He’s at it again…
Michael Lamoureux over at the Sourcing Innovation blog is rounding up us spend management/supply management blogger types to do another cross-blog series. This time, the theme is “The Top Three” – each blogger will rant about his/her favorite three issues in supply chain management and Michael will bring them all together.
A brilliant idea, I think!
So, I’m going to get right into it with my top three, all based around the concept of continuous improvement – something every purchasing leader should be dedicated to. This will be short and sweet as there have just been an unbelieveable amount of things going on here at Next Level Purchasing headquarters.
#3 – Measurements: Any successful continuous improvement initiative really needs to revolve around measurements. You simply have to keep score to know how good or bad you are, what your goals are, how close you are to your goals, etc. Measurements go a long way towards demonstrating your value to senior management.
#2 – Benchmarking: Measurements alone are great for focusing on and motivating goal-based performance improvements. But it helps to know if your goals are reasonable as well as challenging. One way of doing this is to examine what other organizations are doing. Someone may think that their on-time supplier delivery rate of 80% is great until they find out that another company in their industrial park is achieving 94% on-time delivery.
#1 – Skills: You cannot implement improvements – internally or externally – without having a skilled purchasing team. Note that I didn’t say an experienced purchasing team. Someone who has been in the purchasing department for 25 years just isn’t going to be a great contributor unless s/he is educated in the latest purchasing best practices. Skilled purchasing professionals know how to develop a strategy for the culture of their organization, understand what tactics to utilize to deliver results, and are able to execute at a high level of expertise and intelligence and with a high degree of confidence only attained through proper professional development.
Phew! It is a relief to get this post done as I know Michael has wanted to wrap this up for some time now.
Back to the grindstone…