08 December 2008 | Paul Snell
The recession is a "golden age" for purchasers, a top procurement consultant has claimed.
Wolfgang Steck, vice-president procurement for AT Kearney, told a forum of travel buyers in London the worsening economic climate is "a window of opportunity" to transform the behaviour of travellers.
"It changes the game," said Steck to the Association of Corporate Travel Executives. "This is a golden age for procurement."
He added procurement teams are working overtime and even claimed some CPOs were cancelling holidays to relaunch their strategies during the recession. "We have not been so busy for years," he said.
Examples of behavioural change he believes will be easier to introduce are rewriting travel policy and shifting from face-to-face meetings to video-conferencing. Steck regards cost-saving as doubly important to untie the paradox buyers face: "People need to meet because companies have become global, but they have been told to bring travel costs down."