The National Procurement Service for Wales win at the CIPS Supply Management Awards 2015 © Carmen Valino
The National Procurement Service for Wales win at the CIPS Supply Management Awards 2015 © Carmen Valino

Revealed: Winning formula for CIPS Supply Management Awards

19 February 2016

Success at the CIPS Supply Management Awards kick-starts positive changes within a company

Following last year’s Awards, the successful entrants gathered at Manchester City Football Club to explain what the accolade had meant to them and their employer. Delegates heard from all 12 winners, with Cath Hill, group marketing and membership director of CIPS, and David Saint, procurement director at the Football Club, also on the podium.

Speakers agreed winning had been good for them and their companies and increased respect within their organisations for what they had achieved, helping them instigate further successful procurement projects.

Paul Street, procurement technology leader at URENCO, a company that produces enriched uranium and whose former head of procurement won Professional of the Year, said: “People want to come and work for us because of the CIPS award, and those within the procurement team are proud to be part of it now. And we’ve had acknowledgement and recognition from head office.”

Another winner was Compass Group, for Most Improved Procurement Operation (step change). Oliver Cock, commercial managing director, said the award “gives our suppliers confidence in us. For the team itself, it was real recognition for them.”

Most Innovative Use of Technology was awarded to IBM for the Supplier IQ application that transformed how IBM procurement consumes and exploits vendor data. Barry Ward, global procurement brand manager at IBM, said: “Winning was a boost to morale. It renewed our focus to look at other parts of our source-to-pay process framework. And it helped the development team gain further recognition internally.”

The National Procurement Service for Wales won Most Improved Procurement Operation (start-up). Sue Moffatt, commercial director (pictured), said that, in terms of reputation, “it has been very important.” She said: “The Minister did an oral statement in the Welsh Assembly about this, which was amazing.”

This year’s Awards will take place on 14 September at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel. The deadline for entries is 6 May, so now is the time to start thinking about your submissions. As always, this will be an important night in everyone’s calendar, and with record numbers last year, it’s expected to be a sell-out event.

For more information on how to enter and attend the Awards ceremony, contact Jo Plinston at

How to submit a successful entry

CIPS global marketing and membership director and judge Cath Hill reveals what works

Make it easy to understand
A submission has to be written so the general public can understand it. And it needs a hook – the first couple of sentences are important to draw people in. Always avoid jargon, and back up your claims with evidence.

Ask for feedback
It’s good to test out an entry on somebody else and see if it is inspiring. It’s important, too, from a design perspective, to make sure it’s laid out well.

Have a clear picture
Be sure to pick the right category, and ask yourself, is the project too big? And is it too soon to enter it? If the outcome of your project isn’t clear yet, better to leave it a year.

What the winners say:

Give it time
“I wrote 1,500 to 2,000 words and edited it down to 500. Start early as it takes time. It took me six and a half weeks to pare it down. Then I gave the submission to the PR department and they took out some of the acronyms.”
Paul Street, procurement technology leader at URENCO

Use a fresh pair of eyes
“Get someone independent to look at it once it’s finished. My wife did. The judges said it was very well thought out and executed.”
Barry Ward, global procurement brand manager at IBM 

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Richmond upon Thames, London (Greater)
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