On Thursday 22nd November, we co-hosted a Procurement Leadership Dinner with Proxima at the fantastic Kings Street Townhouse in Manchester. The event was attended by a number of influential procurement professionals spanning a diverse mix of industry sectors and backgrounds.
We were thrilled to have Rob Woodstock as guest speaker. Rob is the Chief Commercial Officer at HMRC and chaired the discussion which covered a number of pressing areas for procurement around supplier innovation and the implications of Brexit. We debated the ability to innovate and how best to position procurement as a key enabler for disruptive innovation within a business. This is seen as a key focal point for procurement, as the function with the most extensive reach, both externally and internally within a business. As an increasing number of organisations seek a competitive advantage, procurement is pivotal in identifying and developing suppliers, big and small, and entering a true partnership approach through the sharing of data, trends and market insight – although there was a cautious tone about the implications of IP.
Despite the news filtering through around the Withdrawal Agreement, it was evidently clear that we still face a challenging, uncertain and unchartered future, with businesses in general taking a cautious approach. However, as a function, there was a more positive tone, with many seeing this as an opportunity for procurement to really take a key role during these uncertain times. It was also fascinating to understand the implications when assessing the risk and readiness of the guests’ suppliers, and what the implications of Brexit may mean for the Tier 2 and 3 supply chains.