April seems to have been a particularly important month for ‘new starts’ this year.
With the first stages of lockdown easing in England seeing some businesses opening up again, the start of the new tax year, which for many companies coincides with the start of their financial year, it is a traditional period of goal setting and new targets.
For many, though, the challenges of last year have left their businesses with less financial reserves to draw on, smaller resource pools due to redundancies and all within a climate of difficult trading conditions, meaning their focus is very much on recovery and short term survival. Although it hasn’t been the same story across the board…
Some sectors have been faced with the opposite challenge with demand for their products or services going through the roof, bringing problems in terms of immediate short-term growth and resource shortages. But as we come out of lockdown will that increased demand remain in all areas or fall away again, leaving businesses having to respond to a large change in requirements once again. What then for the new year strategy for these organisations?
As we come out of 2020/21, one area that does seem to be showing growth is the procurement sector. Most large organisations have in house procurement teams to manage their third party spend and risk, however for those businesses who have never considered it a priority, the events of the last 12 months have shown what can happen if you don’t have the right framework and structures in place. Robust commercial arrangements, good working relationships, risk registers with contingency plans and a good knowledge of alternative providers are all key to any business’ procurement strategy although they often get paid lip service or left to one side with the focus being on lowest cost. If the pandemic has taught businesses anything about working with their third parties, it should be that knowing where your risks lie AND having plans in place to deal with them should they arise, is important as that ‘one day’ scenario can (and did) occur.
So what are your #ProcurementGoals for this year? Of course businesses still need to ensure they save money and focus on cost but what of your #SupplierRelationshipManagement approach? We’d be interested to know what you have learned in this area from the last 12 months and what your business is doing differently going forward.
Get in touch to see how Aster can help your business.
Follow us on LinkedIn.