Would your company like to make the procurement profession more sought after by college graduates?

May 15th, 2009

In order for companies to hire and retain professionals

In order for companies to hire and retain professionals, candidates have to first be desirous of the profession. In order to accomplish this companies need to seek ways to make jobs fun and to tie them more directly to social responsibility.

According to a nationwide survey of college students by the Panetta Institute for Public Policy, when surveyed students were asked to choose from a list of career opportunities, 49% of students surveyed listed their greatest interest in working for a socially responsible company.

Another survey by William M. Mercer finds that, only 29 percent of employers nationwide encourage humor as part of their company culture, and only eight percent have a policy of using fun to reduce employee stress. California State University Long Beach found that people who have fun at work are more creative, more productive, work better with others and call in sick less often.

It seems simple to this author that if companies want to make the procurement profession a job that students seek out rather than one that they end up transferred in to, they can endeavor to combine elements of fun and social responsibly while also advertising that message to our best and brightest.

There is a very clear opportunity to accomplish the above in the e-negotiation space of procurement where the droll use of board room pilots and demos continue to put executives to sleep while they watch screens that do absolutely nothing for at least the first half of an event.

A good place where companies might start is with their current or prospective solution providers. Asking some of the following questions may provide some clarity to your search.

1. What have you done to make the use of e-negotiation tools more fun and engaging?
2. Have you done anything with score card systems that would engage disparate departments in a gaming mentality versus each other?
3. Can you suggest a reward system that supports these tools in order to encourage utilization and competition?
4. What specifically do your tools do to proactively support social responsibility?
5. Can you please demo all of this to me right now?

These questions should be able to be answered immediately, and an instant meeting or WebEx session set up within minutes in order to demonstrate the functionality.

We appreciate and look forward to your comments.

Ron Southard

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