The Future Of Procurement, Part 1: What CFOs Need To Know

Marcell Vollmer

Part 1 in a series

Disruptive trends in technology are changing the procurement function as we know it today. Procurement is fast evolving into a more strategic and value-generating function.

The digitization of procurement drives bottom-line impact on the margin. From the finance perspective, two key contributors are significant:

  1. The automation of transactions will increase the productivity of administrative and operational processes, mainly in shared services.
  2. The transition to a strategic procurement function will create increased value for the lines of businesses to grow profitability by aggregating the demand, driving supplier innovations, focusing on compliance and active risk management to ensure a sustainable supply chain.

By way of background: As the former CPO for SAP with the overall responsibility for source-to-pay, I transformed the internal procurement function of a company with approximately US$4 billion spend, 800,000 invoices, and 1 million trips. We introduced a global category management, one end-to-end source-to-pay process, and cloud solutions for goods, services, temp labor, and travel. And as chief operating officer of SAP Ariba, the world’s largest, most global business network and provider of cloud-based applications, I am part of a team that is fundamentally changing the way procurement is done.


Marcell Vollmer

About Marcell Vollmer

Marcell Vollmer is the Chief Digital Officer for SAP Ariba (SAP). He is responsible for helping customers digitalize their supply chain. Prior to this role, Marcell was the Chief Operating Officer for SAP Ariba, enabling the company to setup a startup within the larger SAP business. He was also the Chief Procurement Officer at SAP SE, where he transformed the global procurement organization towards a strategic, end-to-end driven organization, which runs SAP Ariba and SAP Fieldglass solutions, as well as Concur technologies in the cloud. Marcell has more than 20 years of experience in working in international companies, starting with DHL where he delivered multiple supply chain optimization projects.