By Alastair Roy
A well balanced Supplier Strategy should be based on the Procurement mindset – Finding That Sweet Spot.
The five main parts in hospitality procurement are determining what product or service you need to meet your business’s objective, defining the place to ensure goods and services are delivered to the right location, calculating the quantity required and then getting the product or service there on time and crucially at the optimal price.
These five can be distilled into need, time and price and finding the sweet spot between all these aspects gives the edge on best in class procurement to deliver for your business.
With so much supply chain complexity presenting to hotels, bars and restaurants on a constant basis, assimilating and understanding the positive and negative impact on the business requires people who understand the context and can quickly drill into the detail to make recommendations to the owners and/ or board of directors on which way to proceed.
Blending bright individuals with different experiences, backgrounds, ages and education levels, with a focus on professionalism, will make a huge difference to your procurement outcomes and build a deep knowledge base which will benefit the Company long term.
This approach can be applied to ongoing P&L related purchases and Capex focused new build or refurbishment projects.
Enthusiasm for the matters at hand combined with expertise and the ability to communicate in a direct style when dealing with suppliers and contractors, as well as internal stakeholders, modified according to the audience, are important attributes.
Being able to deploy a nuanced approach in negotiations is also useful – if the only tool you have is a hammer then there is a tendency to treat every problem as a nail and this may not always secure the best result.
On other occasions it is, of course, absolutely the right way to handle things. Collaboration is an oft-overused term but it is so critical to the right Procurement Mindset – procurement is not an end in itself, its purpose is always to help the business deliver on its objectives and this involves working with multiple internal and external stakeholders, simultaneously, to achieve goals.
Being able to take calculated, not reckless, risks is also part of the mindset in addition to having the ability to accept and own failures if/when they arise and find solutions to remedy problems and avoid them reoccurring.
Business environments have likely always seemed fast moving for those involved but so many current factors are amplified at an ever increasing rate and it is not always a clear what is being asked or expected – this is particularly the case when addressing ESG factors in procurement. The variables are not binary and the requirement and ability to navigate shades of grey and produce results is supreme.
Having an entrepreneurial spirit is a key tool in the Procurement Mindset, traditional, transactional thinking is not going to cut it.
An eye for innovation, leaning in towards adaptability plus naturally embracing and enjoying change are vital components to the hard skills of a Procurement Specialist and when effectively integrated to your business, they will make a significant contribution to finding that sweet spot!.
For more information on The Procurement Mindset contact email@example.com www.aroprocurement.com