Viewpoint March 2014


Future Purchasing Viewpoint
Mark Webb

Mark Webb

Managing Director,
Future Purchasing

Welcome to the February edition of FP Viewpoint. We’ve delayed publication by a few days because we have been finalising our next Category Management Survey and wanted to launch it in Viewpoint.

We are building on the previous survey in 2012 and have worked with Professor Marc Day of Henley Business School to enhance the themes and questions for this edition.

Results of the survey will be published in early June and we are looking forward to seeing what has changed in the world of category management over the past couple of years.

The survey takes about 15 minutes to be completed and can be found here >

Also this month, Julian Allbut from our consulting team shares the second Tier of his ‘Procurement Ready’ knowledge base.

A gritty topic becomes even grittier as Julian identifies the procurement knowledge that differentiates Category Management Leaders from Followers.

Read our insight guide on Building a Procurement Ready Knowledge Base - Part II >

Get in touch with all feedback on:

+ 44 (0)778 607 8417 or email

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Improved financial results

We are working with a number of clients who see that applying category management principles and ways of working to their external spend is the best way to deliver significantly improved financial results.

For more details on Category Management please read our recent 2012-13 survey into Category Management best practice

“FP Director Debates the Public Sector Procurement Opportunity with David Cameron”

On March 28, FP Director Allison Ford-Langstaff discussed the still untapped opportunity for public sector procurement with Prime Minister David Cameron.

It’s a couple of years since we published our Public Procurement Report and debated the content with leading members of UK government including the Public Administration Select Committee and a memorable encounter with the then government chief procurement officer, John Collington.

Last Friday, FP Director Allison Ford-Langstaff got to discuss thisuntapped opportunity that still exists with the Prime Minister at an event in Oxfordshire and personally give him a copy of the report. He expressed interest and we have been invited to phone his policy advisor in Downing Street for more in-depth discussions – we will update readers next month with what unfolds.

You can read Allison’s blog about meeting David Cameron
here > Please tell us in the comments what you’d like to ask his policy advisor.

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“2014 Category Management Survey”

If you have not yet had your say, Future Purchasing would like to invite you to take part in our 2014 Category Management survey. Just click on the link here > to get started.

In 2012, over 300 people from 40 countries took part and the results identified the leading practices that drive Category Management performance.

What is it? A 15-20 minute survey with multiple choice questions in seven different sections. You can share your views on the current state of Category Management in your organisation.

What’s in it for you? We will publish and share the results with you once we have crunched the data.

Why do we do it? We will have a huge amount of data from which we can:

  • Identify and quantify the value delivered by Category Management
  • Understand the different approaches used for Category Management design and implementation in organisations
  • Identify the resources needed to deliver value through Category Management
  • Assess which Category Management approaches have most impact on Procurement performance

The report will then be shared with the survey respondents and the wider procurement community.

Take part now and receive advance copies of our findings, keeping you ahead. You can begin by clicking here >

“Building a ‘Procurement Ready’ Knowledge Base – The Directors Cut”

We recently compiled and expanded our thinking on ‘Procurement Ready’ Knowledge for DILF, the professional institute in Denmark..

In this article we expanded on the themes we have written in the last two the definitions of 16 different types of spend analysis and knowledge that leading organisations use – from fundamentals such as Spend by Category, Unit Price & Volumes through to more advanced knowledge such as Unitisation, Specification Mapping and Consumption Profiling.

How to Benchmark your capability in Category Management

FP can help you to confirm the scale of additional benefit available to your organisation by optimising category management.

We can compare you against “world class” performance and confirm what you need to change in order to optimise Category Management and advance to the next level of performance.

The process takes approximately five days and the report will identify your strengths and weaknesses and a customised roadmap to optimise Category Management in your organisation.

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