Friday, August 29, 2008

Purch-lympics Winners Announced!

After a successful two weeks of voting, the winners of the Purch-lympics have been determined!

I'd like to personally thank all of the purchasing and supply management professionals that submitted essays as well as all of the people around the world who took the time to read the essays and vote.

So here are our winners...

The "Gold Medal"


Name: G.P Thushara Sampath Gunasekara
Country: Sri Lanka
Essay Topic: Increasing Supplier Competition
Prize: A full scholarship to earn the SPSM® Certification (valued at $1,149 USD)





The "Silver Medal"


Name: John Ransom
Country: United States of America
Essay Topic: Evaluating Vendor Viability
Prize: Enrollment in one of Next Level Purchasing's full-length supply chain online classes (valued at $209 USD)





The "Bronze Medal"


Name: Sandi Derouin
Country: Canada
Essay Topic: Fixing Internal Customer Errors
Prize: The "Supply Management in The Real World" eBook (valued at $79 USD)




I would also like to congratulate our other finalists Leonard Ruhukwa and Denise Minnich. Though we didn't plan it, I'd like to award them a prize as well for being finalists. They will each get an enrollment to our online mini-course "Negotiation No-No's," valued at $14.99 (USD).

Finally, I would like to give the Charles' Choice Awards to a few participants who I personally felt had great essays, but didn't garner enough votes to make it to the finals. The Charles' Choice Awards will also award an enrollment to Negotiation No-No's and will go to:

Evans Mudake

Bizerka Oreskovic

Daniel Haakuria

Abdul Khan

Lynn Hoover

Anthony Napoli


Finally, I'd like to thank Sourcing Innovation and Supply Excellence for covering the Purch-lympics in the blogosphere and I'd like to thank you for watching this exciting series. Be sure to check the Purchasing Certification Blog regularly for more exciting stuff in the near future. You can even subscribe to this blog to get new posts by email.

Have a great weekend, a great Labor Day (in the USA), and a great Labour Day (in Canada)!

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Purch-lympics Finals Have Begun. Vote Now!

After an interesting five days of semi-finals, we now have our daily winners from around the world who are competing in the Purch-lympics final round!

While there are no actual medals being awarded for the Purch-lympics, there are three prizes for the best purchasing and supply management essays as determined by votes by readers like you:

- The "Gold Medal" - A full scholarship to earn the SPSM® Certification (valued at $1,149) awarded to the finalist with the highest number of votes.

- The "Silver Medal" - Enrollment in one of Next Level Purchasing's full-length supply chain online classes (valued at $209) awarded to the finalist with the second highest number of votes.

- The "Bronze Medal" - The "Supply Management in The Real World" eBook (valued at $79) awarded to the finalist with the third highest number of votes.


So here's what you do:

1. Simply click the links below to read each essay.

2. Use the "Click here to vote" link to submit your vote. Voting will be open until 11:45PM Eastern US time on August 28, 2008.

3. Send the link http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/blog to your purchasing and supply management colleagues and encourage them to vote.

4. Track the progress of voting throughout the competition by frequently returning to this page and clicking here.

5. We will announce the official winner on Friday August 29, 2008 right here on this blog.

There is only one vote allowed per person. We have the ability to track the source of each and every vote and, if ballot stuffing is discovered, we will either remove duplicate votes or disqualify the candidate at our discretion.

So without further ado, here are the essays competing in this final round of the Purch-lympics...

Sandi Derouin (Canada) – Topic: Fixing Internal Customer Errors

John Ransom (United States of America) – Topic: Evaluating Vendor Viability

Leonard Ruhukwa (Zimbabwe) – Topic: Supplier Relationships

Denise Minnich (United States of America) – Topic: Obtaining Emergency Vendor Service

G.P Thushara Sampath Gunasekara (Sri Lanka) – Topic: Increasing Supplier Competition


CLICK HERE TO VOTE

Also, if you crave educational material on purchasing and supply management and aren't already a subscriber, join our FREE Purchasing Resources Program.

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At

http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Purch-lympics Finals Start August 27!

Well, we made it through the five fun days of the Purch-lympics semi-finals and we have our five finalists ready to compete for your votes! Check back on Wednesday August 27 or Thursday August 28 to vote for the purchasing essay that you like best!

If you would like to be reminded to return here, it's simple. We are now offering an email subscription to this blog. Just click here to fill out a form and subscribe!

You'll get notified by email whenever there is a new post on this blog. And my next post will be an announcement of the Purch-lympics finalists!

(NOTE: If you're reading this after 8:45AM Eastern US time on August 27 but before 11:45PM on August 28, the finals have already started. Go to http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/blog to vote!)


To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Cost Containment

I hope that you have enjoyed the article "Does Cost Containment Have 2 C's Or 4?"

In the article, I give tips on how to achieve cost containment. I think that if we flip around the points a little bit and turn them into questions, you can have an assessment on whether or not your organization is truly focused on cost containment.

A self-assessment is important. I see a lot of companies say "Oh, we're struggling with rising prices." But what are they doing about it? Or, are they doing enough to combat inflation? Using these questions as an assessment will shed some light on that:

1. Is your spend adequately consolidated or are you still using too many suppliers in certain categories? (Or, even worse, do you not have any visibility into the number of suppliers you are using in each category?)

2. When you last sourced in high-spend categories, did you have a large number of bidders and allow newer, unfamiliar suppliers to be considered? Or did you invite the same cast of characters consisting of only three or four suppliers?

3. Do you have long-term contracts in place? If so, how much of your spend is covered under contract?

4. How closely do you work with your suppliers to identify improvement opportunities? Or do you just place orders and expect to get them in without any further expectations on your suppliers?

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Buyers Meeting Point Experiences Double-Digit Monthly Growth

I just had the chance to check out a new press release from Buyers Meeting Point, one of our sponsors. It appears that, despite the increasing proliferation of supply chain-related content on the Web, Buyers Meeting Point is growing its traffic nicely. Here is the full text of the press release...

Press Release
August 20, 2008
Buyers Meeting Point
Bridgewater, MA

Co-Founder, Cindy Allen-Murphy, discussed the concept of Buyers Meeting Point and their growth since March 2008.
"Buyers Meeting Point is a unique place on the World Wide Web for buying professionals from all kind of industries, profit and non-profit to learn, share and ultimately grow your knowledge, yourself and your business.

"There is an online environment provided where procurement professionals can meet; share ideas, exchange visions, business models, find answers to questions and much more. As part of this service, there is an opportunity to exchange and sell high-end knowledge for business improvement. The range of available knowledge areas is diverse, ranging from simple yet useful templates to direction setting strategy whitepapers."

Harco Bouwman, co-founder, stated yesterday “We are excited to see the growth of traffic on the site. It continues to grow at a rate of 10-15% per month. The more professionals that visit, the more information will be available for everyone to share. We like to encourage that so we can learn from each other and not have to reinvent the wheel. Registered users on the site have access to monthly newsletters, the forum for networking, network building via the “direct connect” functionality in the member area and many other features. The benefits are becoming evident as we monitor the growth of our user community”.


Buyers Meeting Point believes in better business for a better world and donates a significant part of the profit to Plan International, their global charity partner. This is a great compliment to their mission and strategy. Through that affiliation, Plan is supported in their work which contributes to the strength of future generations. As those children mature into adults, they become the workers, managers and leaders of businesses, schools and various organizations.

Buyers Meeting Point is unique as a global community hosted for procurement professionals. The company is based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands with a subsidiary in the United States, located in Boston.

(end of press release)

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Monday, August 25, 2008

Purch-lympics Semi-Finals, Day 5

Well, here we are already - at the last day of the Purch-lympics semi-finals! We've had some great entries so far and, today, you get to influence who the last of the five finalists will be.

As a reminder, public votes determine each day's winner. The five daily winners in the semi-finals will have their essays compete in the finals on August 27 and 28.

So here's what you do:

1. Simply click the links below to read each essay.

2. Use the "Click here to vote" link to submit your vote. Each day's voting will begin at 8:45AM Eastern US time and will be open until 11:45PM Eastern US time.

3. Send the link http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/blog to your purchasing and supply management colleagues and encourage them to vote.

4. Return here daily to vote.

There is only one vote allowed per person. We have the ability to track the source of each and every vote and, if ballot stuffing is discovered, we will either remove duplicate votes or disqualify the candidate at our discretion.

Here are today's essays...

Essay #1: David Ah-Tow (South Africa) - Topic: Obtaining Vendor Information

Essay #2: Denise Minnich (United States of America) - Topic: Obtaining Emergency Vendor Service

Essay #3: Yvetta Koleva (Bulgaria) - Topic: Negotiation

Essay #4: Kacwa Ronnie (Uganda) - Topic: Increasing Procurement Visibility

Essay #5: Antony Naploli (United States of America) - Topic: Internal Customer-Supplier Relations


CLICK HERE TO VOTE - (NOTE: If you are reading this after 11:45PM Eastern US time on August 25 and after 8:45AM on August 27, click here to vote on the latest entries.)

Here are links to the results from each day...

Day 1: http://www.surveymonkey.com/sr.aspx?sm=w4CO0woWuVTVcPwM7aK22MmHj7OkPpsaHIkNrvdI91A_3d

Day 2: http://www.surveymonkey.com/sr.aspx?sm=6oITK5akV8WpML0GHmYqzDMGSco1Glahh8XiFEt_2fh5o_3d

Day 3: http://www.surveymonkey.com/sr.aspx?sm=EZFJ0pTGQHlUcdZbIJurHZun7KiHhtBEm7GTM_2bI_2fBXk_3d

Day 4: http://www.surveymonkey.com/sr.aspx?sm=lJadQbW0sIKkXp0ryChAv_2bQPYvaZDVk_2bx_2bjklFpN9k8_3d

Day 5: http://www.surveymonkey.com/sr.aspx?sm=wW2cO_2bB5ny79lIdhBORFpuqiRr9a_2b8te58ZuVY102mc_3d


Also, if you crave educational material on purchasing and supply management and aren't already a subscriber, join our FREE Purchasing Resources Program.

Be sure to check back on Wednesday and Thursday for the final, deciding round of the Purch-lympics!

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Friday, August 22, 2008

Purch-lympics Semi-Finals, Day 4

Time flies when you're having fun...it is already the next-to-last day of the Purch-lympics! We've had some fine essays so far and we have five more today!

As a reminder, public votes determine each day's winner. The five daily winners in the semi-finals will have their essays compete in the finals on August 27 and 28.

So here's what you do:

1. Simply click the links below to read each essay.

2. Use the "Click here to vote" link to submit your vote. Each day's voting will begin at 8:45AM Eastern US time and will be open until 11:45PM Eastern US time.

3. Send the link http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/blog to your purchasing and supply management colleagues and encourage them to vote.

4. Return here daily to vote.

There is only one vote allowed per person. We have the ability to track the source of each and every vote and, if ballot stuffing is discovered, we will either remove duplicate votes or disqualify the candidate at our discretion.

Here are today's essays...

Essay #1: Alfred Onyango (Kenya) - Topic: Procurement Ethics

Essay #2: Sandi Derouin (Canada) - Topic: Fixing Internal Customer Errors

Essay #3: Lynn Hoover (United States of America) - Topic: Surviving A Supplier Catastrophe

Essay #4: Khin Aye Myint (Myanmar) - Topic: Sourcing and Sanctions

Essay #5: Burt Schilder (The Netherlands) - Topic: Implementing An ERP System


CLICK HERE TO VOTE - (NOTE: If you are reading this after 11:45PM Eastern US time on August 22 and after 8:45AM on August 25, click here to vote on the latest entries.)

Click here to see the results from this day.

Also, if you crave educational material on purchasing and supply management and aren't already a subscriber, join our FREE Purchasing Resources Program.


To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Purch-lympics Semi-Finals, Day 3

Wow - it's Day 3 of the Purch-lympics already! Today, we have six new essays competing.

As a reminder, public votes determine each day's winner. The five daily winners in the semi-finals will have their essays compete in the finals on August 27 and 28. So here's what you do:

1. Simply click the links below to read each essay.

2. Use the "Click here to vote" link to submit your vote. Each day's voting will begin at 8:45AM Eastern US time and will be open until 11:45PM Eastern US time.

3. Send the link http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/blog to your purchasing and supply management colleagues and encourage them to vote.

4. Return here daily to vote.

There is only one vote allowed per person. We have the ability to track the source of each and every vote and, if ballot stuffing is discovered, we will either remove duplicate votes or disqualify the candidate at our discretion.

Here are today's essays...

Essay #1: John Ransom (United States of America) - Topic: Evaluating Vendor Viability

Essay #2: Annette Opondo (Kenya) - Topic: Dealing With Internal Conflict

Essay #3: Daniel Haakuria (Namibia) - Topic: Improving Logistics

Essay #4: S.B. Odegha (Nigeria) - Topic: Proving Supply Chain's Sourcing Abilities

Essay #5: Mukut Roy (India) - Topic: Project Management

Essay #6: Abdul Khan (India) - Topic: Vendor Managed Inventory


CLICK HERE TO VOTE (NOTE: If you are reading this after 11:45PM Eastern US time on August 21, click here to vote on the latest entries.)

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Purch-lympics Semi-Finals, Day 2

So we have one successful day of the Purch-lympics behind us. On to Day 2 and five new essays!

As a reminder, public votes determine each day's winner. The five daily winners in the semi-finals will have their essays compete in the finals on August 27 and 28. So here's what you do:

1. Simply click the links below to read each essay.

2. Use the "Click here to vote" link to submit your vote. Each day's voting will begin at 8:45AM Eastern US time and will be open until 11:45PM Eastern US time.

3. Send the link http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/blog to your purchasing and supply management colleagues and encourage them to vote.

4. Return here daily to vote.


Essay #1: Evans Mudake (Kenya) - Topic: Implementing Payment Controls

Essay #2: G.P Thushara Sampath Gunasekara (Sri Lanka) - Topic: Increasing Supplier Competition

Essay #3: Enoch Dugbatey (Ghana) - Topic: Improving Cash Flow

Essay #4: Dylan Tao (Canada) - Topic: Switching Distribution Channels

Essay #5: Bizerka Oreskovic (Croatia) - Topic: Creative Logistics Solutions


CLICK HERE TO VOTE (NOTE: If you are reading this after 11:45PM Eastern US time on August 20, click here to vote on the latest entries.)

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Purch-lympics Semi-Finals, Day 1

Well, the Purch-lympics are here!

If you missed the earlier announcement, each business day from today through Monday August 25, we will link you to five or six essays submitted by purchasing and supply management professionals throughout the world. You will get to vote for one essay each day. The five daily winners, as determined by votes, will then have their essays competing in the finals on August 27 and 28. From these five finalists, voting will determine three winners: a "gold medal" winner, a "silver medal" winner, and a "bronze medal" winner. These winners will be announced August 29. The gold medal winner will receive a scholarship to the Senior Professional in Supply Management® Program, valued at $1,149 (US).

So here's what you do:

1. Simply click the links below to read each essay.

2. Use the "Click here to vote" link to submit your vote. Each day's voting will be open until 11:45PM Eastern US time.

3. Send the link http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/blog to your purchasing and supply management colleagues and encourage them to vote.

4. Return here daily to vote.

So let's get started!


Essay #1: Leonard Ruhukwa (Zimbabwe) - Topic: Supplier Relationships

Essay #2: Aung Kyaw Than (India) - Topic: Specification Errors

Essay #3: Grace Paddy Wanzala (Uganda) - Topic: Alternate Sources of Supply

Essay #4: Reybien Basto (Philippines) - Topic: Documentation

Essay #5: Jehu Selman Mamven (Nigeria) - Topic: Bidding


CLICK HERE TO VOTE (NOTE: voting for this day is now closed. Please see the current day's essays at http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com/blog and cast your vote at that link.)

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Monday, August 18, 2008

Suppliers' Role In Your Company's Survival

The Purch-lympics start tomorrow. It looks like this will be a lot of fun, with purchasing essays having been submitted from around the world.

Be sure to check this blog every day and vote for your purchasing peers.

Because this blog will be tied up with the Purch-lympics for most of the next two weeks, I wanted to add one non-Purch-lympics entry prior to then.

The most valuable thing that I think a purchasing and supply management professional can do for his or her career is to learn everything s/he can about purchasing and supply management. The second most valuable thing is to learn about senior management and, specifically, how senior management thinks.

I just read an excellent whitepaper called "Avoid Corporate Death: Nine Essential Elements Will Keep The Reaper From Your Company's Door" by fellow Pittsburgh supply chain blogger, Robert Rudzki. This whitepaper is really written for CEO's, but I believe that it can give non-C-level employees an insight into what makes their company's leadership tick.

An interesting section of the whitepaper talks about the value of getting an external assessment on how your company stacks up with regard to those "nine essential elements." One of the groups that Rudzki suggests consulting with is your suppliers.

I definitely agree with him on this one. Suppliers are uniquely positioned to evaluate your company. They work closely with you and get to evaluate how you operate. Many of them study your company and try to figure out your strength financially. And they see what your competitors are doing and doing better than you.

As I stated in my recent vlog on the history of purchasing, the supply base is a tremendous source for ideas, improvements, and innovations. Hopefully, Rudzki's whitepaper will get CEO's thinking about suppliers in a new way and will value Purchasing's ability to bring suppliers to the table for more collaboration and greater profit.

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Friday, August 15, 2008

New Negotiation Vlog

Who or what is the purchasing negotiator's worst enemy? Check out this vlog to get my take...



To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Purch-lympics!

In the spirit of the 2008 Olympic Games Next Level Purchasing presents the "Purch-lympics." In a similar fashion to the Olympic Games bringing together athletes in an international competition, the Purch-lympics will bring together purchasing professionals from around the globe in a contest of purchasing skill.

What can you win? While there are no actual medals being awarded for the Purch-lympics, there are three prizes:

- The "Gold Medal" - A full scholarship to earn the SPSM® Certification* (valued at $1,149) awarded to the finalist with the highest number of votes.

- The "Silver Medal" - Enrollment in one of Next Level Purchasing's full-length supply chain online classes (valued at $209) awarded to the finalist with the second highest number of votes.

- The "Bronze Medal" - The "Supply Management in The Real World" eBook (valued at $79) awarded to the finalist with the third highest number of votes.

How can you enter? You will need to submit the following to be eligible for the Purch-lympics competition. Twenty-five (25)** responses that meet the following criteria and are free of major grammatical and spelling errors, will be selected as semi-finalists.

- Write a 300-350 word essay describing a purchasing/procurement problem that you have encountered, what action(s) you took to manage/resolve the problem, and the ultimate result or outcome achieved.

- Include your name, title, and location.

- Include a digital picture of yourself.

Please submit a completed entry by email to megan.tyrseck@nextlevelpurchasing.com; include "Purch-lympics Entry" in the subject line. Entries must be received no later than Sunday, August 17, 2008 at 11:59PM EST. Entries are limited to one entry per individual.

So how do you win?

Five essays will be posted on the Next Level Purchasing Web site and linked from this blog on each of the following days: August 19, August 20, August 21, August 22, and August 25. Purchasers around the globe will be able to view the entries and vote*** for one essay each day which they feel had the best essay. Voting will be open each day from 8:00AM EST through 11:45PM EST. Please visit the Purchasing Certification Blog daily for Purch-lympic updates!

The winners from each semi-final round will then be posted Wednesday, August 27th 8:00AM EST through Thursday August 28th 11:45PM EST, for a final vote. The essay with the highest number of votes will be declared the winner of the Purch-lympics. The winners will be announced on Friday, August 29, 2008.

If you have any questions regarding the Purch-lympics contest, please contact Megan Tyrseck, Next Level Purchasing- External Relations Coordinator, by email at megan.tyrseck@nextlevelpurchasing.com.

Best of luck and let the games begin!

*If the "Gold Medal" winner is currently enrolled in the Senior Professional in Supply Management® Program or has already achieved the SPSM® Certification, he/she will receive $1,149USD in credits to be used towards additional courses from Next Level Purchasing.

**Next Level Purchasing reserves the right to increase the number of semi-finalists. If 30 or fewer responses are received, the first 25 entries received that meet the eligibility criteria will become semi-finalists. If over 30 entries are received, Next Level Purchasing reserves the right to review the entries and select the semi-finalists.

*** Voting is limited to 1 vote per individual per round. Security measures have been established to detect any attempt to defraud the voting system or to provide any contestant with an added advantage. Next Level Purchasing reserves the right to reduce the vote count or disqualify a contestant for suspicious activity.


To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Procurement Decision-Making Series

I recently authored a three-post series on eSourcing Forum. This particular series covered how procurement professionals make good decisions at three different levels: basic, advanced, and expert.

Here are links to each post in the series:

Good Procurement Decision-Making At The Basic Level

Good Procurement Decision-Making At The Advanced Level

Good Procurement Decision-Making At The Expert Level

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Inflation Plus Negotiation Does Not Need To Equal Frustration

I hope that you have enjoyed the article "Negotiating Successfully In Inflationary Times."

What I'm seeing among some purchasing and supply management professionals is bordering on a panicked reaction to commodity price levels. Paying closer attention that ever is advisable, but this is not the time to panic.

As the article suggests, there are things that you should be doing to contain costs. I also think that anyone struggling with inflation should assess their situation by asking these types of questions:

  • Is the price increase proportional to what's going on in the market?
  • Am I globalized enough in this category? (If you have realized cost savings in the past by moving your sources from domestic suppliers to global suppliers and you're experiencing inflation, that's one thing. If you've never explored a global sourcing strategy, that's another.)
  • Could the market be peaking or is there no end in sight when examining the rationale for the inflationary effects?

When you look a year or more down the road, timing is everything. You might hedge like Southwest Airlines (historically good) or like Palisades School District (questionable, hat-tip to strategicsourceror.com).

Hindsight may be 20-20 for the average person. But, in today's challenging purchasing and supply management world, your foresight better be just as good.

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Purchasing Procedure Vlog

The beauty of Web 2.0 is being able to share thoughts informally. So, sometimes I just love to get out the old Web cam and document some thoughts. It isn't always a pretty production nor a discussion of the most earth-shaking topics, but it's fun and, hopefully, helpful or thought-inspiring.

Here's a quick vlog I recorded this morning as I mused about purchasing policies.



To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Monday, August 04, 2008

Interview Advice For SPSM's

I had a brief phone conversation today with an SPSM candidate who said something like "I went on a job interview and the interviewer says s/he never heard of the SPSM® Certification."

Believe it or not, such incidents do not surprise me. If you haven't kept up with the purchasing certification field for five or more years, you wouldn't have heard of the SPSM® Certification. And, scarily enough, there are some people in hiring-level positions who fail to keep up with the changes in the purchasing and supply management field in general for that many years.

You have a choice when presented with this type of situation: you can feel that you've lost or you can use this situation to your advantage.

You know the path I'd recommend, right?

I recommend saying the following: "The purchasing and supply management field is constantly evolving. I dedicate a lot of effort into keeping up-to-date with all of the latest developments. Just one of those developments is the SPSM® Certification, which was launched in 2004. Earning my SPSM® Certification has taught me the latest strategies for success that more traditional purchasing certifications ignore, such as: eProcurement, spend analysis, eSourcing/reverse auctions, and strategic sourcing. I think that earning the SPSM® is a good indicator of my passion for the profession and my commitment to keeping myself up-to-date."

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Friday, August 01, 2008

The SPSM A to Z???

As is customary on the first business day of the month, I'll share news about the continued global spread of the SPSM® Certification.

In July, a purchasing professional from Zambia became the first to earn the SPSM® Certification in his country (hence the Z in the subject of this posting). But another interesting thing happened with regard to the SPSM's global growth...

Canada was pushed out of the top 3 in the ranking of SPSM's per country. India surged to #2.

This got my attention. I love Canada and the Canadian people. Their hometown pride reminds me of the pride that Pittsburghers have. And, of course, Canada produces the best hockey players.

But here's the funny part...

When I shared this tidbit with Michael Lamoureux - the Canadian editor of the Sourcing Innovation Blog - during his recent visit to Next Level Purchasing headquarters, he was lightning quick in saying "India has a population of 1.1 billion people. We only have 33 million."

So India has more SPSM's than Canada. But Canada has a higher SPSM per capita ratio than India.

But let's not get caught up in snapshot data. The SPSM® Certification is growing rapidly so there are bound to be shifts. In July alone, the total number of SPSM's shot up by 18.8%.

If you like this type of data, check back on September 2 for our results from August.

Why not September 1? It's the Labor Day holiday in the USA (and Labour Day in Canada)!

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

Buyers Meeting Point Sponsors The Purchasing Certification Blog

I am pleased to announce that Buyers Meeting Point has signed on as a sponsor of the Purchasing Certification Blog for our three-month trial of sponsorships.

Buyers Meeting Point is a new social commerce site focusing on procurement professionals and covering Europe and the United States. It describes itself as “a revolutionary social commerce networking site that provides people the opportunity to make money or get discovered as procurement professional, all while making friends across the world.”

The site is new and much of its content and value will be provided by its community. It has what I consider to be a valuable infrastructure that can allow for it to become a good Internet destination for purchasing professionals including:

  • A Knowledge Exchange, which provides some free educational material and whitepapers
  • A forum
  • A section where you can browse open positions and post your resume
  • A networking section where you can browse profiles of other registered users
You can check the site out for yourself at http://www.buyersmeetingpoint.com/.

So please join me in extending a warm welcome to Buyers Meeting Point as our newest sponsor!

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
Struggling To Have A Rewarding Purchasing Career?
Earn Your SPSM® Certification Online At
http://www.NextLevelPurchasing.com

ShareThis