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Thu, Dec 14, 2017

A New Era in Procurement and Supply

As we grapple with the consequences of poor economic conditions, many of us must be pondering what the future holds for us. What will keep our organisations from faltering in the face of the economic onslaught? How can the procurement and supply function contribute to the economic sustainability of the organisation?

All organisations need people with the right skills and management qualities to bring it to the next level. They need people with the capabilities to deal with the on-going requirements to improve productivity and reduce total costs of doing business. Procurement and Supply accounts for almost 40% of an organisation’s total costs. This makes it imperative that organisations target these costs to meet their organisation’s business objectives. Having the people with the right competencies in procurement and supply becomes vital to an organisation’s survival and growth.

The Centre for Procurement Leadership, UK has identified the following changes within the field of procurement and supply management that is likely to impact procurement function.

  • Global competition and ever changing technological innovation are rapidly re-shaping markets, products and operations.
  • Purchasing and supply management is becoming increasingly integrated within the business strategy.
  • There is a broadening and deepening of procurement’s role within the organization
  • The changing procurement and supply environment will present challenges to the organisation and thus impact their ability to maximise the available resources.

Are Procurement Professionals Future Ready?

As the procurement and supply takes on strategic responsibility, the skills required to perform the function will inevitably change. Procurement professionals will require focusing on implementing value-creating initiatives like technology acquisition, risks management and ensuring sustainability goals. The ability to work cross-functionally, cross culturally and skills like leadership, collaboration and creativity will become critical to their success.

Leon C. Megginson, Professor of Management and Marketing at Louisiana State University wrote, “According to Darwin’s Origin of Species, the species most likely to survive are not the strongest; nor are they the most intelligent; the species that survive are those that are best able to adapt to change.”

Therefore it is fitting to revisit the realm of procurement and supply education and training in the context of the changing environment and get ready for this change.


Thought Leadership