I’m going to quote from the current issue of CFO Magazine Australia (apparently the article is not available online but it’s called When the price is right if you can get hold of it).
The opening paragraphs go as follows:
It might be thought that buying is the easiest part of a chief financial officer’s job. After all, deciding what to buy and signing a cheque sounds a lot easier than issuing a complex instrument like hybrid notes.
But actually, buying, or procurement, has been elevated to a high art and those who can master it stand to cut [sic] millions from the bottom line.
For many organisations, procurement is a low priority and buying decisisnos and power are spread around the company.
The article then goes on at length to describe how significant gains can be made by consolidating spend across business units, by rationalising specifications and by taking a more co-operative approach that “let’s suppliers shine”.
None of this would come as particularly revelatory to buyers of course but this is a magazine aimed at CFOs. It’s great to see purchasing getting some coverage in the rest of the business. But also, if spend aggregation really is still such a key topic, then it goes to show how much more the profession still has to do.