Pivotal First Step

Posted: July 22nd, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | No Comments »

This blog contains proven, useful techniques and best practices that will help you better prepare for negotiations with suppliers. The benefits are obvious, both for you and your employer.

But before you read any further, we strongly suggest you take a few minutes and watch this video:

Click for Video

It contains excerpts from a lecture given by Rod Sherkin at Bryant University, Rhode Island.  Watching will put everything below into context and – more importantly – accelerate your mastering of ProPurchaser’s CORE PRACTICES.

Sustainable Procurement – Supplier charter

Posted: November 30th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: CSR in purchasing, Gem | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Sustainable procurement
One way of integrating sustainable procurement into your supply chain is to start a the very beginning and put a ‘supplier charter‘ in place.

Set out your companies CSR priorities, send these to your suppliers along with a questionnaire asking them to evaluate how they perform against each of the priorities. Once you start collecting information and forming a constructive dialogue with your suppliers, it becomes possible to implement your CSR objectives through your supply chain.

How to implement a supplier charter

The Multiplier Effect

Posted: November 25th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Best practices, Gem, Greening the Supply Chain, Negotiating with Suppliers, What's Happening in Our Profession | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

multiplier effectIf you want to really use your buying power to make a environmental difference, make sure that any “green” criteria for vendor selection are widely publicized so that your suppliers’ competitors hear about them too.
In this way, encouraging a change in one supplier can have a “multiplier effect” on many others.

via Negotiating Nugget | Propurchaser.


Posted: November 23rd, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Bronze, China, Copper, Economic Barometer, Metals, Negotiating with Suppliers, Nickel, Stainless Steel, Uncategorized, US Dollar, Wall Street Journal | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

NEGOTIATOR’S TAKE: You should be paying significantly less for Stainless Steel and Bronze parts and components.

Copper and nickel hit six- and 12½-year lows

Two of the world’s most important industrial metals, copper and nickel, fell to fresh multiyear lows, battered by a mix of weak growth, rising output and a stronger dollar.

The day’s declines made nickel the first widely traded metal to fall below the levels it traded at during the financial crisis, while copper has lost 11% of its value this month-to-date alone.  Many investors see little respite for copper, nickel and other industrial metals, which are widely used in electronics, electrical products, construction and infrastructure.


China demand slows and dollar strengthens

“Ultimately, commodities are going to continue heading lower [because] there’s anticipation of China slowing down, Europe slowing down and the dollar getting stronger,” said Daniel Pavilonis, a senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago.  A stronger greenback makes dollar-denominated commodities such as nickel and copper more expensive for consumers in most countries, weighing on global prices.


Copper and metals graph. WSJ Nov 2016


Read the rest of this ProPurchaser sourced article, HERE.

Source: WALL STREET JOURNAL, November 2015



Posted: November 9th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Best practices, Economic Barometer, Economic Indicators, Energy, Energy, Houston Natural Gas Storage, Natural Gas, Negotiating with Suppliers, Uncategorized, US Dollar, USA, What's Happening in Our Profession | Tags: , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

NEGOTIATOR’S TAKE: Record storage means Natural Gas prices likely to remain low for the foreseeable future.

Set to beat 2012 record

The U.S. has tied and is set to surpass a record for the amount of natural gas in storage, according to the latest Energy Department data.

Inventory figures released early this month show 3.929 trillion cubic feet in storage across the country, tying the previous weekly record of 3.929 trillion cubic feet set on Nov. 2, 2012.  And with two or three weeks of additional inventory gains expected this year, it’s likely the U.S. will have a new high mark by the time the summer and fall injection season ends.

The large amount of gas in storage, continued strong gas production and forecasts for a warm winter — which would mean less need for natural gas as a heating fuel — have weighed on prices.  Natural gas fell close to $2 per million British thermal unit at the end of October, a three-year low.

Traditionally, U.S. inventories rise during the warm summer months and then fall as cold weather arrives and natural gas is used for heating.  A colder-than-expected winter could lead to higher prices, but it would take a prolonged cold snap to burn through the extra cushion provided by the record amount of storage and force prices up significantly.

In total, the U.S. Energy Information Administration estimated that about 2.453 trillion cubic feet of natural gas has gone into storage since April, the second largest amount behind only the 2014 injection season.  This winter, the EIA is forecasting the winter inventory draws will be less than the five-year average at about 2 trillion cubic feet.

That would leave about 1.9 trillion cubic feet of gas in storage when the weather warms in 2016, plenty to weigh prices down into next year as well.  The EIA forecasts that natural gas prices will remain below $3 per million British thermal unit through mid-2016.


Weekly gas storage graph. NOV 2015

SOURCE: Fuel Fix [fuelfix.com]

AUTHOR: Robert Grattan, Energy Reporter at fuelfix.com and the Houston Chronicle – view his LinkedIn profile, HERE

Are Green Supply-Chains More Expensive?

Posted: November 5th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Gem, Greening the Supply Chain | Tags: , , | No Comments »

SurveyThis is the second article discussing the results of our ongoing survey examining what Supply-Chain professionals in North America are thinking and (more importantly) doing about greening their supply-chains.

The first article, How important is a Green Supply-Chain in North America?, focused on the perceived importance of a green supply-chain, homing in on senior management’s expectations, as well as our own attitudes towards suppliers with green credentials.

The survey asked how strongly participants agreed or disagreed with the following statements:
Read the rest of Are Green Supply-Chains More Expensive? » » »

Made in the USA: A Case for Reshoring

Posted: October 31st, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Gem, Labor | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Reshoring USA

Reshoring Gives Economic Hope to Manufacturers

Offshore outsourcing has become one of the hot button political issues of the day. Especially in light of the U.S. economic downturn, there is a desperate need for more jobs for American workers, while at the same time companies are looking for ways to save money to keep themselves afloat. But now it looks as though reshoring might be an idea that makes sense for both sides, making reshoring a trend that just might stick.

The OffShore Outsourcing Controversy

Off-shoring in the manufacturing, customer service, and tech industries has been happening for some time now and opponents feel there are far more negatives than positives to offshore outsourcing (delays, hidden costs, quality control), while others see nothing but an effective strategy for keeping costs down.

Read the rest of Made in the USA: A Case for Reshoring » » »

Use Peer Pressure to Drive Down Costs

Posted: October 26th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Best practices, Gem, Negotiating with Suppliers, What's Happening in Our Profession | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Drive down costsDriving down costs by ‘coaxing’ voluntary behavior change. Anyone who survived the social pressure cooker of high school knows about the power of peer pressure.

For purchasing professionals trying to drive down cost, the good news is that peer pressure can have the same impact in corporate corridors as it did in the blackboard jungle.

from The Power of Peer Pressure in Propurchaser’s Negotiating Nuggets.

Negotiate knowing what you SHOULD be paying

Posted: October 21st, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Gem, What's Happening in Our Profession | Tags: , | 1 Comment »


In a Perfect World

Imagine the negotiating edge you would have if you knew—and could demonstrate—what you SHOULD be paying for the products you buy, especially when suppliers come to you with sad tales about price increases they just can’t hold off any longer because of global commodity price rises.

This is not wishful thinking.

Read the rest of Negotiate knowing what you SHOULD be paying » » »

How important is a Green Supply-Chain in North America?

Posted: October 16th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: CSR in purchasing, Gem, Greening the Supply Chain | Tags: , | No Comments »

Green supply-chainWe certainly hear a lot about the importance of reducing the amount of carbon our species is releasing into the atmosphere. But we don’t hear much about what this really means to our profession: in other words, how important is a ‘green’ Supply-Chain in North America?

To answer this question we recently sent out a 14-question survey to hundreds of Supply-Chain professionals. The results are in and you may find them interesting.

Three Key Findings.

Read the rest of How important is a Green Supply-Chain in North America? » » »

Benchmark Your Organization’s Purchasing Effectiveness

Posted: October 11th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Gem, What's Happening in Our Profession | Tags: , | 1 Comment »

Purchasing survey

Dear Colleague

Back in 2003, we created a simple, on-line survey to help Purchasing Professionals gauge their organization’s overall purchasing effectiveness.

The goals were to first measure attitudes and practices, and then offer concrete suggestions for making improvements. The initiative was successful: almost 3,000 people participated.

One of our readers had a great idea – why not re-do the survey? We could compare new results to the original numbers and see if there’s been a shift in attitudes and practices, over the past 7 years.

These 7 areas are covered and answers range between strongly agree and strongly disagree.

Read the rest of Benchmark Your Organization’s Purchasing Effectiveness » » »

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