Lockdown: a golden opportunity or a purchasing stronghold?

Sadly, most procurement and Service Managers are stuck in a rut. Whilst we act differently in a pandemic; there’s more fear and a sense of appreciating life more, sadly the same failings still occur. I learnt this week, that bucking this trend can help enormously but it’s not for the faint-hearted.

I was talking to a client and loved his refreshing perspective; ‘everything that’s been pushed into the long grass, needs to be assessed and if it will help; now’s the time to focus on it’ he explained – ‘this is a golden opportunity for those that don’t fall into old habits in the new environment’.

He was infuriated though, as instead, panic and control were the old habits that remained. He wanted his procurement and IT teams to work together, to spend the time they complain they never have, researching the market for systems that his bigger competitors are using, to copy what the best are doing and find ways for him to do it in his business.

I want to be clear though, he didn’t want to actually spend money yet and I get that, he just wanted to be ready to spend money, knowing that he’d considered all the options available to him. He was, therefore, pushing his teams to scope what the business needed, identifying and testing the best systems and solutions, so they can quickly capitalise on opportunities when others are just trying to get back to normal.

I’m often on the receiving end of this problem where busy managers are given extra projects that run alongside their day jobs, and constantly say they’re not getting the time they require. This refreshing thinking was helping the company move forward rather than tread water and it wasn’t costing them anything – quite simply recognising a golden opportunity to make astute purchasing decisions that will help this business grow even more. A good news story in these strange times.

So, it got me thinking what are other businesses doing to take advantage of this golden opportunity?