Procurement events of 2014 – our crystal ball predicts… (part 2)

Continuing our gaze into the Spend Matters crystal ball for 2014...


  • SAP / Ariba announces that their network is now so large it can be soon from the moon. The US authorities misunderstand and demand that SAP release all data currently stored on the moon as it may have security implications.
  • Horsemeat is discovered in beef burgers again.  Cat remains are discovered in dog food, steak sold as horsemeat in France is found to be zebra, and dog food is found to contain – no, let’s not go there.  82 % of the population are now vegetarians.  Supply Management magazine runs an article saying supply chain risk is a really important issue and everyone nods in agreement but nothing actually changes.


  • A major consulting firm issues a 657 page hard copy report to all its 10,000 clients claiming that procurement related fraud has declined considerably in the last 12 months.  A whistleblower then discloses that the author of the report  was bribed by the printing firm.
  • The changes in NHS competition law lead to 73 private sector healthcare firms taking legal action against CCGs, whilst many CCGs are now pursuing claims for damages with Trusts. Trusts are suing Bruce Forsyth – not for any particular reasons, but someone said it might be a good idea.


  • At the SM CIPS Awards,  CIPS retaliates after the Procurement Leaders new category innovation (see April) with a category for the “Best Award for a Best Procurement Awards Event”.  The winner is the CIPS Supply Management Award for the best Procurement Event Award.
  • The latest P2P software from Coupa is so smart it actually knows what the user needs before they even get to work, orders it and delivers it to their desk for arrival. Anyone trying to buy off-contract receives a small electric shock – delivered via a cloud based wifi system directly to the cerebral cortex.


  • After the huge success of the CIPS Licence to Practise initiative, the Institute of Barristas announces a campaign to promote the idea that no-one will be allowed to make coffee without a coffee-making licence. “This is a dangerous and challenging task. We don’t think it is appropriate that millions of people – in homes, offices and other premises – are risking the health and safety of themselves and others every day” says their President, the CEO of Starbucks.
  • The courts come to a grinding halt as a UK wide shortage of lawyers bites – 73 % of all qualified legal professionals are engaged with various actions and claims around the workings of the NHS competition policy.


  • With 20,000 staff, Crown Commercial Service is now the largest employer in Liverpool. The mayor opens their new office complex and the BT Arena is booked for the staff Xmas party.
  • BravoSolution open another new office in Antarctica. “We think it is time that penguins got to use the best in sourcing and analytics software”, shivers their MD. “Their current practices are basic, to say the least”.


  • The Institute of Cloakroom Attendants (whose members work in toilets situated in hotels, restaurants and similar locations) calls for legislation to support their policy that only licensed attendants should be allowed to run a sink full of hot water, prepare a fluffy towel and make sure the bowl for the tip is in place. “This is difficult, vital work”, says their Chief Attendant.
  • Francis Maude is replaced as Minster for the Cabinet Office by Eric Pickles in a reshuffle. Pickles quickly announces he will save hundreds of millions of pounds by closing down the Crown Commercial Service and returning responsibility for procurement to departments.  “I’ve never seen owt as daft in ’t entire life” he says.  “Eeh by gum, yon Maude must ‘ave been at ‘t ale again”!

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Voices (2)

  1. Procurement monkey:

    … and on Christmas Eve reports came in regarding the disappearance of a well known Procurement commenator travelling back from a local gig. According to police, residents reported scuffles in the dead of night and a white van bearing a blue circular logo heading at high speed from the scene. Police are baffled regarding a motive, with the only forensic evidence a discarded membership card bearing an ID with the last three digits ‘007’. Coincidentally, neighbours also reported a discarded box of unused licence certificates strewn over local fields when walking their dogs early the following morning.

    Merry Christmas!

  2. Derek Lancaster:

    Peter, you are a shining gem in the industry! well observed and very funny.

    Have a great Christmas

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