The Injustice of Procurement

February 7th, 2017

Have you ever sat in a room with 100 people, whom all have advanced degrees, but have no idea what Procurement is?

 

Today’s post is our SafeSourcing Archives.

During my “spare time” when I am away from the office, I attend night and weekend classes to achieve a higher education at a local university. Every semester, the Professors have the students introduce themselves to the class. We are asked to explain ‘simple’ insights into our lives outside of our academic careers.

1. “Who are you?”
2.  “Where are you from?”
3. “Do you work? If so, where? What do you do?”

All of the questions seem harmless. You have the typical responses from traditional students for questions 1-3, but very few pause on the third question, I am one of them. The last question, “what do you do?” always gives me pause. I pause whenever I am asked this question whether in academia or not.

This semester, I was asked these questions by my Microeconomics Professor. My response was, “Yes, I work for a company in Arizona called SafeSourcing. We are a third party e-Procurement company.”

After I spoke, I was met with many confused looks, and I realized why after I said it. No one knows what procurement or e-procurement is. Procurement is rarely taught in higher education, unless you are a Supply Chain Management Major, and in the private sector it is brought up if you work within a company sect for it, however in the government sector it is common language.

The common individual or fellow student has no idea what Procurement means.

As I was looking through my textbook for Microeconomics, I realized that “Procurement” is not listed anywhere within the book. Why?

Procurement is, in my opinion, the step child in the Economic world. I say that because sometimes, even people who are familiar with purchasing have no idea what Procurement is. They do not know that is the purchasing of goods and services. Every single time a bar code is swiped at the grocery store, the buyer is procuring it. Individuals that participate within the economy typically assume that the items that line the store shelves just get there. It doesn’t matter how, or at what cost, until they reach the check-out line.

Procurement is the awareness around supply chain management and demand curves, and reducing costs where it is possible, so that extra cost never hits the consumer.  Procurement happens where people aren’t looking, at every single point in the economy where money is spent.

Oh, and to educate those who still do not know the definition, defined by BusinessDictionary.com:

The act of obtaining or buying goods and services. The process includes preparation and processing of a demand as well as the end receipt and approval of payment. It often involves:

(1) Purchase planning
(2) Standards determination
(3) Specifications development
(4) Supplier research and selection
(5) Value analysis
(6) Financing
(7) Price negotiation
(8) Making the purchase
(9) Supply contract administration
(10) Inventory control and stores
(11) Disposals and other related functions

The process of procurement is often part of a company’s strategy because the ability to purchase certain materials will determine if operations will continue. A business will not be able to survive if its price of procurement is more than the profit it makes on selling the actual product.
For more information on how we can help you with your procurement needs or on our “Risk Free” trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative.  We have an entire customer services team waiting to assist you today.

We look forward to your comments.

 

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