Procurement Buzzwords – Just What Is “Spaving”?

There was an interesting and helpful article on our US site last week. I thought when I saw the title “Procurement Buzzwords of 2015” - is was going to be a humourous item, but actually it is useful rather than jokey. Kaitlyn McAvoy looks at some of the most used buzzwords / topics written about on the SM site during 2015, including;

- Work Intermediation Platforms

- Contingent, Independent & Freelance Workforces

- Vendor Management System

- Spaving

- Guided Buying

Bet you’re wondering what “spaving” means, eh? It is linked to “spending to save”, so if we buy something that has list price of £1,000 for just £200 we have “saved” £800, right? But what if the purchase was not really needed at all, or a perfectly good alternative was available at £100?

That’s the sort of issue Pierre Mitchell discusses in the excellent articles he has written on this topic, discussing how we sometimes fall into these traps in procurement – you can find the links to his thoughts via Kaitlyn’s Buzzwords article.

In the meantime, we’ve been trying to think what buzzwords we would really like to see eliminated from the procurement world in 2016. “Soft skills” is beginning to annoy me a bit because of over / inappropriate usage. (I’m not sure attributes such as tenacity, independence or imagination are particularly “soft” in any sense). “Procurement licence to practice”… that speaks for itself. But not in a good way.

I’m sure there are more, although we are probably not quite as bad as certain other professions and functions in terms of getting obsessed by buzzwords. And here is the useful Wall Street Journal automatic buzzword generator in case you are running out of suitable nonsense!

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