Research has found that organisations looking to hire procurement professionals want candidates to have specialist expertise in negotiation, networking and category knowledge. These skills attributes, the research found, are the foundations of crucial influencing and internal promotion skills.

Value creation

Many of the skills that organisations are looking for in a procurement professional are obvious. Today, however, companies are looking at value creation rather than simply keeping procurement costs low. Skills like negotiation are of particular interest as organisations want exceptional procurement professionals who can identify services that offer additional value without increasing costs. That’s why it is imperative for candidates to be able to build a large network of suppliers and understand the internal requirement of your organisation.

Thorough supply chain knowledge

When a procurement professional has specialist category expertise, it means that they can identify suitable spend categories along with market trends, services and suppliers. This helps them to ensure much sought-after added value while also having an in-depth understanding of the requirements of internal stakeholders and meeting those requirements by sourcing from different suppliers and vendors.

Attracting the best services

Experts believe that if organisations want to attract the best procurement talent, they should ensure that the procurement department is involved in the purchasing process from the outset rather than simply coming in at a later stage to negotiate. Potential candidates are likely to be enticed to your organisation if you make it clear that your company operates in this manner. This is because incoming procurement professionals can get to grips with negotiations and ensure the best value for money for every deal.

When procurement is not part of the buying process from the initial stage, it can reduce the influence that professionals have during the negotiation stage. They will not be able to get the best deals. On the other hand, if they are part of the process from the beginning, they will take accountability and be able to add more value to the entire procurement process.

Dealing with procurement talent shortage

Experts believe that if organisations perceive procurement talent as a way to minimise costs, they will fail to attract the best. Today’s procurement talent is looking to add real value to companies by using their skills, innovative ideas and ambition – they are no longer content with simply trying to minimise procurement costs.

As such, organisations should look to cultivate in-house talent with proper training and succession planning. Research by Deloitte found that there are a large number of millennials in procurement departments. This raw, young talent should be harnessed to ensure the digital transformation of procurement, thereby adding real value to any organisations and bringing the supply chain into the twenty-first century.

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