8 November 2012 | Lorna Blackwood
Swapping tips for success
Members of the North Lancashire branch gave procurement advice to the managing director of Accrington Stanley Football Club in return for a training session for their children. While the kids learned how to be the next Wayne Rooney, the adults explored the club’s procurement processes and offered advice. A follow-up session a few weeks later was used to present structured recommendations to managing director Rob Heys.
Branch chairman Stuart Quinn told CIPS News: “It was a great evening and the training session brought in new faces.” Members recommended the club explore areas such as regular budget reviews to support negotiations on future deals, combine purchasing requirements with other local clubs and use a three-way match process when invoicing. They also suggested it find new income streams for the ground and ticket promotions.
CIPS member David Bate, who is head of purchasing at Vernacare in the energy sector, has offered to help with this category once a month.
The club has grown substantially in 10 years and now has a turnover of £2 million. Heys said: “It was great to have a room full of experts to help our systems catch up with other professional clubs. The advice was superb, as they fully grasped the size of our operation and the amount of money we have to play with. All their recommendations can be implemented fairly quickly and with little cost.”
Aberdeen Oil & Gas completes bespoke corporate award
The first group of students to complete a bespoke CIPS corporate award programme for the oil and gas industry in Aberdeen graduated in September.
The CIPS Syndicated Corporate Award was designed to help attract and retain talent in the sector, which has a shortage of procurement professionals. CIPS recognised this and with the help of the industry, devised a programme where practitioners came together to improve their skills.
Steve Johnson, head of global procurement and supply chain management at Prosafe Offshore, had two of his team complete the training. He told CIPS News he has seen immediate benefits.
“There’s been a tangible contribution to efficiencies in the way we manage our supply chain, from improved planning and strategic thought, to securing better lead times and performance from an often complex and resource-constrained supply base.”
CIPS currently runs two courses: the practitioner and advanced practitioner programmes. Delegates work on assignments to apply their learning directly to achieving the objectives of their organisation, as well as working towards an internationally recognised standard. These take from 12 to 18 months and those who complete them become either associate members or achieve full membership status with the advanced course.
New Aberdeen courses will be launched next year and, following their success, similar oil and gas programmes will be run in other appropriate locations.
☛ See David Noble's November column for more information
Newly elected congress to discuss global development
This month sees the inaugural meeting of the newly elected and created CIPS Congress. The event, on 29 November in Peterborough, will take on a ‘getting to know you’ style.
A buddy scheme will pair up experienced members with newly elected ones, to help them get up to speed on the role of the congress and the agenda.
CIPS describes the body as the first wholly elected, truly representative group, with representation from across the world, including students.
Congress will look at the global problems facing both the business world and the procurement profession to identify the future direction of CIPS and the profession.
It will also discuss how to develop the CIPS brand internationally. Members will then be asked to collect feedback from their regions and feed this into the debate at the main congress meeting on 21 and 22 March next year. At that event, members will be working on the key themes for CIPS’ next three-year corporate strategy.
Congress chairwoman Melinda Johnson said: “I have great ambitions for the congress. I want us to be a group who know each other well, support one another and communicate regularly. That’s not to say we’ll always agree on everything – an element of challenge keeps things on the right tracks – but I hope we can all pull together and deliver at pace, with pride, passion and of course professionalism.”
☛ See a list of those on congress, and read David Noble’s blog on the subject
Michelle Wang becomes first Chinese national fellow
Michelle Wang has created quite a splash since joining CIPS in 2008.
In just four years, she has risen to vice chairwoman of the Derbyshire branch, is a member of congress and is playing a key role in developing CIPS’ strategy for China.
Her endeavours have now rewarded her with fellowship – the highest accolade from the institute and she is the first Chinese national to do so.
She said: “I am very proud of my achievements. As a key member of the China Strategy Group of CIPS, I am keen to further support strategic development in Asia, including membership expansion, corporate services and the growth of the purchasing profession throughout the world.”
Wang also wants to encourage the next generation into the profession. Earlier this year, she was a volunteer mentor for Solihull College’s entrance into CIPS’ Negotiation Challenge.
The initiative pitted teams from 10 UK colleges against one another using their negotiation skills to secure areas of land in a theoretical property development task. Wang’s support and expertise paid off when Solihull College won the challenge.
Despite all the honours and her role as a purchasing specialist at Rolls-Royce, Wang is determined to keep up her work at a local level. “I am keen to promote the local branch as a platform for members to connect, share and learn from each other and I’m eager to foster strong relationships with other local professional bodies, business, colleges and schools.”
☛ Find out more about becoming a fellow
- Paul Davis, managing director of consultancy Sigma, offered suggestions to improve relations between the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and industry at a lunch seminar on 19 September.
The improvements included defining value for money, reducing the time to contract and undertaking detailed stakeholder analysis.
The presentation reviewed the process contractors go through to produce a bid, detailing what happens before and after the bid arrives and the mistakes made.
Afterwards, there was a challenging discussion among the 80 audience members, who were from a range of commercial, project and financial backgrounds.
- The annual branch Chair Conference will be held this Friday and Saturday, the 9-10 November, at the Hilton Garden Inn, Birmingham.
There will be an induction for all new committee members, followed by talks from CIPS on topics including qualifications, governance changes, website improvements and rebranding. Both days will include workshop and Q&A sessions.
- The Pan Africa Conference 2013 will be held over two days on 21-22 May in Ghana.
CIPS Africa asks members to save the date and look out for more information on the venue and programme that will follow on the CIPS website.
David Noble urges members to grasp opportunities
A new qualification syllabus, a new index and a new magazine are some of the initiatives for 2013 announced by CIPS CEO, David Noble, in his opening speech at this year’s CIPS Annual Conference in London.
Following the event last month, Noble went on a two-week tour of UK cities, promoting his vision for the future of CIPS. At the Derbyshire branch meeting, held at the University of Derby on 10 October, he told members the new qualification syllabus will be rolled out in March 2013. He said: “The core of CIPS is education and the new syllabus will keep us ahead of our competitors.” He said the profession was becoming more complex and CIPS is helping with the development of a new award, which is a qualification on from MCIPS.
The institute will be launching an index in the next financial year: a Sustainability Index will be available in association with PRGX, a global business analytics and information services firm. A new magazine, Supply Business will replace Supply Management’s sister title CPO Agenda. It will contain more input from the senior stakeholders of CPOs and target CEOs, COOs and CFOs to promote procurement.
Noble warned there is more to do to promote the profession. “Businesses spend more than two thirds of revenue on non-labour costs, therefore supply chain management needs to be at the heart of the business,” he said. “If we don’t hold our line, we will lose it. We have to show off our strengths. Too many other professionals, such as lawyers and quantity surveyors, are encroaching on our territory. We need to define our lines and fight for them. It’s the only way our profession can move forward.”
Off to a palm island for CIPS MENA
Hotel resort Atlantis The Palm in Dubai has joined forces with CIPS MENA for its staff to complete a skills development programme.
The hotel was keen to push the procurement and supply management department into a more strategic role and CIPS MENA offered advice and expertise to help create a five-day training programme with a focus on cutting- edge practices.
Atlantis The Palm is a 1,539-room, ocean-themed resort hotel, located at the centre of the crescent on the man-made Palm Island in Dubai. It is the first client for CIPS MENA in the hospitality industry and it is hoped the partnership will help raise the profile of the profession in this area. Both sides are eager to expand the scope of the relationship, which could see CIPS regularly consulted by the hotel in an advisory capacity.
Logistics firm Geodis proves its procurement prowess
Geodis Supply Chain Optimisation (SCO) is the first fourth-party logistics provider to receive CIPS certification. The organisation believes this independent audit will help demonstrate to its customers and suppliers that it has robust procurement policies.
The European company has a network covering 120 countries and offers a range of logistics services that meet the particular needs of each sector of the economy. The group’s 31,000 employees provide flexibility, a wealth of multicultural experience and a genuine local service to customers.
Gaining CIPS certification has already helped the company with process efficiencies, professional development, better working methods and the improved profile of the procurement function. Karen Heys, vice president of Geodis SCO, said: “This certification has brought tremendous value to the SCO division and will be used to demonstrate to the marketplace that our fourth-party logistics procurement processes are robust, independent and global.”