If only we had the time..

If we all lived for ever, and time wasn’t an issue, it would be good to go through our entire supplier portfolio, supplier by supplier, and really look at whether they were organisations with whom we really want to do business.

Do their values mesh with our own? Do they have the right capability, competence, attitude and capacity to do what we want them to do? If we had the time, we would go through this in some detail, particularly for those suppliers who supply key materials or carry out critical, sensitive or high risk work for us.

But we don’t live forever, which is just as well given the queues at Heathrow already. So we can’t check our supply base to the level that would be ideal, and we have to rely  on processes such as supplier qualification and risk management. Our aim is for these processes to take us as close as possible to the ideal state of that “perfect” supply base.

Yet pre-qualification processes, a key element of this, are still something of a Cinderella topic in the procurement world.  But given their central role in helping us arrive at that (hopefully) high-performing supply base, they are actually a potential source of advantage to the organisation if done well. And they can be a driver of real competitive disadvantage if they’re not fit for purpose!

We’re about to publish a research paper on this very topic, snappily titled “Is your supplier selection process a source of competitive disadvantage?”

It will be available here to download from next week, and we’ll be launching it at our executive breakfast with Achilles next Wednesday, July 11th at the Savoy hotel.

There are a few places left, so if you’d like to hear me expanding more on what should be an important subject for all procurement professionals, please contact Dan Quinn asap on dan.quinn@Achilles.com

(The presentation will have a private sector slant, I should add).  Do hope to see some of you there...

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