April 18, 2013
Supplier failures have a habit of catching their customers unprepared and making the wrong type of headlines. When I wrote in January that sustainability would be a theme for procurement in 2013, little did I imagine it would be the European meat trade that would be providing the headlines. The disturbing news stories of contaminated meat being found in products across Europe underlines the importance of a robust supplier quality programme that goes beyond your first tier suppliers. (more…)
January 7, 2013
With 2012 firmly drawn to a close, most procurement professionals will breathe a sigh of relief. It has been a tough year, full of economic uncertainty.
On the plus side, none of the doom scenarios such as the collapse of the euro have played out, but on the negative side the OECD recently slashed its global growth forecast to 2.9 per cent in 2012. This, coupled with growing public sector debt, has presents a host of challenges. (more…)
October 29, 2012
As the Euro crisis rumbles inexorably on, we lurch from one disaster to the next. Each week brings the worrying news of another protest, strike or even riot from a different corner of the continent. Over the summer, the European Central Bank’s pledge to intervene in bond markets to help troubled eurozone countries was seen as a silver bullet – some diplomats even called it “Mario Draghi’s ice cream”. But by the autumn, it had been exposed by waning enthusiasm in Germany and more challenges in Greece, Spain and, most importantly, Catalonia. (more…)
August 21, 2012
Procurement strategy has bizarrely become caught up in the US presidential election, with both candidates engaged in a bitter fight over the outsourcing and offshoring of US jobs.
But while the politicians focus on the employment issue, for most companies manufacturing or suppliers location is a complex evaluation of cost, risk and lead-time. (more…)
July 5, 2012
‘Newism’ – the subject of trendwatching.com’s July briefing – is the latest buzzword to describe why more than ever, consumers lust after the new. They say: “Newism is creative destruction, hyper-competition globalism, consumerism on steroids and a celebration of innovation, all in one. For brands, new and established, it boils down to capturing and holding consumers’ attention.” (more…)
April 5, 2012
Supplier management is often the poor relation of strategic sourcing and category management. But it is an integral part of best practice in procurement and essential if you are going to get the maximum value from your supplier relationships. Few companies take a structured approach to supplier management, but when a medium to long-term view of the value each relationship could deliver is taken, such an approach can deliver competitive advantage. (more…)
February 16, 2012
The traditional view of risk management in procurement is one of mitigation, minimisation and opportunity cost. It is about contingency planning and ‘just in case’ thinking. Few companies look to risk management as a way to steal a march on their competition, but when a medium to long-term view of the inbound supply chain is taken, this is entirely possible. (more…)