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Rod Sherkin

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Use labor productivity to drive down purchase costs

 Suppliers often use wage increases to justify nudging up prices each year, usually 1 or 2%. And it’s hard to argue: – seems reasonable, and it’s less than inflation. But wages aren’t the real issue – labor costs are. And

BEATING THE BUDGET BLUES

ProPurchaser INSIGHT: Tired of being blamed for price increases that you have no control over?  There is a solution.  The annual ritual Most Purchasers are called upon each year to prepare a budget for the products they buy. Given the

Rack Up Savings

Stan Hankowski, a seasoned Buyer with a major American retailer tells an intriguing story that shows how Purchasers can help themselves by helping their suppliers. He went to market last year to buy steel racking. He expected higher prices because he’d

Purchasers’ turn to shine

It’s still quite scary out there: recession clouds are still lurking. Sales volumes are struggling to rise; unfortunately, costs are struggling less, as suppliers pile on price increases, citing higher raw material costs as the reason. Call to action What

Fishing with Suppliers: A ProPurchaser CORE PRACTICE

ProPurchaser CORE PRACTICE #5: Go “Fishing” with Suppliers.   I once had a very smart boss whose favorite expression was “Fish where the big fish are!” So where do the “big fish” lurk for reducing costs for the products and

Shale gas blasts open world energy market

Unconventional treasure: Shale gas is trapped deep inside rock formations. Shale gas is a new and abundant source of natural gas, trapped in rock formations. Oil companies have known about it for decades but always dismissed it because it was too

Has our profession made strides over the last 7 years? – Part 1

Results of two time-staggered surveys As you may know, back in 2003, we asked people to fill in an on-line survey to help Purchasing Professionals gauge their organization’s overall purchasing effectiveness. We asked 7 questions that touched on senior management

US Electric Power Markets – National Overview

If you have ever wanted to understand changes in your suppliers’ electricity costs, you might find this U.S. federal government website useful. It identifies regions and ‘hubs’. The best news is that pricing for most hubs is free and a matter of

A BETTER WAY TO NEGOTIATE

A ProPurchaser CORE PRACTICE: Never enter negotiations without first researching what has happened to your supplier’s costs Two Ways We Engage with Suppliers As Purchasing professionals, we use two main approaches to establishing prices with suppliers. The first is through

Tag-Team to Wrestle Costs Down

The arithmetic is simple: profits are being squeezed. Finding ways to drive down costs lower than your competition’s has become more important than ever. Here, we describe a different approach to supplier negotiations that might help you gain an edge.