Using big-data analytics to drive forward business value in procurement - Part 1

WalterCharles_.jpgA conversation with Walter Charles, Chief Procurement Officer, Biogen.

Walter Charles' global procurement teams support billions of dollars in annual purchases. Having spent decades at Kraft Foods, Kellogg's, Johnson & Johnson, and now Biogen, Charles provides keen insight into the state of procurement today as well as how big data analytics is disrupting the landscape to provide CPOs with meaningful answers to more strategic procurement execution.

Bad news is good news for vendor vetting

RudiKruger.jpgNews travels fast in this digital age and while it may be better for stress management to avoid being bombarded with an influx of negative news, in the case of supply chain, forewarned is forearmed. Keeping abreast of news about your suppliers enables you to mitigate risk.

Staying up-to-date with what is being reported about past, current and potential vendors can help you to understand potential risks earlier and gives you enough time to strategise before it turns into a crisis, Rudi Kruger, General Manager: Data Services, LexisNexis South Africa, told SmartProcurement.

Ronald Mlalazi (FCIPS) appointed MD of Commerce Edge

Ronald_small.jpgCommerce Edge South Africa has announced the appointment of Ronald Mlalazi (FCIPS) as their new Managing Director.

He succeeds Bernie van Niekerk, who, after 18 years leading the business, will now focus on Commerce Edge's international business expansion.

Mlalazi joins Commerce Edge's team of country heads from Australia, Africa outside of SA, and soon-to-be-established USA.

Municipal materials management may require a counter-intuitive purchasing approach

StephenBauld_100.jpgEnsuring that the right quality of an item is ordered and delivered may seem like a fairly obvious responsibility. However, doing so in practice requires a fairly sophisticated understanding of market conditions and user requirements, which, like many organisations, municipal departments do not possess.

"There is a higher probability of generating measurable savings if municipal purchasing departments play a pro-active role to assist client departments to identify needs before they arise", says government procurement expert Stephen Bauld, in this month's SmartProcurement. Bauld argues that successful municipal materials management may require a counter-intuitive approach towards purchasing.

Good governance + accountability = long-term socio-economic development

DouglasBoateng.jpgLocal government procurement practitioners need to recognise the inextricable link between good governance, accountability and long-term socio-economic development, says Prof. Douglas Boateng.

Can corporate procurement help create the next generation of entrepreneurs?

DumisaniMkhonza.jpgNearly half of the 10 million students that graduate across Africa each year, are unable to get jobs. One of the only ways to bring down those numbers in a sustainable way is to create an enabling environment for young entrepreneurs to not only start businesses, but to continue to run and maintain them.

As it stands right now, though, many countries are failing to foster this kind of environment. The 2016/2017 Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) shows that two-thirds of early-stage small and medium-sized suppliers closed their doors predominantly because of problems accessing finance to carry on operating.

How do we change this reality? Dumisani Mkhonza, COO, Head of Solutions, Enterprise & Supply Chain Development (ESD) at Absa, considers where corporate supply chains and the business world fits into the equation, in this month's SmartProcurement.

Join at Smart Procurement World's Smart Supplier Conference, which has grown into a premier entrepreneurship event on the annual South African entrepreneur calendar

Skills and characteristics of a successful global procurement manager

EmanAbouzeid.jpgCall it 'purchasing', 'procurement', 'supply management' or 'sourcing', the role of procurement within organisations is changing significantly. Purchasing departments are, at last, moving from reactive to proactive, responding to management's demand that they add value to an enterprise rather than retain their traditional role as cost centre.

Consequently, the procurement manager of today needs to be a far different type of individual than in previous years. The characteristics and skills sets required are much broader in scope and much more detailed in their execution.

Eman Abouzeid (CSCP, CIPS), a procurement and supply chain professional with global experience, unpacks the skills that global sourcing professionals should master.

Join us at Smart Procurement World for a keynote presentation from CIPS on the skill sets required of the future procurement professional: Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Blockchain are rapidly redefining the traditional role of procurement professionals. Simultaneously, organisations require ever-higher standards of corporate governance and social responsibility.

Securing supply chain talent: think outside of the box

Recruitment_.jpgIt happens to all of us at some point... you get all of the way through your recruitment process - the approval to hire, sourcing, interviews, assessments and the offer - only to lose a hard-to-find candidate at the last hurdle.

Such a last-minute loss could be owed to a number of factors: a better offer, a counter-offer, a difference in career path. Irrespective of the reason, it's frustrating, disheartening and can have real business impact.

As employers, we sometimes forget that recruitment is an audition, both for the prospective employee and for ourselves. And, we don't always hold all of the cards.

To improve our chances of securing top talent, while minimising the dreaded last-minute offer decline, supply chain recruitment specialist Tech-Pro suggests we focus on the following areas.

6 ways to prevent a negotiation blow up

Negotiation_blowup.jpgYou're preparing for a big negotiation with a group of key suppliers and you're already anticipating a disastrous outcome. Perhaps you already know that the people you're dealing with are difficult, or you've heard about their reputation. Or, maybe you know your own negotiation skills leave a lot to be desired when it comes to crisis management.

Whatever your reason for being nervous, there's no denying that negotiations can be tough. But, the best thing you can do to lessen the tension and prevent a negotiation from blowing up is to be prepared.

At a recent negotiation roundtable on the topic of emotions and negotiation, a number of procurement and sales leaders gave advice on how to keep negotiations sweet.

Join us at Smart Procurement World to discuss the top ten negotiation failures: negotiation is a key skill for any procurement professional. Knowing what to do and how to do it is important. But equally important is know what not to do!

July PMI reaches 51.5 − manufacturing "off to a good start" in Q3

PMI.jpgThe seasonally-adjusted Absa Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) rose to 51.5 index points in July, up from 47.9 in June. The current level is comfortably above the neutral 50-point mark and is supported by four out of five key sub-components being in positive terrain.

"This suggests that the manufacturing sector got off to a good start in the first month of Q3 of 2018", said the Bureau for Economic Research, who conducts the survey.

Procurement in 7 memes

DistractedBoyfriend_small.jpgThey say a picture tells a thousand words. How about a procurement meme?

Okay, millennials. Strap yourselves in, because Hugo Britt, Content Manager at Procurious, is going to attempt to meme. Is meme even a verb? Perhaps not, but that isn't going to stop him.

For older readers who don't really know (or care) what memes are, don't worry - Britt's got you covered. Whether it's Bad Luck Brian, Kermit Sipping Tea, or King Leonidas screaming "SPARTA", Britt will attempt to add a bit of context around the meme before applying a Procurement gripe to each.

Join Britt at Smart Procurement World Gauteng in September, where he'll present procurement's "guide to blockchain technology and how it will change our world". He'll look at early applications of blockchain in supply chain, specifically automotive, freight and logistics.


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