Spend Matters 50/50: ISM – A Provider to Know in 2015

100 companies - 100 days

We announced here and here our two (not ranked) lists: Spend Matters 50 To Know and 50 To Watch firms for 2015/2016. In the first case, this is our view of the 50 solution provider type organisations in the procurement industry that every senior procurement leader should be aware of and understand. The 50 To Watch are the up-and-coming firms  - those with interesting and relatively new solutions for our market. The 50 To Know are the key organisations in our industry that procurement executives need to have on their radar.

Having announced the lists, our US colleagues are now featuring each of the 100 firms in turn with an article giving an overview of each, with some headline Spend Matters thoughts on them. So on this site we will be giving you a brief extract of the US article, plus adding our own comments where we have anything useful to add from a European perspective. Sometimes we do, sometimes we don’t!

Here is what our US colleagues had to say about ISM.

"ISM is the de facto standard of procurement industry associations in the US. The 48,000-member-strong organization is expanding its reach into broader supply chain management and outside of the US through its affiliates such as those in Japan and China. ISM is best known for its professional credentialing standard: the CPSM (a successor to the CPM designation) and offers training and related services to help professionals get certified and also generally up skill themselves. ISM also released its new Master Model to help professionals self-assess themselves on 85 criteria to help guide them in closing competency gaps."

There's more here on what our US colleagues have to say, however, in the UK and Europe, ISM is eclipsed by CIPS, which themselves are part of our 50 to Know. The two giant Institutes don't compete really on each other's home territories, although in other parts of the world they do. CIPS has probably come out on top in more regions, being dominant in China, Africa and the Middle East (compared to ISM). Continental Europe is home to many smaller Institutes, and neither CIPS nor ISM have made serious inroads.

Here is a final thought. What are the odds that ISM and CIPS will merge within my lifetime? Pretty good, I suspect.

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