• Lewis Barnard 19/11/2018 03:54PM

    In Outsourcing

    Why are procurement teams constantly transforming?

    A bit of a generalisation with the title, but it always seems that procurement teams are going through, have just finished, or are about to embark on a transformation program.

    Why does procurement seem to be ever changing? Do other parts of the business go through the same and as frequently, but we just don't hear about it, or is procurement guilty of this?

    I believe that being adaptive and responsive is a good thing, but do you think that sometimes procurement cannot deliver what it is promised, or is supposed to, because of an ever changing landscape?

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  • Answers (4)

  • Michael Angel

    20/11/2018 01:09PM

    I guess because it is in our inherent DNA to look to continuously improve. Whilst I have no issue with that, I have one too many times witnessed change for change's sake. So my question would be to the organisation: Are you looking to transform? Or are you looking to evolve? As transformation to me suggests on the lines of radical change of everything rather than evolving a process here or an approach there.

    I do believe it's all to easy to get swept up with the idea and notion of change and often there are 2 extremes in trying desperately hard to make change work when in reality it won't and the other is that change is necessary and can work, but is met with strong resistance. Which I why I feel evolution should be the first consideration prior to a full scale change and be certain it's absolutely the only option to select. I always think of Tiger Woods when he tried to change his swing and his level of high success dried up. In some cases if it's not broke, don't try and fix it.

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    Lewis Barnard Thanks Michael. I think that you have hit the nail on the head there with the transform vs evolve. It can sometimes feel that procurement is in this constant cycle of transformation, to the extent that when they've finally finished the transformation, they are not too far away from where they first started!

    20/11/2018 01:12PM

    Michael Angel Exactly Lewis. Take Novak Djokovic. Got rid of his whole team utilising "shock treatment" results got worse. He re-hired the original team and started winning again! So all that pain just to end up where you were originally. The base of great procurement will never go wrong. Which is why evolving is a better approach because it isn't weakening the core. Just strengthening. Change causes and inflicts a lot of pain to begin with and the pain is felt long afterwards.

    20/11/2018 01:35PM

  • Christeen Jonathan Paul

    20/11/2018 06:43AM

    In my opinion,not only procurement, every business process is subject to change. We can't predefine anything. Likewise, the process of procurement too. A normal procurement process usually includes Process Planning, Defining Specifications, Make Procurement, Contract Management, Extension of Contract, Ending Contract, Process Review, Spending Thresholds. A small change to any of the process could change the entire cycle.

    Yeah Lewis, I do also sometimes feel, procurement management is not efficient enough to deliver the goodness it should actually provide for the business. But latest technologies could improve procurement management process a lot. Do anyone agree with me?

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  • Brad Blonkvist

    28/11/2018 04:14PM

    1) Execution / Communication failures
    2) Changing landscape of internal stakeholders and their priorities
    3) Introduction of new technology designed to support significant improvements in one or more metrics
    4) New impetus to demonstrate meaningful improvement in one or more metrics (new CPO, new CFO, M&A activity, etc)

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  • Chris Cliffe FCIPS MIoD

    22/11/2018 06:12PM

    Category manager comes in. Creates a strategy. Spends 3 years executing that strategy. Then is faced with repeating the process with more or less similar stakeholders, business challenges, suppliers... Never truer than in procurement is the phrase change is constant. Transformation as a word is overused and meaningless as a result. Procurement functions must be in a constantly evolving state to constantly be able to adapt to the market conditions and the needs of customers.

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