Everyone is a student of “purchases,” whether they realize it or not.
“It’s really what we do every day,” said Joe Walden, associate professor of business administration at the University of Kansas.
“When you go to the grocery store, you’re there to make the purchases. You find the suppliers, you negotiate quality terms and delivery price with them, and then you pick it up and pay for it.”
Walden’s new article “What Do We Teach Our Procurement Students?” It looks at why there is a talent gap in the industry, which can be traced back to what future supply chain managers and procurement professionals learn in college. The paper analyzes what these professionals are expected to know and what recruiters are looking for, then makes recommendations about how this can be addressed by academic programs. Posted in Journal of Supply Chain Management, Logistics and Procurement.
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) defines procurement as “identifying, obtaining, accessing, locating, and managing the relevant resources and capabilities that an organization needs or needs in achieving strategic objectives.”
While defining this subset of the supply chain is well recognized among professionals, Walden said there are still key undervalued areas in the functional area.
“One of the most important parts of procurement is understanding quality,” he said. “We’ve learned through many experiences that the lowest price doesn’t guarantee the best quality. Sometimes the lowest price equals the lowest quality, which is really why a lot of companies shy away from going to the lowest priced and finding what they’re starting to call.” best resource.”
Ethics is another aspect that Walden said is crucial not to be overlooked.
“Dealing with ethical suppliers. Dealing ethically with suppliers. Going through the process of finding quality vendors with products that can deliver when you need them – that combination of quality and ethics is probably the two most important pieces,” he said.
One of the primary misconceptions about the field, Walden said, is that it’s easy. Simple, even.
“People assume, ‘We all buy things, so we all understand buying.'” But it’s very difficult. You have to locate suppliers, especially if it’s a new product. You have to look for people who already have those materials that you need. And you have to make sure they come when you want them in addition. To that, it has to be the right quality at the right price.”
Those who considered buying easy may have gone through a change in attitudes after the COVID-19 pandemic. One byproduct of the event, Walden said, is that it forced people to realize that products didn’t just magically appear. The so-called “Amazon effect,” in which a purchase is expected to appear after two days, has often proven to be no longer reliable or stable.
“Everyone expects that if you buy an item, it’s going to be on your doorstep. Well, if the purchasing officer doesn’t expect you to buy enough, it won’t be there. I can throw away all the money I want, but it’s not going to make things get to you faster.” “The beauty of the pandemic is that it has forced people to look at the supply chain and procurement through a magnifying glass.”
Raised in North Carolina, Walden spent 26 years in the US Army, with five more working as a contractor. There, he developed his warehousing and distribution expertise, which included designing a 4.2 million square foot distribution center in Kuwait for Operation Iraqi Freedom. Retired colonel.
He said he hopes his assessment of the talent gap in procurement will persuade those in supply chain academia to reexamine their curricula.
“Even the top schools with the best supply chain programs in the world don’t necessarily teach all the basic skills,” Walden said.
“So, if students want to get into procurement when they come out, I want to make sure they are taught about ethics, negotiation, supplier selection, and supplier evaluation — things that aren’t always taught right now. We need to get academics to realize what they need to start doing in order to become Our students are more competitive.”
paper: What do we teach our procurement students?
the quote: Causes of the Procurement Talent Gap Examined in New Business Analysis (2023, May 11), retrieved May 11, 2023 from https://phys.org/news/2023-05-talent-gap-field-business-analysis .html
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