Is purchasing today already yesterday - what does purchasing of the future need?
Rethinking. A word that is currently at the top of the agenda in many companies. Sometimes it opens up a completely new path and sometimes it stings like an unpleasant thorn. What are the possibilities and what are the prerequisites for rethinking? And above all, what does it mean for purchasing?
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There is no question that we have to rethink, but in which direction should this thinking take place? In international companies - increasingly in the automotive industry - the rethinking has already taken place. The "new buyer" can already be found there. The structural change process is in full swing. It won't happen overnight, but the sooner tomorrow begins, the better. The first step is to fade out what currently determines everyday life in our purchasing departments and to open up to a new view.
Throw rigid structures and corsets overboard
Last but not least, the pandemic has taught us that rigid structures no longer work. Both controlling leadership and outdated working models no longer have a place in the modern business world and in the new generation of employees and should therefore be thrown overboard. The tasks in purchasing are becoming increasingly complex and multi-layered. Pathetically speaking, buyers around the world are on the threshold of a new age. In the past, purchasing was purely an ordering department, but it has now advanced to become the central point of contact in the company. The pure focus on cost reduction and efficiency is no longer sufficient. Digitalisation and the dynamic and increasingly complex environment are also broadening the spectrum of purchasing tasks. In order to make purchasing a success factor for every company in the future, it needs employees who keep pace with these changes.
The buyer of the future
The buyer of the future will be a manager of his commodity group, assume a lot of personal responsibility, master intercultural communication and thus be an all-rounder of a modern industrial company. He will become an ambassador for his company. His negotiating skills will determine the success of the buyer. He will no longer be the price-squeezer of years past, but "negotiating with personality" will set him apart. He will travel and always have his office with him. He will work in interdisciplinary teams together with developers, technicians and sales people on a project-by-project basis. Meetings will still take place, but more efficiently than today. The participants will ensure that time is used creatively and that one reaches the goal together.
The new role of purchasing
The variety of purchasing tasks has already increased significantly over the past years and will continue to expand in the future. It is up to the companies and the buyers to take advantage of the opportunities and possibilities this brings and to give purchasing a new role in the company. Beyond the role of cost manager, the modern buyer is increasingly taking on cross-sectional tasks - for this to succeed, employees also need a clear self-understanding of their own role in purchasing. The path from today's procurement to the future of purchasing management involves a fundamental transformation - is your purchasing department ready to go down this path?
Do you want to make your procurement fit for the future? We would be happy to advise you and initiate the necessary steps together with you. Simply arrange a non-binding meeting with us.