I would say most procurement organisations particularly in Rwanda, are mid way between Strategic and Tactical. There are aspects of strategic procurement but procurement is still not seen as a strategic function in institutions as there is still low visibility of the function. It is seldom part of top management and it is still seen as a support function.
The procurement function should be more strategic to the organisation as a whole as it should work closely with the finance department to help understand line items on the expense sheet and it should provide support for other units like IT, marketing, operations and engineering to help understand buyer patterns in the market place. How does it operate in your own organisation?
By knowing when to apply certain strategic procurement practices in lieu of tactical ones on a situation specific basis, procurement professionals are well positioned to deliver peak performance. Of utmost importance in developing an effective procurement organisation that delivers continuous value to the business is the constant search to transform your organisation’s level of sophistication from tactical to a more strategic focus.
The following are the top ten procurement dimensions that compliment a procurement organisation’s ability to achieve maximum results. Knowing when and how to move an initiative along the continuum from tactical to strategic is critical to achieving optimal results; (Procurement Strategy, Tools and Technology, Source-to-Pay Process, Organizational Structure Alignment, Category Management and Spend Management, Supplier Relationship Management, Culture and Change Management, Contract Management, Inventory Management and Risk Mitigation).
As these vital “building blocks” of procurement infrastructure are put in place, the benefits derived will clearly be recognized throughout the organization and will provide momentum toward harnessing spend and ensuring supply at the best cost.
Procurement function in most organisation is tactical, as a support department, procurement ensure that there is seamless operations between the internal and external customer. Procurement over the time, has positioned itself in a strategic role, by active and proactive participation in negotiating process, budgeting, inventory management, etc. The world has come to realize that the role procurement either tactical or strategic cannot be under estimated.
I am happy to see what is happening in the procurement industries these days. Most industries are getting to know that procurement is the life wire of any successful industry and therefore uplifting it to the executive level. The best a wise company could do in order to reduce cost at no expense to quality and other deliverables, is to position procurement strategically. Hardly would you hear of any unit transformation except procurement. We are moving to the era of strategic sourcing. The responsibility is on us as professionals to prove our worth wherever we are so that that we are no CLERKS but chartered professionals by showcasing added values in our daily chores to the business so that they will stop seeing our duties as tactical.
Dear professionals, lets share our experience.
The author is a Procurement Specialist