Survey uncovers major procurement skills gap

28 July 2011

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28 July 2011 | Angeline Albert

Some 76 per cent of chief procurement officers (CPOs) feel the skills of their purchasing staff either “need improvement” (65 per cent) or display a “significant gap” (11 per cent), according to research from Ardent Partners

A survey of 218 CPOs around the world, entitled CPO Rising 2011, includes a procurement competency matrix, which considered the higher-level skills a purchasing department should have. Contract management, category management, data analysis and presentation expertise were rated as average by CPOs, with no competencies achieving a good or excellent rating.     

The report said there was a “picture of a very middle-of-the-road set of skills residing within the typical procurement department”. It added: “For the average department, opportunities for improvement abound.”    

CPOs rated almost half of list of skills in the matrix (six out of 14) as below average. These were managing supplier performance, managing supplier risk, supply market knowledge, leveraging of technology to drive business value, cash management and business consulting skills.

Cash management and use of technology are two areas CPOs should focus on to make it a core competency in their department, said Ardent Partners. CPOs working towards this include Luca Guzzabocca, director of procurement at Banca Monte Dei Paschi Di Siena in Italy, who has cash management as a top organisational priority every year.    

☛  For a copy of the report contact Ardent Partners

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