Down the Procurement Pub with Unilever, BravoSolution, twago and Isaac Gracie

I had a beer with an old friend (who wished to remain anonymous) at the excellent Kings Arms near Waterloo this week. I forgot to take picture of a beer but remembered as we were leaving so here is the documentary evidence of our visit at least! Great choice of beer as usual but can't remember what I had, not because I had too much but simply because the memory is going  ...

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It’s always good to see a positive story about the relationship between marketing and procurement, so we enjoyed this brief piece from The Drum, looking at developments in Unilever and talking to Jeremy Basset from the organisation. It gives a good snapshot of the sort of steps procurement can take to add value to the internal customer, not be seen as a blocker.  “When it comes to start-ups, we realised we needed a different approach and different processes to make the whole thing easier,” Basset told The Drum. “We worked with procurement to simplify the way start-ups were brought on board, we also shortened the payment terms to make sure it was more acceptable for start-ups to be working with us and we worked with legal to make the contracting process easier as well.”

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twago (the lower case is deliberate) is one of the growing array of “work intermediation platforms” and claims to be the leading platform for online work in Europe. The firm was founded in Berlin – “Europe’s new digital mecca” apparently, in 2009. Anyway, the firm has just published its 2015 Freelancer Report, although we wouldn’t call it a report frankly – it is a series of data sets based on the jobs filled through their site, with a bit of commentary, and published on their website here. (So no “report” in a pdf document sense). But it is nonetheless interesting – it ranks Madrid as the top freelancer city in Europe, then Berlin and Barcelona. But the absence of London from the list may well be more due to twago’s limited UK presence than anything else.

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Final call – don’t forget next week’s BravoSolution Real World Procurement session on Wednesday April 13th at 11am when Guy Allen will be leading on the topic "Driving Value From Your Sourcing Process". The last few tickets are available here and remember CIPS members can get a 50% discount on the already very reasonable fee. (To access that, please email events@bravosolution.com and to get your CIPS booking code.)  Guy will be explaining why the "usual" sourcing processes used by most organizations are failing to get the most out of the market - and how can you use competitive pressure to obtain more value.

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Another one of our ones to watch in the music world - Isaac Gracie.  Nobody had heard of him till his bedroom-recorded "Last Words" got a lot of attention last year. We've been waiting for more, and now he has released his first "EP" and done some live performances. Lovely voice - in the Hozier / Leonard Cohen / Jeff Buckley / James Taylor space by the sound of it?

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