause delays, lack of components, weak logistics and other problems unacceptable for the industry.

For example, airport systems satisfy infrastructure needs and use external resources like cleaning and catering, digital procurement helps to optimize costs and pick most suitable and quick options. Quite the same works for the companies delivering aviation components, parts and carrying out component repair and exchange. Properly built procurement systems and processes can boost performance of a company and contribute to its competitiveness as well as it builds good partnerships with providers and suppliers around the globe.

Many countries and regions are experiencing transformation of procurement process and procurement systems. For example, an e-tender publication portal and a centralized supplier database was introduced in South Africa by the National Treasury in 2015 and this led to the first major modernization of public procurement from a manual paper-based system to an electronic system. This platform interconnects all government departments and it is used for the purchase of government-negotiated contracts. Initially this system was launched for numerous purposes like efficiency improving and again it does work for commercial companies as well. Digital procurement significantly contributes to the reduction of paperflow.

According to the reports from the times before digital procurement systems were just being launched, there have been money losses due to inefficient document management. After that aviation companies from South Africa and other regions  moved forward to digital technologies to deliver better customer experience and at protect its systems and data at the same time.

As for Safire, we also focus on the protection of personal data and systems and we strive to deliver exceptional customer experience and speed of our operation as there’s no room for delay in aviation. Besides, we monitor our performance with the help of digital procurement systems and we always know where to go and what to improve or modify according to the needs of our customers.

South African aviation companies are going digital and a fully integrated procurement system is being developed to help different companies to have access to the full history and enjoy the transparency of current and completed processes. In addition, adoption of technologies will help add value with both internal and external stakeholders and reach better connection with other companies in the region and abroad.

Of course, not all procurement systems are efficient and each company has to find the most suitable one depending on the location of the company, it’s specifics and business tasks including procurement itself, conclusion of contracts and payment.

Today such digital technologies as AI, IoT, Cognitive Computing and predictive analysis are used in aviation industry of South Africa as digital procurement helps to transfer big data analysis into procurement and lower costs. For sure, most South African companies choose most efficient and easy to use solutions, but all these systems and solutions are connected with each other and Safire can access this system to help companies choose the best option and operate as an extension to its procurement team. This kind of assistance may be relevant for different regions as somewhere some processes are carried out manually and it may take time to teach a professional to handle and control such systems. Moreover, somewhere outdated procurement systems are still being used and it may take time to transfer to digital procurement systems.  Safire has large experience managing different digital procurement systems and the company can be a time-saving solution with human errors reduced to zero and extremely strong data protection. As is known, cloud-based technologies shall be protected from data leakage and system failures, and, of course these critical issues are managed by IT-professionals.

In conclusion it is important to say that digital procurement is an integral part of aviation industry and no sufficient customer service or competitiveness may be reached by the company without it. But, for sure there are both advantages and barriers for this transformation and it does take time for implementation and development but it will anyway result in better performance and competitiveness.