How Procurement Professionals Can Add Value to Business Performance: Embracing Change

Many thanks to Gerard Chick, chief knowledge officer, Optimum Procurement Group, for providing us with this interesting and well received series on how procurement professionals can add value to business performance. In his final post in the series he looks at embracing change. 

Procurement will always have a very bright future, of that much I am sure. However, how procurement as a discrete function will operate in the future remains uncertain. Clearly, businesses will still care about managing spend but will they have a large, enterprise-level function dedicated to doing it? Probably not!

Procurement’s bright future may actually mean a change of focus to more entrepreneurial, brand-conscious, skilled analysts with a bimodal capability.

Moving forward, procurement professionals will need increased business acumen and the ability to make sound commercial decisions. Knowledge and intelligence development are key to gaining competitive advantage and developing capability in our rapidly changing world. Procurement professionals must become focused ‘students of their own industry;’ respected across the business, collaborative, influential, persuasive and visionary.

With access to so much knowledge and intelligence, the function will progress from decision support to decision delegation and, ultimately, to a predictive capability. As the world begins to work differently, we see a different kind of supply management emerging.

Are you ready to embrace change?

  1. Do you have a plan to build and develop talent within the function?
  2. Are you focusing on prioritising and assessing skill set and evaluating people to ensure they fit the role?
  3. Do you understand the balance between procurement expertise and commercial acumen?
  4. Are you deliberately developing eclectic teams who can build trust and operate across traditional boundaries?

If you have missed any posts that make up this series - you can catch up and read them as a whole by following these links:

How Procurement Professionals Can Add Value to Business Performance:

Shared Concern Around Risk

Sustainability and Diversity

Aligning with Customer Demand

Intelligent Cost Reduction Strategies

Some Further Thoughts


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First Voice

  1. Sigi Osagie:

    Gerard raises many valid points here. I particularly share the view that Procurement folks need to become more business-minded and conscious of the ‘Procurement brand’.

    Successfully making these shifts in mindset and perspective will increasingly be some of the key factors differentiating those Procurement functions that achieve sustainable success and the laggards.

    Sigi Osagie
    Author, “Procurement Mojo – Strengthening the Function and Raising Its Profile” (

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