Afternoon Coffee: Global SRM, Supply Chain Security, E-Mail Time Suck, Public Procurement Spending

Advice for buyers and suppliers.
Get a grip on the supply chain squeeze -- The fallout from the global economic downturn in 2008 put a strain on many business relationships. Normal credit deadlines were stretched, often without warning, and larger businesses were putting pressure on suppliers to permanently increase these deadlines by an extra 30 or 60 days, or further reduce the discount on goods. Typically, if one link in the supply chain is affected, this will usually affect the other links as well. For example, a delayed payment from the end customer to their supplier can often mean payment delays to suppliers further down the chain.

Data security.
Integrity of data passed between hardware, software, and information suppliers will be a key security issue by 2017, research firm says -- Enterprise IT supply chains will be targeted and compromised, forcing changes in the structure of the IT marketplace, according to a study published Thursday by Gartner Inc. By 2017, IT supply chain integrity will be identified as a top three security-related concern by Global 2000 IT leaders, Gartner said in a summary of its supply chain security report. Gartner defines supply chain integrity as "the process of managing an organization's internal capabilities, as well as its partners and suppliers, to ensure all elements of an integrated solution are of high assurance." The IT supply chain includes internally developed applications, as well as those supplied by third parties, the research firm says.

Time to move away from email??
Email Takes Up 28% of Workers' Time -- More than a quarter of the average worker's day is spent answering and reading emails, according to a new survey. McKinsey Global Institute and International Data Corp. found that email is the second-most time-consuming activity for workers, next to "role-specific tasks." The consultant claims that time spent on email can be cut by 25%-30% by introducing social networking communications into a business. Doing so would free up 7% to 8% more of the workweek for other tasks. Assuming an eight-hour day, that translates to about two hours, 14 minutes a day spent on emails.

"Evidence suggests many countries do not collate basic data such as who spends public money, with whom and on what."
$3.5tn global spend on local procurement 'woefully' mismanaged -- How much does local government spend on procurement globally? In the US, I estimate that the public sector procurement spend by and within states amounts to some $1.5tn a year. This is around 70% of total US public sector spend. Yet in the UK, some of this expenditure – such as spending by universities and higher education institutions – would bot be recognised as a local government cost. Here in the UK, local government expenditure accounts for the equivalent of approximately US$80bn, just under 25% of total UK public sector spend. In other countries such as Indonesia, Poland, Australia and South Africa, much government procurement spend is delegated to local government.

- Sheena Moore

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