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Procurement people nowadays need to understand world economics. And of course they should be proficient in the various branches of mathematics that have an impact on our activities.


Huge changes in the world economy present opportunities for procurement professionals to show their true worth, says Robin Jackson of consultants ADR INTERNATIONAL.

In ADR International’s latest eBulletin Jackson says globalisation, an increase in concerns over the environment and increased risk mean that procurement is now a far more strategic function with much bigger challenges and responsibilities.

The crucial factor for success is skills, he says. “This means not only expert skills in procurement but also, for example, understanding cultural differences and having some knowledge of languages such as Spanish, Russian or Cantonese.

“Procurement people nowadays need to understand world economics. And of course they should be proficient in the various branches of mathematics that have an impact on our activities.”

Now is the time to return to the Three Rs - Right Size, Right Shape and Right Fit - says Richard McIntosh, Director of ADR People, ADR International’s recruitment and interim division.

These mean making sure procurement departments are the correct size, that the roles within them are appropriate and that the right people are in those roles.

Rebecca Howard, Director of ADR Learning, ADR International’s training and development division, asks whether job applicants should list all their completed training courses on their CVs.

The answer is “yes”, she says, but candidates should also explain what they gained from each course and how they put it to practical use.

Simon Aldred, Director of ADR Sourcing, says procurement people will need to become increasingly competent in predicting trends in the market. “Future sourcing”, he says, is particularly relevant in today’s uncertain world.

“Although you cannot predict future currency changes you can attempt to understand their impact and engage with your finance people to find out what protection can be bought, you may also be able to structure deals in a way that minimises exposure, certainly in the short term.“



ADR International is one of the world’s longest-standing global procurement consultancies, established in 1986. It applies its knowledge and expertise to help its clients improve every aspect of their procurement activity. ADR International provides expertise in procurement consultancy, training and development, sourcing, permanent and interim recruitment, technology and audit.

ADR International works with several global corporations to improve their procurement effectiveness. Clients include The Walt Disney Company, Pfizer, Nokia and Alcan and with public sector organisations in local government, policing and the NHS.
ADR International is based in Oxfordshire, UK. ADR International (North America) is based in Ann Arbour, Michigan. ADR International also has offices in South Africa and Australia.

For more information please visit ADR International

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