Young professionals taking their first steps in procurement and supply chain jobs have a new online learning tool at their disposal: A Twitter forum, #ProcurementHour, which allows inexperienced practitioners to ask questions about best practices of seasoned experts without the intimidation of professional hierarchy.

The forum was created and set up by David Kershaw, who counts himself among the ranks of the country’s agile and tech-savvy procurement interims, and his colleague, Mark Culley, senior procurement manager with Milton Keynes Council.

Speaking to Supply Management(SM) magazine, Kershaw explained that the aim was to provide a democratic arena where purchasers, suppliers, and stakeholders from any sector could ask questions, while he and Culley work in the background as administrators. Both men are clear that they don’t want the forum to have ownership. They want participants to have the complete freedom to ask what they need to. He told SMthat a significant problem in procurement today revolved around hierarchy. Everyone is the boss of somebody else, and no one wants to look foolish in front of a boss. The forum seeks to move that potential source of intimidation, or at least inhibition, aside and reduce hierarchy so that participants are free to ask whatever they like.

The forum is scheduled to take place on a fortnightly basis, with the most recent one on 25thJuly. Each forum will explore different themes, from legal to supplier relationship management, to spend analytics and data, to market engagement. Kershaw continued: “There are so many things that people are desperate to know about from a supply chain point of view, but also young people in procurement who sometimes feel they can’t ask these questions in the workplace. When I was junior and desperate to learn stuff, I wish this was around then.” Noting that most opportunities to learn in procurement were confined to expensive courses and networking events, he added: “It’s free so why would you not do it?” 

Source:  https://www.cips.org/en/supply-management/news/2019/july/time-has-come-for-procurementhour/