The position of the chief procurement officer (“CPO”) in the modern enterprise is evolving. Much of this shift is caused by external factors, like a supply chain that is widening in scope and complexity, but some of it also results from CEOs starting to pay attention to procurement in a way they never have before. These dual pressures have forced CPOs to change their viewpoint on the supply chain, as well as how the procurement team can drive the enterprise value that it must in order to stay relevant internally. It is in light of this that Ardent Partners is bringing together some of the top procurement executives worldwide to discuss the changing role, and viewpoint of the CPO at the CPO Rising 2016 Summit in Boston on March 29 and 30 (click here to learn more or register).

Many CEOs have started to pay closer attention to their procurement operations, but that does not mean that the shift is universal. That is why Louie Psallidas, CEO of Uno Chicago Grill, will take the stage on the morning of March 29 to discuss ways procurement can capture the CEO’s attention. This is an important step for procurement to remain “top of mind” and show its strategic value to the organization; if the CPO cannot gain the CEO’s attention for the right reasons, then investment in improving the procurement operations of organizations large and small can be affected. Psallidas will share strategies that CPOs can leverage in the real world, which he has gained from years on the operational and financial side of the executive table.

As part of emphasizing the value that procurement can drive to the wider organization, it is important to consider the type of business transformation that all enterprises must experience as they grow. Katharina Stenholm, global CPO for SABMiller, discusses how to transition the procurement organization into an integrated business partner in her March 29th session, emphasizing the challenges and considerations for changing procurement from a local support function into a globally integrated business partner. This role of globally integrated business partner is a new one for many procurement organizations, but nevertheless it is important in the changing business environment.

Closing out the morning on March 29 is Heidi Landry, CPO of Dow Corning, who will discuss what procurement can do to remain relevant in a business world where change is the only constant. Landry has 20 years of experience in the procurement world, and she has brought that expertise to bear at Dow Corning—which she joined in 2009. Landry is adamant about contributing to the enterprise beyond driving savings. And with years of procurement experience, she has been forced to manage through many different kinds of corporate change. Landry will share how the procurement team at Dow Corning met the challenge to remain vital in the face of shifting corporate priorities, and how to implement those lessons elsewhere.

Final Thoughts

Procurement teams at enterprises large and small find themselves forced to reconsider how they drive value to the organization. With that consideration, the CPO also must determine how their shifting role—and viewpoint—can help bring procurement’s value to the organization into sharper focus. Attending the CPO Rising 2016 Summit can only help with that aim, as Ardent has brought together some of the brightest minds in procurement to share their thoughts, stories, and lessons learned with their peers.


From CFO to CEO: A Conversation with Louie Psallidas of Uno’s (II) – (CPOR-16 Speaker Spotlight)

From CFO to CEO: A Conversation with Louie Psallidas of Uno’s (I) – (CPOR-16 Speaker Spotlight)

CPO Rising 2016 Topic: Procurement-led Innovation

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