Four Common Traits of Successful CPOs

Posted by Christopher Dwyer on February 8th, 2016
Stored in Articles, Chief Procurement Officers, General, Lists, People, Technology

There is no doubt that the impact of globalization has affected the procurement function in a profound manner. From core sourcing principles to supplier management processes, the evolution of business and commerce actively impacts how procurement professionals do their jobs. As new technologies emerge and the standards of business change, Chief Procurement Officers (CPOs) and their teams must rely on consistent capabilities, repeatable processes, and actionable intelligence to drive more enhanced decision-making and help propel procurement’s influence into new areas…all as a means of combating the ramifications of globalization.

Successful CPOs can be found in businesses both large and small, across the world, and in various industries. And, those successful CPOs all have common traits that set them apart from the rest of the pack. Today’s CPO Rising article highlights some of those common traits, such as:

  1. A willingness to collaborate with other stakeholders. By now, the vast majority of businesses understand that, in order to succeed at the corporate level, collaboration is a must. No CPO in today’s fast-paced, complex, and globalized market can afford to tackle commerce without collaborating with finance, human resources, IT, operations, or treasury.
  2. An openness to new and emerging technologies. Business networks? Mobile applications? Contingent workforce management and freelancer management technologies? These are just a few of the emerging and evolving solutions that are actively supporting next-generation procurement endeavors. By being open to adopting, implementing, and utilizing emerging solutions, CPOs can leverage innovation to improve the innerworkings of their programs.
  3. Prioritizes leadership and the progression of the procurement staff. There’s a reason why “people” is regularly one of the top focal areas for today’s Chief Procurement Officers: talent is a major concern in today’s business world, and organizations must do what they can to engage and retain top-tier talent. Not only must the CPO be a true leader, it must ensure that it prioritizes the development and future progression of its staff.
  4. The ability to “see” what’s ahead. No procurement executive has a crystal ball, however, this function does have the next-best thing: analytics. Successful CPOs not only embrace the evolution of analytics and reporting, but also link the intelligence from analytical capabilities into their decision-making. Top-tier CPOs understand the future implications of their spend, as well as the possibility of various risks in their supplier base, and can utilize today’s knowledge to make better decisions tomorrow.

Nearly every Chief Procurement Officer has the potential to be great. By embracing the traits above, today’s procurement executives can truly drive value as their organizations continue to grow and evolve in the globalized marketplace. Learn more about what it takes to be a successful CPO – attend CPO Rising 2016 – the procurement event of the year – in Boston this March. Click here to register!


Video Invitation to CPO Rising 2016 – The Procurement Event of 2016!

The State of the Chief Procurement Officer in 2016 (Hypothesis)

Manifest Destiny: The CPO’s Call to Expand

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