PurchTips - Edition # 207

 

This is the Web-based version of this article. Click here for the printer-friendly version.
* More Purchasing Articles

Picture of Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3

Today's Biggest Supply Chain Threat?

By Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3

Are You Ignoring A Big Supply Chain Threat?

What if your most critical supplier suddenly had no Internet capabilities for an extended period of time? What if there suddenly was no Internet? How would your organization survive?

Think a long, worldwide Internet outage is impossible? Think again.

The Internet is showing signs of vulnerability at a time when business is depending on it the most. Last month, our website was brought down for days by a DDoS attack. (Student access to courses, though, was virtually uninterrupted thanks to the use of a backup site.)

When a site like ours gets attacked the way that "household names" like Twitter or CNN.com have, it shows that any supplier of yours could be a target. But website downtime is only the tip of the iceberg. I personally know of two companies whose entire Internet capabilities for employees have been down for months due to Internet security problems.

These types of situations are likely to become worse and more widespread. In the book "Cyber War," authors Richard Clark and Robert Knake write "If cyber warriors crash networks, wipe out data, and turn computers into doorstops, then a financial system could collapse, a supply chain could halt, a satellite could spin out of orbit into space, an airline could be grounded. These are not hypotheticals. Things like this have already happened."

Governments are responding to this threat. But part of the response may make you more concerned than at ease. For example, the Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act of 2010, if passed into law, would give the President of the United States of America the power to shut down the Internet for up to four months.

Leading companies avoid depending too heavily on a single supplier due to risk. But, if all of your suppliers depend too heavily on the Internet, the potential for a long, worldwide Internet outage represents perhaps the biggest threat to your supply chain.

Are you prepared to conduct procurement in a world without the Internet? You better be.

I suggest that you research the vulnerability of the Internet, express to management any concerns about Internet over-dependence, and use these steps to develop a contingency plan for an "Internetless" supply chain:

  • Ask your organization "How would we conduct business if the Internet was unavailable to anyone for an extended period of time?" Then, document those ideas and begin transforming the document into an actionable plan.
  • Ask your critical suppliers "How would you conduct business if the Internet was unavailable to anyone for an extended period of time?" and require formal, documented responses. Scrutinize their responses and work with them to ensure readiness.

(keep reading for a FREE Offer)

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.

Is lacking a purchasing certification keeping you from getting the results, opportunities, respect, and money that you want out of your career? Today's employers refuse to reward employees for yesterday's skills. They want you to save more money, achieve better operational performance, and reduce risk. They demand that purchasing professionals like you achieve unprecedented results and without the most modern skills that can be a challenging feat!

So how can you acquire the most modern skills, achieve meaningful results, and convincingly prove your capabilities to today's employers? There is an impressive purchasing certification program that will teach you what you need to accomplish all of this and more. It is the SPSM® Certification, earned by completing the Senior Professional in Supply Management® Program. And you could earn it in less than a year - maybe even much less than a year!

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 iPad) (with the option of getting a Study Guide on an iPad) at:

Distinguishing yourself as an achiever in purchasing is key to sustaining a rewarding career, even in these difficult economic times. Earning your SPSM® Certification by completing the Senior Professional in Supply Management® Program is 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 iPad) at:

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. And if you sign up for the Senior Professional in Supply Management® Program on or before May 31, 2008, SPSMSM Certification Program on or before 4/30/2007, you also get these and other bonuses valued at over $700:

  • FREE $30 gift certificate to Amazon.com!
  • FREE CD-ROM with printer-friendly versions of the class materials!
  • FREE Purchasing Performance Measurement spreadsheet template!
  • FREE audio CD about purchasing job security!

To learn how to earn your SPSM® Certification and get these valuable bonuses, visit:

Earning your Senior Professional in Supply Management® (SPSM) Certification is the action to takeif you want to bring the most modern purchasing practices into your organization and achieve your career potential. Learn how to earn your SPSMSM Certification at:

Learn how to earn your SPSM® Certification at:

www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/spsm.html

The Latest Purchasing News!

FREE Offer!!!

Purchasing Leaders: What are the secrets to having a successful team? This question is answered by our FREE whitepaper "The Purchasing Leader's Guide To A More Successful Team."

To Get Your Copy of

"The Purchasing Leader's Guide To A More Successful Team,"

Visit http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/plg


Free Procurement Training & Certification Starter Kit

This Starter Kit gives procurement professionals like you a clear idea on what it will take to become certified. You'll get an excellent feel for what you will need to learn and how long it will take.

Click here to learn more

Included in your free Starter Kit:

  • Access to two lessons from courses that are part of the Senior Professional in Supply Management® Program
  • A Certification & Training Planning Template
  • Case studies
  • A free Basic Membership in the NLPA

Together, these materials will help you decide how well the SPSM® Certification can help you achieve your career goals.

So, what are you waiting for? Begin your pursuit of a more rewarding procurement career – get your Procurement Training & Certification Starter Kit now by signing up for a free NLPA Basic Membership!

If you are already a member of the NLPA, click here to login and visit the "Starter Kit" tab to access these resources.