Optimising purchasing costs remains the priority of purchasing departments but the goalposts have moved. They have moved so far that we can already see a new and more ambitious role emerging for purchasing: that of a strategic business partner. In some businesses, the purchasing department seems to play the role of a solution finder and contribute to the value offered and the promise made to customers.
The purchasing function is evolving into a position of influence, contributing all the facts and figures to guide the business to reaching the most profitable decision. But such a position requires high standards and skills, which are clearly not widespread in most purchasing departments. This is one of the main challenges for the purchasing function over the next few years.
How BearingPoint brings value
Employees in the purchasing department are becoming more experienced and better qualified. 60% of them have more than five years experience and 68% have a high level degree.
Considering resources’ purchasing skills in order to consistently align market requirements and people career development willingness, while ensuring complete involvement and motivation, is key in an efficient purchasing organisation. Indeed, maintaining and improving purchasing skills to anticipate key business issues and supplier market evolution is a factor of competitiveness. Purchasing departments are setting targets in terms of mission and responsibilities. To make it happen, the mandatory next step is to create a skills development programme. BearingPoint can assist you on this ‘sensitive’ topic by building accurate development programmes. The main outcomes are in-house mentoring, learning by doing and re-enforcement of the sourcing community to better fulfill the purchasing mission.