On the 15th February 2011, with great pride and enthusiasm, David Noble, CIPS CEO, alongside Garry Pita, General manager: Business Services at Transnet, awarded the CIPS Advanced Practitioners Certificate to 6 learners from Transnet. Garry Pita, in his opening remarks said that the development of people with procurement skills and knowledge, is imperative for Transnet as an
organisation, and also for the country. Supply chain can be an effective driver of growth and job creation, and so is a great tool for achieving national imperatives.
Also present at the ceremony was Andre Coetzee, MD of CIPS Southern Africa, who manage the Programme for Transnet. Andre further commented, "Transnet recognises the wide range of benefits that professional procurement can bring an organisation, such as reducing total cost mitigating commercial risk, securing supply chains, driving socially responsible procurement policies, improving process, driving quality standards, reducing waste and driving better business outcomes across the business. Transnet further recognises the link between financial performance and sustained shareholder value and investment in professional procurement".
The 6 have successfully completed the Corporate Award Programme (known within Transnet as the Learning in Action Programme), which Transnet runs as part of the CIPS Programme, within the Transnet Procurement Academy. Indeed, CIPS work with many major corporates throughout the world delivering these programmes and demand is growing all the time because employers want people who can make a difference in the business rather than showing they can pass exams. Transnet, being the first of the SOEs to implement the CIPS Programme in 2007, is now seeing the second cohort of learners complete this programme, with a third cohort soon to commence.
Transnet’s objectives with the Academy and the Learning in Action Programme, is to deliver a cadre of professionally trained and qualified people who will be able to:
- Deliver sustainable commercial solutions across the business
- Implement measurable business improvements, with cost saving and
- Contribute to a low risk supply chain
- Support more effective business outcomes
The Corporate Award (or Learning in Action Programme) is a highly tailored training programme with similar range and depth of learning to that of the more formal CIPS ladder of qualifications but it is designed to reflect how procurement adds value within a business and in so doing maximise profitability. The focus is always on the application of learning in the work place. As one of a number of routes to CIPS membership, Corporate Award offers an opportunity for flexibility in the design, delivery and assessment of each programme. It is a route to achieving membership at Associate and Full Membership (MCIPS).
For the practical element of the Programme, this group individually undertook projects ranging from the strategic approach to savings, identifying the commodities, implementing initiatives that can be tracked in order to deliver on the savings target on a monthly basis. One learner, Zondi Maswanganyi, undertook a lean transaction project, reviewing the current open tender process as well as reducing the lead time to two months (as opposed to 4 months) as per the Service Level Agreement (SLA) between Supply Management and the business units. From this project, Transnet Rail Engineering now has only one acquisition council as opposed to two, when it comes to any business award exceeding R1m and so the project has benefitted all stakeholders of Supply Management.
Bertrand du Plessis said of the Programme, “I have gained a vast knowledge on strategic methodologies, techniques and theories that can be used. It is almost impossible to imagine doing procurement properly without a thorough knowledge of the business and procurement methodologies, and keeping business objectives in the forefront when planning procurement strategies.
The corporate award programme has been a perfect tool for achieving familiarity with such a diverse subject as Purchasing and Supply. It’s an excellent programme for individuals looking for self development and to increase their contributions to an organisation.”
Raj Ramlaul, who delivered the Valedictorian address, said attaining an award that marks your professionalism, and indicates your capability is an encouragement to strive for and attain one’s true potential. And with those words, extended a welcome to a new world of procurement excellence.
The 6 learners who were awarded the CIPS Advanced Practitioners Certificate are:
· Sian Dunn of Transnet Pipelines
· Bertrand du Plessis of Transnet Freight Rail
· Zondi Maswanganyi of Transnet Rail Engineering
· JohnTandy of Transnet Rail Engineering
· Raj Ramlaul formerly of Transnet Corporate
· Karen van der Merwe of Transnet Corporate