17 January 2013 | Lorna Blackwood
What lies ahead for CIPS in 2013?
Last year saw some fundamental changes at CIPS, with a new governance structure introduced comprising of a newly elected Congress, where representation from across the world is set to help identify the future direction of CIPS and the profession.
This year, the trend for change continues. Here are some new projects and improvements that CIPS will provide in 2013:
These will be available to study from March 2013. In 2011, CIPS announced a review of the current qualification system. The feedback from this was used to form a new structure, along with changes to assessments, which has culminated in the development of a new syllabus. The five new qualifications and information on transition arrangements for current learners can be found here.
This will also be launching in March. It will offer support to those struggling to enter and advance in the procurement profession for reasons beyond their control. Further information on the charity will be available after the launch.
Supply Business magazine
This month has seen the launch of Supply Business, to replace CPO Agenda. This magazine reflects the increased attention on the profession from senior management across the private and public sector. The magazine is relevant not only to senior leaders in our profession, but also to their bosses. The first issue is out now, with articles on the procurement transformation at pharmaceutical giant Novartis, as well as what the US election means for government contracting in the US. The magazine is available on subscription (call Ryan Hadden on 00 44 207 880 7618 or email firstname.lastname@example.org).
CIPS is finalising this index, which aims to become an industry standard for sustainability evaluation. The index, developed in partnership with PRGX and the University of the West of England, will be based on the three principal pillars of sustainability: financial, environmental and social. It will offer buyers an expert, impartial and complete view of supplier sustainability, helping them to understand and minimise supply chain impact on the environment. For suppliers, it will offer an impartial, expert and benchmarked view of their sustainability credentials, enabling sales teams to deliver trusted information to buyers. CIPS hopes to launch the index in the first half of 2013.
CIPS is continuing to develop a presence in new countries. There has been a big programme of skills training in both France and Turkey. A future article on the progression of CIPS in Turkey will be published in these pages in due course. There have also been network groups developed in France, Switzerland and Germany. CIPS MENA has recently announced the formal launch of its second branch in the region.
Doha branch in Qatar opens to help achieve Vision 2030
Last month saw the formal launch of a CIPS branch in Doha, Qatar. This doubles the number of branches in the region, following the Abu Dhabi branch opening in April 2012. A first annual general meeting was also held at the opening, where executive committee members were elected.
Adil Mohammad from Qatar Shell was elected chair, with Mike Anwana from Ras Gas taking the position of vice chair.
The launch of the branch follows two years of an informal members’ group in Qatar. Run by a group of volunteers from Qatar’s contracting and procurement professionals’ community, it held a number of high-profile events and, in collaboration with CIPS’ regional office in Dubai, was instrumental in successfully hosting the second CIPS Middle East conference last year.
The AGM was followed by a training session run by Raju Patel, a consultant, lecturer and writer on strategy. The seminar was on strategy when purchasing complex services in the Middle East. It covered the challenges buyers face, negotiating tactics, strategic imperatives and how to carry out benchmarking.
CIPS MENA was delighted with the turnout, with approximately 40 people attending the AGM and a further 70 people attending the launch event. The opening of this branch will help to provide professional development for local organisations and individuals and also help achieve Qatar Vision 2030, which aims to create a sustainable economy and advance the standard of living of its people.
CIPS MENA is looking to open branches in Oman, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait in 2013.
Fellows’ network goes from strength to strength
It was a busy 2012 for CIPS fellowship. It enjoyed a great deal of success with the new programme of regular events, which started in April. These provided fellows with the opportunity to meet with other senior leaders from across the profession. The programme has provided thought-provoking discussions on key issues, interactive debates and opportunities to build contacts.
This year is starting with similar vigour, as there are already four events on the calendar. On 23 January, there is a debate about bringing your own device (laptop, tablet or smartphone) to work, a subject that has created much discussion. Future events include a Chinese New Year banquet and the Fellows Spring Dinner, where CIPS will launch the CIPS Foundation.
Last year saw a record number of 66 new fellows. Fellowship is the highest grade of membership and is awarded as a hallmark of professional contribution to the purchasing profession. Applications come from all over the world, with different areas of expertise.
Jenny Hannam and David Osborn became fellows late last year and show the diversity of applicants. Hannam is based in the UK and has been involved in promoting the procurement profession to the younger generation, volunteering in the ‘negotiation challenge’ as well as taking on the role of being an assessor.
Osborn works for BAE Systems in Saudi Arabia and has been instrumental – along with help from CIPS MENA – in creating a number of core operational initiatives for procurement within his organisation.
If you are interested in becoming a fellow, visit cips.org, where the criteria required is listed, and complete the appropriate application form.
● CIPS has achieved silver status from Investors in People (IiP). CIPS’ achievements include streamlining of governance, global focus, synergy between departmental and strategic goals and working towards common core values. There are 4,075 companies with IiP accreditation in the UK (ranging standard, bronze, silver and gold) – only 126 have the silver standard.
● Knowledge update, the new CIPS Update e-newsletter has launched. It concentrates each month on a hot topic in the profession and provides a more in-depth look, including access to books and training. This month focuses on ‘best in procurement’ with help from CIPS Supply Management Award winners and literature from CIPS Intelligence and the bookshop. Check your email for January’s issue or update your MyCIPS area of the website to ensure we have your current details.
● As the new year gets under way and thoughts turn to advancing your career, the South Wales branch is holding an event on ‘professional development and networking in procurement, logistics and transport’. Hear from CIPS, CILT and other employers about career opportunities and how you can enhance your skills. Included are workshops on what firms look for in applications and discussions about experience versus qualifications. The event is on 30 January at Cardiff Business School from 1pm. To book, visit www.cips.org
Jaguar tour drives interest
A tour of a Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) site followed by a Q&A session with the purchasing director proved a very popular event for CIPS Birmingham branch members.
Numbers were limited, but that didn’t stop people from as far afield as London and Blackpool attending. JLR has invested significant funds into the revitalisation and development of the Castle Bromwich manufacturing plant, securing a large amount of jobs in a region where youth unemployment is high and boosting the UK’s export economy.
After a fascinating tour, the group were treated to a presentation from Brian Davy, the purchasing director, who spoke about the challenges suppliers are facing in terms of meeting demand, the resurrection of manufacturing and the changing perception of the automotive industry. This led to a Q&A session, where procurement professionals questioned Davy on the lessons JLR has learned from the failure of previous automotive companies. He believed that JLR’s success came from the ability to deliver on its promises.
Quizzed about the top three challenges currently facing purchasing, Davy said: “We need to adapt to the global environment, ensure we continue to deliver new products that meet our customers’ needs and desires and, finally, have a supply chain that provides a quality product in an expeditious manner, considering the other two challenges.”
Finally, asked about the possibility of the organisation opening a manufacturing plant in China as demand increases in this part of the world, Davy reassured his UK audience by saying: “We have been fully transparent with our suppliers and we will continue with full production in the UK. Many of our suppliers are already global and are looking to harness what additional opportunities exist.”
Career-focused event gives top tips for future success
Surrey branch gave its members a head start for 2013 with an event by Hays on career development in December. Senior consultant, Paul Young, delivered a comprehensive presentation covering valuable insight on opportunities in the current market, as well as CV and interview tips.
A small but eager group of 16 members attended. Top tips included creating a planned approach to career development, a concise CV and in-depth preparation for interview.
A common grievance from recruiters is that candidates are not able to expand on aspects included in their CV.
A discussion on employers having difficulty finding people with specific skills in the £25,000-£45,000 salary bracket proved popular, concluding that salaries were often too low for the skill levels requested.
Four Hays staff covering public and private sectors, indirect and direct procurement were present, and many members stayed on to discuss their career prospects.
Bus and rail company gets go-ahead for certification
Go-Ahead has received CIPS certification as part of its three-year programme of change to raise the quality of its procurement services.
Go-Ahead is one of the UK’s leading providers of passenger transport, delivering bus and rail services. A significant contributor to the UK’s public transport infrastructure, the company employs around 22,000 people across the country and its services are used by more than a billion passengers every year.
The certification process was used to validate its existing plan and manage its supply chain risk in key areas of expenditure. As part of the overhaul of its procurement processes, Go-Ahead has introduced new systems across the group, including a procure-to-pay tool, an e-sourcing tool and a contract database.
David Brown, group chief executive of Go-Ahead, said: “The three-year programme has delivered clear improvements to both the efficiency and quality of our procurement, which is key to supporting the effective delivery of bus and rail services to our passengers.”