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Rod Sherkin

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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 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.

Negotiate knowing what you SHOULD be paying

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

Benchmark Your Organization’s Purchasing Effectiveness

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

Don’t Sweat the Details – It’s the Direction that Counts

Years ago, while working for Green Giant, I phoned our steel can sales rep to ask for a 4% reduction. We had information suggesting steel prices had fallen 8%. He certainly wasn’t very happy and, as expected, argued against any


The struggle to find good-fit suppliers never ends. Unfortunately, you can’t find them from your office or even on the Internet. The solution is an old fashion plant tour. This Negotiating Nugget describes why plant tours are so important, and explains how to get the most from the time you invest in them. Allow yourself 5 minutes.

If you found this article interesting, we think you’ll find the Propurchaser website even more so… Judge for yourself. Click the link below for a free trial membership.


Established in 1999, has become a trusted information source, known for its timely & accurate marketplace reporting. We work closely with leading associations & businesses, such as the Institute for Supply Management (ISM), Purchasingb2b Magazine, and the Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters network. We also have the distinction of being chosen to partner with the Purchasing Management Association of Canada (PMAC).

Our members include Purchasing and business professionals from a wide variety of leading enterprises throughout the United States and Canada – Home Depot, Snap-on Tools, Home Depot, Cargill, HSBC Bank, Pfizer, Jacuzzi, Scott Paper, Medbuy, and Famous Players Theatres, to name a few.

For more information, visit, email, or phone 416-642-1438 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 416-642-1438 end_of_the_skype_highlighting to talk to our staff.