The Procurement Power List 2022 was launched at Sea Containers in London © Photo by Alex Deverill
The Procurement Power List 2022 was launched at Sea Containers in London © Photo by Alex Deverill

Tension between agility and supply is biggest procurement challenge

A tension between agility and securing supply is the central challenge procurement professionals are facing at this time, an event was told.

Kathryn Thompson, partner at Deloitte, said the way to address the challenge was technology and tools, data, and “age-old talent”.

Speaking at the launch of the Procurement Power List 2022 at Sea Containers in London, she said: “A Power List is the way procurement wins the war for talent.”

Malcolm Harrison, group CEO, CIPS, told the event people on the list were raising the profile of the profession, driving the sustainability agenda, and embedding ED&I.

“We hope that CEOs will look at the leaders on this list and embrace procurement and supply in their organisations,” he said.

Harrison said 200 names from a wide range of sectors were whittled down to create the list, which represents a “snapshot in time”.

“There is no point doing great work if no one knows about it,” he said.

Lazar Armianov, regional director – sales, northern Europe, Middle East and Africa at EcoVadis, said a power shift was taking place in businesses, from shareholders to stakeholders.

He described a “fundamental shift in the way procurement is seen”. “CEOs are empowering the procurement profession,” he said.

Graham Copeland, senior director business development at GEP, said procurement teams were working to “understand weaknesses in the supply base”. “If there is another disruptive event, can they survive?” he said.

The inflationary environment has seen the return of “should-cost modelling” and price management has become a priority, he said.

Copeland said data was important but it was necessary to be able to operate without it, with a “skilled team being comfortable with not having data”.

Armianov added: “What do we do with that data? How do I translate that data into value?”

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