Afternoon Coffee: California bill to make companies treat gig workers as employees; Annual metals forecast outlook report out now; Peter Smith publishes another book!

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California’s State Senate passed a bill that mandates companies such as Uber and Lyft begin treating their workers as employees, the New York Times reports. This could have impacts in other states, notably New York, Alaska and Oregon, which have already begun dealing with how to classify gig workers as employees for “narrow purposes.”

“A critical question is how gig economy companies will react to California’s new law,” according to the Times article. “Industry officials have estimated that having to rely on employees rather than contractors raises costs by 20 to 30 percent.”

Look for upcoming Spend Matters analysis on this issue in our Contingent Workforce & Services coverage.

MetalMiner’s 2020 Annual Outlook Report, Insights platform hot off the digital press

Spend Matters sister site MetalMiner just launched two landmark resources for a key segment of direct materials buyers.

“Arriving just in time for budgeting season,” the 2020 Annual Buying Outlook report “contains the unique insight, analysis and tools you need as a metal buyer or manufacturer to know when and how to make buying decisions — including expected average prices, plus support and resistance levels,” according to the release post. (You can check out a free sample copy of the report at the link.)

“The Annual Outlook … includes coverage of commodities markets, industrial metals markets and key price drivers for aluminum, copper, nickel, lead, zinc, tin and steel (HRC, CRC, HDG and plate),” according to the post. “By understanding these price drivers, you can pinpoint exact price levels and make the appropriate changes to your sourcing strategy for that particular metal. You will be also be able to react when the market gives clear signs that a new trend is developing and stay hedged as long as that trend lasts.”

The site also launched the MetalMiner Insights platform, which “combines metal prices with forecasting, buying recommendations, and data analysis capability (correlation modeling)” — something “no other market intelligence firm can provide” — offering metal-buying companies of all sizes the ability to identify optimal sourcing strategies for industrial metals.

Companies unable to track conflict minerals in supply chain

A study by the U.S. Government Accountability Office as reported by Bloomberg Law has shown many companies were having a problem following minerals found in their products, from cell phones to cars, that can fuel conflict in central Africa. An estimated 61% of companies reported to regulators in 2018 that they couldn’t confirm where the minerals came from, up from 47% in the previous year. Companies cited difficulties accessing suppliers and tracking the complex chain from mines to processing facilities.

Peter Smith publishes ‘A Procurement Compendium’

Peter Smith, our good friend and, until this year, MD of Spend Matters UK/Europe, is celebrating his latest book release — called “A Procurement Compendium.”

“It is an anthology of all aspects of working within the world of procurement, is a fine read, interesting, sometimes funny, but most of all, very informative for all procurement leaders and practitioners,” writes Nancy Clinton, SMUK/Europe’s editor.

Sounds like Peter to us!

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