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How To Be A Better Purchasing Professional

PurchTips - Edition # 189

By Charles Dominick, SPSM


Can You Become A Better Purchasing Professional?

A member of the SPSM Group on LinkedIn recently posed to the group a question about how one can become a better purchasing professional. This may be a question on your mind as well, so I will share my response in this edition of PurchTips.

Becoming a better purchasing professional is a seven-step process in my eyes. Those seven steps, which can be adapted to your specific situation, are:

  1. Define the criteria for being a good purchasing professional. Is it cost savings? Continuity of supply? Innovation? All of these and more?
  2. Determine metrics that support the criteria. For example, for continuity of supply, you may select "Percentage of on-time delivery."
  3. For each metric, determine the value that would separate "good" performance from "average" or "mediocre" performance in your particular situation. For example, for actual cost savings captured, is it $10,000 per year? $100,000 per year? $1,000,000 per year?
  4. Establish a baseline of your current performance. Now that you know the line that separates good performance from mediocre performance, measure your current performance to determine whether you meet, exceed, or fall short of that standard.
  5. Analyze what you do for improvement opportunities. Identify changes that you can make that will help you improve your numbers. If you already exceed the standard, aim even higher!
  6. Improve your performance. Now that you've identified changes you can make, make them!
  7. Hold yourself accountable. Put in place methods of ensuring that you do not lose focus. This can come in the form of charts that you hang in your office, promises to management, self-reward systems, or even hiring a personal coach. It's easy to lose momentum if you don't have some tangible way of maintaining your focus.

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Spotlight On Professional Development Opportunities

SPSM Certification

Are you tired of not getting enough opportunities, respect, and money out of your purchasing career? Well, guess what? Nothing will change unless you take action towards becoming a world-class purchasing professional.

You see, today's employers refuse to reward employees for yesterday's skills. They demand that purchasing professionals like you use the most modern skills and achieve unprecedented results. They want you to save more money, achieve better operational performance, and reduce risk.

Earning your SPSM® Certification by completing the Senior Professional in Supply Management® Program is the action to take if you want to bring the most modern purchasing   practices into your organization and achieve your career potential. Learn how to earn your SPSM® Certification (and perhaps get an iPod) at:

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Worried about job security? The report "Career Survival in Supply Management" can help you.

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