CIPS SM Awards – the morning after the night before

Miranda Hart watches as Shirley Cooper congratulates Lisa Callow, Young Purchaser of the Year

It was another successful evening on Wednesday at the CIPS Supply Management awards, with BravoSolution as lead sponsor (and support also from American Express, RS, QinetiQ Commerce Decisions and Hays). We published the list of winners here, and you can see they covered a good spread of organisations, although there weren't many major multinationals in there, and the public sector had a good year generally.

I've picked up a bit of comment (see our previous post) on the Olympic Delivery Authority winning the overall award. I must admit some surprise - I think they've done a great job, but so much of the actual delivery of the major construction programme was done by CLM, their private sector delivery partner. I thought that might count against them in the judging for the top award - and a couple of the other category winners sounded outstanding.

However, you could certainly argue that the use of CLM was innovative in its own right. Also, let's not forget that many thought the Olympic construction would be late and / or over budget; it has turned out to be neither. In fact it is ahead of schedule and under budget, a pretty remarkable achievement. And of course it was a serious and knowledgeable panel of judges so I'm sure it was a well-considered decision.

You can see a Supply Management video of an interview with ODA here*. 

So what about the less serious side of things? The food was very good, given they were catering for over 1,100 people. And the Front Covers, led by David Smith (chair of the judges, who opened the event with a short and perfectly pitched speech), were, I thought, better than ever.

Whether it is down to personnel changes in the band I don't know, but I thought there was a bit more of a "rock" edge to them last night, with "Song 2" by Blur for instance sounding great and causing an outbreak of CPO pogoing! Not a pretty sight... (OK, yes, I was somewhat involved personally in that..) And well done to the two backing vocalists, Andy Jackson and Tricia Troth from Government Procurement Service in London, who fitted in superbly and really added to the sound - having had very limited time to practice.

And if anyone has any pictures of the band, please could you email them to me at

And to finish, here's a few questions...

Who was the silver-haired charmer from a major broadcasting organisation who caught Miranda Hart's eye? (She was very funny about her predilection for middle-aged men!)

Which guest found that he'd packed two smart black shoes - but from different pairs - and was seem rushing into Oxford Street at 6.30pm to purchase a matching pair?

Who pulled a move on the dance floor in an attempt to impress a CIPS ex President and finished on his back?

Which sponsor was described by Ms Hart and "looking like he should be in a boy band" when he went up to hand over a prize?

Which all male table (bad planning guys) spent much of the evening trying to match female guests on adjacent tables with their names from the programme?

And finally.. who offered me a place in their luxury Teepee at the next Glastonbury Festival (well, when I say "offered"....)

(*Can I suggest next time that the interviewer doesn't make it quite so obvious she's reading the questions from a bit of paper...)


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Voices (3)

  1. Final Furlong:

    You make a good point Peter re ODA (it was my comment).

    Still if you propose a budget to win the mandate from the IOC (that budget being under just £3 billion) and then increase your budget to over £9 billion) then my mum could’ve bought it and delivered the Olympics on time and under budget. It’s one of the most expensive stadiums ever built and most of it was going to disappear (reduced to 25,000 seats) post-Olympics. It will now be largely ‘redeveloped’ into a (Championship) football stadium. And let’s not forget the Aquatics Centre. Original budget just over £90 million – built for £250 million (and still on time).

    There were other public sector buyers in the running who have delivered a lot more value-for-money for a lot less.

    Moan over….

  2. Watcher of the Skies:

    I’m overwhelmed by the gut-wrenching passion on display in the winner’s interview. *wipes tear*

    “Celebrate, good times…come on….let’s have a celebration….We’re gonna have a good time tonight……”

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