Soapbox: Prepare for a tough year

6 February 2008

In this issue's soapbox, Alastair Dryburgh says buyers need to expand their scope:

"To make their full contribution, buyers should look beyond procurement. How much do you know about the profitability of what you buy? The recent case involving one of my clients illustrates the point. They sell pens among other things. I took samples of the five most profitable and five least profitable lines and asked staff if they could put them into the correct group. This defeated almost everyone, including the sales director, manufacturing director and group finance director. Only the purchasing manager came anywhere close. How well would you do if you were faced with a similar challenge?"

Do you understand the profitability of what you buy?

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