'Cosy' relations bad for business

1 August 2007
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02 August 2007

City firms should get buyers involved in their processes earlier, according to the former head of procurement at the Bank of England.

Graham Cooper, who spent 23 years with the bank, said firms in the city often exclude procurement from negotiations until the very end, when prices need to be driven down. He also urged companies to maintain competitive relations: "There are too many cosy relationships between supplier and buyer that are easier to maintain, but no longer delivering real measurable benefits."

But Nick Wildgoose, UK procurement director at Zurich, disagreed. "There is a lot of good practice in big professional organisations in the city. I think it's far too general and slightly misleading to say not enough is done on relationships."

However, Cooper, who has been appointed to lead a new procurement team at consultancy CityIQ, said firms needed to develop processes that evolve with the growth of their companies.


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