Our first sourcing debate – the ‘ayes’ have it

Many thanks to everyone who came to our first Spend Matters Sourcing Debate last night. Particular thanks to the excellent speakers, to Intenda for sponsoring the drinks, and jCatalog for picking up the bill for the food!

The motion was “This (public) house believes that cost reduction should NOT be the CPO’s top priority”.

The double negative nature of the motion caused a little confusion but it was passed by a small majority.  Professor Andrew Cox, supported by David Smith, argued against the motion, explaining that the reality of the situation for most procurement people is still that cost reduction is at the heart of what they do and that should be recognised.

But the counter argument, put forward by Jason Busch and supported by Kim Godwin, suggested that procurement should take a wider view, including looking for supplier innovation (Jason used a bottle of Heinz ketchup as very as a convincing example). That won the day after some excellent debate and questions from the floor.

I'm not sure our speakers really disagreed that much, but they all spoke very eloquently; we're going to feature the arguments at greater length here in a few days time (and don't forget it was yesterday's Question of the Week).  Everyone seemed to enjoy the evening, thanks again to the speakers and indeed everyone who came along, and we plan to do it again.

And tonight Jason and I will be having a beer in the downstairs bar (assuming it's open, ground floor if not) at the Pontefract Castle on Wigmore Street between 5.30 and 7.30.  You're very welcome to join us if you would like to say 'hello'.

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