Of good repute

10 July 2012
David Noble, chief executive, Chartered Institute of Purchasing & SupplyWho would top your list of the world’s most reputable companies? Whose products and services would you recommend to your fellow procurement professionals? And are you basing that on an objective assessment of the quality of their products or on what their name means to you – whether that’s their green credentials, technical innovation or customer service? A recent study by the Reputation Institute, Global RepTrak™ 100, confirms that an organisation’s reputation is more about what others believe it stands for than what it actually sells. 100,000 consumers were surveyed, from 15 countries around the world representing 75 per cent of global GDP. The aim was to understand how the leading global companies are perceived, what it takes to grow a strong global reputation and how that relates to their financial success. The survey measures consumers’ feelings of trust, esteem and admiration, and the scoring is based on seven criteria: products/services, innovation, governance, workplace, citizenship, leadership and financial performance. The Reputation Institute says the 2012 survey shows how consumers view these last five criteria is more important than what they think about the products and services in determining purchasing behaviour. The survey has also thrown up some intriguing data. 75 per cent of the 100 companies’ revenue is generated outside their home country, but only 11 per cent have stronger reputations internationally than at home. For an organisation like CIPS with such a significant global footprint, that’s food for thought. Our ability to grow and promote our standards around the world depends on how our ‘brand value’ is perceived as a chartered professional body and how relevant this is to our audiences, wherever they are located. And the company with the top global reputation? BMW, closely followed by Sony and Walt Disney. Ask BMW the secret of its success and it will talk about its philosophy of ‘100 per cent focus’ on customer service and its commitment to work with its strategic suppliers to constantly innovate and meet customers’ needs before they even know they have them. Taking a leaf out of Apple’s book, BMW now has its own ‘genius programme’, to be launched in Europe and China this year, where design and engineering experts will be on hand in showrooms to explain the latest vehicle technology to customers in a deliberately low-key sales environment. The top performers come from different industries, but one thing they all have in common is an ability to tune into the needs and desires of their customers. Learning lessons of resilience Anticipating, mitigating and learning from supply chain disruption is a critical business area where procurement professionals can add real value to their organisation’s risk management strategy. Our expertise on the subject gives us a great platform to talk about supply chain risk in the media and raise our profession’s profile. Over the past three years, the Business Continuity Institute’s annual supply chain resilience survey has continued to highlight the vulnerability of global supply chains and expose just how deep rooted the disruption can be, originating well below tier one suppliers. This year’s survey asks about the impact of such disruption and what techniques can be used to see exactly what is happening, minimise the adverse effects and restore surety of supply. I would urge CIPS members to share your experience in this important area. The survey takes around 10 minutes to complete and responses are all anonymous, but every member completing it will receive a complimentary copy of the final report. To take part, go to www.surveymonkey.com/s/BCIsupplychainresilience2012 ☛ If you have any comments or wish to raise a topic, please get in touch at ceoblog@cips.org
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