Deloitte’s View: Getting Past What Doesn’t Work in Procurement Talent Management

We are continuing to feature excerpts and analysis from Deloitte’s recently published paper: Procurement Talent Management: Exceptional Outcomes Require Exceptional People. Today, we explore Deloitte’s observations on what hasn’t worked in the past in procurement talent management and how to get beyond it.

"Let’s start with what doesn’t work (at least in isolation). Procurement organizations often pursue various initiatives to strengthen talent management. These include creating a center-led procurement organization, developing specific reporting structures, training and enhancing skills and enabling category management. Launched as individual activities, these initiatives can be hit or miss, wasting both time and resources. However, if they’re accompanied by efforts to foster a talent-centric culture, gain executive buy-in and secure needed funding, they can help produce lasting procurement impact."

The above is largely taken with Deloitte’s analysis. Essentially what Deloitte is arguing here is that procurement talent management, as nearly every organization has looked at it in the past, is all but a failure waiting to happen. Such areas as centralized structures and skills development are as effective as throwing darts at a board to see what will actually stick.

Take a step back for a minute and consider the implications of these observations. Fostering successful talent within a procurement organization requires pursuing specific activities separate from following the standard guidebook to elevating procurement efficiency and effectiveness including separate initiatives specific to “upping” the talent game.

In short, better talent is not an outgrowth of procurement transformation or anything of the sort. Better talent comes from dedicating specific effort to looking at the talent challenge in isolation.

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