Afternoon Coffee: Deloitte launches CPO survey; How to win the war for contractor talent in manufacturing (free webinar); Fairmarkit raises $11M

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Deloitte, in association with (and with input from) Spend Matters, released their annual CPO report today, titled "Global Chief Procurement Officer Survey 2019." The report focuses on the complex role that CPOs now face, including "emerging economic and political risks in every direction they turn — and they feel pressured to cut costs along the way," according to the release page. Readers can begin getting a fuller sense of the report's findings here.

Much more to come on the 2019 CPO survey from the entire Spend Matters team, so stay tuned!

New Webinar: The War for Contractor Talent in Manufacturing

MetalMiner Executive Editor and Azul Partners CEO Lisa Reisman will walk through how companies can (and should) address the talent gap, on a free webinar tomorrow, Thursday October 24 at 11 am CT / 12 pm ET, titled “The War For Contractor Talent: How Manufacturers Can Find the Workers They Need (and Fast).”

Matthew Runfola, Executive Director and Founder of the Chicago Industrial Design Center will discuss what he sees as the “skills gap” in creating a workforce suitable for today’s manufacturing environment, according to the registration page. Reisman and Runfola will also be joined by Brett Armstrong, Director of Business Development from Avetta, who will discuss “how manufacturing organizations can find 100% compliant contractors quickly and easily, mitigating risk, increasing productivity and improving the sales cycle as well.”

Register to attend the free webinar right here.

Fairmarkit raises $11 million Series A

Tail spend management software solution provider Fairmarkit announced it has raised $11 million in Series A round funding, and will primarily "use this new investment to address the growing demand from Fortune 500 companies for its AI-powered spend management technology," according to the press release.

"Fairmarkit has new job opportunities throughout the company, including product development, customer success, and marketing," the release stated. "The company will also use this investment to expand its product suite in partnership with its customer advisory board that includes procurement leaders from companies such as The Andersons Inc., Univision, ServiceNow, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City."

U.S. companies in for long haul with China trade war

A top official of the U.S.-China Business Council has said U.S. companies were girding themselves against the trade battle with China which is bound to extend beyond the current trade talks, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

“When we talk to companies, there’s a realization that no matter what happens with this trade deal, we’re going down a trajectory of a much more confrontational relationship with China that’s very unlikely to shift in the opposite direction in the future,” Jacob Parker, vice-president of China operations for the council, said during a panel discussion in the conference organized by the Association for Financial Professionals, according to the WSJ.

(Our sister site MetalMiner has been saying this for years. Check out their Trade Resource Center for deeper dives on U.S.-China trade.)

Hasbro the latest "victim" of ongoing trade war

In keeping with the “war” theme, toymaker Hasbro is the latest U.S. company to find itself at the receiving end of the ongoing trade war with China. Shares of the company dropped Tuesday after it revealed that the tariff war had majorly disrupted its supply chain and led to confusion among customers for its toys, according to an Associated Press report. There could also be a price hike coming as the company offsets rising costs, the report stated.

Defense Secretary recuses himself from Pentagon's JEDI contract

Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper on Tuesday recused himself from a review of the Pentagon’s Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud computing contract as his son was employed with one of the initial bidders. A report in the Washington Post quoting a Defense Department spokesman Jonathan Hoffman as saying the review will now be handled by Deputy Defense Secretary David Norquist “out of an abundance of caution.”

Retail supply chains may not be able to cope with  holiday season demand

A new report, 'The 2020 State of Retail Supply Chain' by logistics analyst EyeforTransport says the supply chain capabilities of retailers will not be able to cope with the changing landscape, according to theloadstar.com. It warns that the sector needs “to step up its game” to meet challenges in forecasting, visibility, reaction capability and system integration.

A report by Deloitte has predicted that the U.S. retail sector would see sales overtake the 2018 peak season by between 4% and 4.5%, with sales between November and January to exceed $1.1 trillion.

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