This week I attended – and spoke at – Sainsbury’s fourth annual supplier conference and awards.
Alongside a host of speakers from the supermarket who addressed strategic suppliers on subjects from sustainability to logistics, online developments to customer insights, the opening presentation was given by a board director – this year, chief financial officer John Rogers.
As I said to the gathered group, strategic relationship management (SRM) doesn’t work without the support of those at the top. (more…)
My role with the London Olympics finally came to an end in March with a final report, a bit of a party and a few last words on a blog. Since the closure of the Commission for a Sustainable London 2012, I have had a bit more time to reflect on some of my other work.
For me, one of the big failures of London 2012 was to get to grips effectively with some of the ethical issues in the supply chain (despite some leading-edge work from LOCOG) and to address the question of ethical standards for sponsors. (more…)
I have put together 10 tips to help you on your next sourcing project in China. I have spent several years sourcing in China, including setting up and running representative offices for my employers in the UK. This is not a fully exhaustive list (I did have more than 30 tips, and a more detailed look at purchasing from the country will appear in an upcoming edition of SM) but they are the ones I thought most helpful to act as a checklist. (more…)
Outsourcing works when you embrace and understand the concept of a partnership approach with your chosen provider. Your partner must be seen as an integral extension of any retained function and treated in the same way as any other colleague. Only by understanding that success is a shared responsibility between you and the provider, not the sole responsibility of either party, will you be able to create a powerful platform for transformation. Outsourcing works when it is underpinned with a clear mandate and executive sponsorship from the business to effect change. Of course, if it was easy we would all be doing it. (more…)
Alex Martin is writing a series of blogs about studying part-time for an MBA. You can find his previous entries here.
My fellow students and I returned to a moderately sunny Geneva in April for an intense module in finance and management accounting. The regular five-hour drive from Mannheim in Germany was not too bad, and although I had left my winter tyres on the car in case it was still a little snowy in Switzerland, thankfully I was wrong.
Carried over from March was my assignment in macroeconomics and, as with all the previous modules, there was also a lot of preparation to be done for the next one. (more…)
Sustainability is currently a key driver in the procurement profession. Purchasing decisions on ethical sourcing and corporate social responsibility can contribute to the achievement of sustainable development goals within an organisation.
But what about closer to home? How eco-friendly are you personally in your workplace? Are you a culprit of wasting energy, not recycling or printing out too many documents (guilty as charged)? (more…)
We’re going back to basics with this post. I meet non-procurement specialists with procurement responsibilities that just need a ‘nudge’. SM readers should find this list helpful when advising their non-procurement’ colleagues. To set up and manage supplier (vendor or contractor) engagements is tough for some people who are outside procurement (which is why they need us) – especially because some suppliers are much better at bidding than they are at delivering the contract.
How do they get the core information they need to ensure a successful supplier engagement? Here’s a simple but incredibly effective checklist I recommend to our clients. These 10 simple questions will improve your colleagues’ approach to supplier engagements. Misaligned expectations are the number one cause of commercial disputes. (more…)
In every facet of our life, technology is present. So it should come as no surprise that technology is present in the fulfillment industry and is playing a massive part.
Something as staid as the warehouse has been streamlined and revolutionised as a result of technology making it more proficient and organised. Warehouses must be far more efficient because online shopping has made the fulfillment industry more relevant. A company such as Amazon ships millions of dollars’ worth of merchandise every day, which would never have happened before the internet age. (more…)
Want to get your business to
consider sustainability, but don’t know how?
Try talking to them about risk.
That’s the advice of Professor Andrew Douglas from the University of the West of England. Addressing buyers at the Sustainable Purchasing & Supply Summit in London last month as he helped launch the CIPS Sustainability Index, Douglas said people now see the sustainability agenda as a way of managing risk. (more…)
As Sainsbury’s Marketing Director, I am responsible for a wide remit, so the need for a clear
set of performance measures across the category
is paramount. We all know one of these measures
will be the ‘ugly duckling’ – value. But however ugly this duckling may be, its place in the marketing
function is vital.
To achieve commercial success in this area, we needed to look not only at the structure of the procurement relationship required to deliver value, but crucially, what skill set was required to deliver on tough challenges in marketing. (more…)