Category: Information

Information about Procurement & Co.

Strategic Relationship Management Advice

By Pat Ryan – Arvo

Your suppliers are your external manufacturing department. They do what you don’t want to do; because it’s technologically impractical, they are better than you, you are concentrating on other things, or it could tie-up your resources.

FACT: You are trusting them with your future

Developing good connections with suppliers—sometimes called Supplier Relationship Management—is critical to business success.

Businesses are increasingly relying on suppliers to help reduce costs, innovate, improve quality and reduce lead time. Good relationships with suppliers can provide a competitive advantage.

First-rate supplier relations require continuous, long-term effort. Not all suppliers should be treated as special suppliers. Some of the suppliers may not be suitable for developing relationships.

  1. Evaluate all suppliers—Make sure they are the best ones for your business and that their products meet your needs. You want suppliers who are aligned with your strategy.
  2. Integrate key suppliers into your business—Learn how they operate, and make sure your systems work seamlessly with theirs in areas such as invoicing and order fulfilment.
  3. Collaborate on quality improvement, problem-solving and product development—Work together to improve capabilities and adopt best practices on both sides.
  4. Measure performance continually—Have structured ongoing discussions with your key suppliers about how to improve.

Ultimately, the idea is to work together as partners so both sides prosper.

BE BRAVE – NOT ALL COMPANIES CAN DEVELOP AND MAINTAIN A SUPPLIER RELATIONSHIP PROGRAMME.

Sometimes companies focus just on the short term and only demand cost reductions from suppliers, rather than thinking strategically. That doesn’t help in the long run.

Do’s and don’ts of supplier relationships

  1. DO—Take a long-term approach to supplier relationships. Commit to shared prosperity and mutual development. Help suppliers boost their technical and problem-solving capabilities.
  2. DO—Understand in detail how your key suppliers work. See how they operate, and learn their culture to ensure mutual trust and strong partnerships.
  3. DO—Periodically evaluate the performance of key suppliers with scorecards, and periodically scan the market for better and/or more cost-effective alternatives. While you want to nurture strong relationships with suppliers, you don’t want to become captive to them.
  4. DON’T—Focus only on short-term goals, such as cost-cutting. Don’t insist on unreasonable payment terms or pressure suppliers to assume the cost and risk of holding the bulk of your inventory.
  5. DON’T—Focus your efforts on all your suppliers. Save your special collaboration for only a handful of key strategic partners. Anything more is unsustainable.

GDPR Post Brexit

A lot has been said and written on GDPR. At a time when we are just beginning to grasp the fact that ICT cannot be without GDPR, mainly due to the ‘consent’ email bombardment, comes Brexit and the uncertainty of it in relation to GDPR as it is an EU regulation. People and businesses are asking ‘’what will GDPR be like post Brexit?’’ Fortunately, a lot of articles have been written and discussions are going on from different perspectives, GDPR post Brexit won’t be a scenario of ‘’ how to manage your expectations during the first few days, weeks, months of dating’’ rather it is a subject of forward looking, information gathering, be in the know of suggested options especially for companies dealing in B2C or even B2B in case data management dealings don’t go according to plan.

Before going further, here is a brief recap on GDPR for those who need it. In the beginning, the European Union adopted the DGPR (2016) as an EU law on Data protection to provide privacy for all individuals in the EU and the EEA. The regulation which became enforceable beginning of May 2018 has two main priorities, to; give individuals control over their personal data and, to; simplify the regulatory environment for international businesses by unifying the regulation within the EU. GDPR also addresses export of personal data outside the EU and EEA. With Brexit in sight, this is where GDPR post Brexit questions arises, with UK about to become a third country, will the Britain abide by GDPR? What guarantees are there in terms of data privacy? – Whether in terms of B2C or B2B. Individually, people and businesses alike are researching the topic and informing those who are anxious.

Looking for Answers

Questions and answers have been suggested, with the amount of publications on the topic, we are becoming bombarded again. My opinion is to answer GDPR questions whatever perspective, we must go to the heart of GDPR – the principles (the core conditions that governs the regulation GDPR (2016/679) especially the 7th “Accountability”.

ICO wrote about GDPR principles, to be;

  1. Lawfulness, fairness and transparency,
  2. Purpose limitation,
  3. Data minimisation,
  4. Accuracy,
  5. Storage limitation,
  6. Integrity and confidentiality (security),
  7. Accountability.

Monique Magalhaes of Techgenix, in January 2018 wrote and highlighted that – ‘’organisations need to follow these principles when collecting, processing and managing European citizens personal information regardless of whether the business is in EU or elsewhere in the world.’’ I believe this explanation applies to Britain once it becomes third country.

According to another website tripwire.com; there might be a common misapprehension which might be a wishful thinking for some British businesses who don’t want the hassle of achieving GDPR compliance, thinking that UK businesses might not need to comply with GDPR post Brexit as it is an EU regulation. The fact is, currently the UK adopted all the rules of the GDPR into the Data Protection Act 2018 – which means that UK businesses will have to continue complying with the GDPR after Brexit and those that deal with EU citizens have to comply with GDPR directly.

Important for UK businesses to remember; compliance with the key principles is a paramount building block for good data protection practice for those involved. Failure to comply with the principles may lead to substantial fines. Article 83(5) (a) states that infringements of the basic principles for processing personal data are subject to the highest tier of administrative fines. This means a fine of up to €20 million, or 4% of your total worldwide annual turnover, whichever is higher.

Brian Honan of independent.ie writes; GDPR and Brexit will potentially bring many challenges to organisations over the coming years, but proper planning and keeping abreast of how talks regarding data protection post-Brexit will help keep on top of those challenges. This suggests that businesses and the concerned alike need to keep eyes open for the future is unclear.

For more information visit the pages referred;

https://www.dataprotection.ie/

https://www.independent.ie/business/data-sec/gdpr-will-the-uk-still-be-a-safe-place-for-your-data-postbrexit-36741468.html


Contact Us with related queries or to get support for your Strategic Sourcing Brexit risk

Brexit Helpful Tools and Supports

With two years negotiation period since the 2016 Referendum and two further years expected with the transition period, there have been many helpful tools and supports developed to aid businesses navigate the Brexit quagmire. Many of these helpful tools and supports are available free-of-charge, more are highly subsidised or grant-aided while some paid solutions exist also.

As a starting point, Arvo have a range of Brexit specific tools, templates, reports and insights available online here. If you have any queries on these Arvo Tools, feel free to email [email protected] for a prompt response.

While Arvo are aware of many third-party tools and solutions also to support your Brexit risk management, with a selection outlined as follows

Brexit
Helpful
Tool
Description Website
____________
Brexit SM Scorecard (Enterprise Ireland) A Starting Point to help businesses to begin preparing a strategy and ready their teams in terms of planning and shinning a spotlight on some of the key operational areas that may be exposed.https://prepareforbrexit.virtual-adviser.com/

____

____

____
Online
Assessment
Tool
Invest Northern Ireland’s assessment tool covers Business strategy, Operations, Innovation, Sales and Marketing, Finance, People and Management, Legal and regulatory. https://www.investni.com/get-ready-for-brexit/brexit-assessment-tool.html

____

____

____
Tariff
Checker
Intertradeireland provide a quick guide to the potential WTO Tariffs that may be applied post-Brexit.https://intertradeireland.com/brexit/tariff-checker
  HMRC Trade Tariff: look up commodity codes, duty and VAT rates https://www.gov.uk/trade-tariff

____

____

____
Brexit
Online
Toolkit / “Brexit: a guide for your business”
IBEC offers an Online Toolkit to help business preparation online. A Guide for your Business. https://www.accenture.com/ie-en/insight-brexit-guide-your-business

____

____

____
No Deal Brexit Plans /
Brexlist Brexit Checklist /
Brexsure Brexit /
Supply Chain Audit /
Brexit Directory
The Ready for Brexit platform is independent and objective. It aims to help businesses and organisations manage the challenges and opportunities that Brexit brings. https://readyforbrexit.co.uk
PS: Use ARVO190213 as a Discount Code

____

____

____

In addition to the above tools/systems, there is a plethora of information available online with downloadable Templates, Documents and Files from many organisations such as those listed below. Many of these organisations also provide Brexit financial supports, experts, grants and initiatives available to assist most businesses through this unprecedented economic event e.g.

Organisation Description Website

____

____

____
Enterprise Ireland Enterprise Ireland has a wide range of supports, including free Online Courses and Webinars, and fully-funded and partly-funded Consultancy engagements, to enable Irish businesses to take critical action and address their exposure to Brexit https://prepareforbrexit.com

____

____

____
Intertradeireland IntertradeIreland offers 2 Vouchers to provide financial support to help understanding Brexit, Online Courses to help SMEs to prepare for Brexit and beyond, also Tariff Checkers and Events that offer information and Topics about Brexit, advises and outcomes. https://intertradeireland.com/brexit/

____

____

____
Invest Northern Ireland Invest Northern Ireland offers an Online assessment tool, Regional Workshops a financial assistance in form of a Preparation Grant and a one-stop resource of best practice guides, information advice and support to help in preparing for Brexit on their Brexit website. https://www.investni.com/features/invest-northern-ireland-launches-get-ready-for-brexit-campaign.html

____

____

____
Bord Bia Bord Bia offer a Supply Chain Mentoring Program, to identify key challenges with clients supply chain and export markets. Regional Customs Training, which aims to provide practical training on the basic principle and requirements of customs, tariffs and non-EU trade. A Dublin Custom Training trains Clients in all aspects of customs and tariffs management. A Currency Risk Training prepares for buyer negotiations and new business arising from non-Eurozone market opportunities. Supply Chai Workshops are offered too.

____

____

____
Revenue Revenue offers helpful links and Videos on how to deal with the upcoming trade with non-EU Countries, Planning Details and Seminars that prepare and help with Brexit related issues. https://www.revenue.ie/en/customs-traders-and-agents/brexit/index.aspx

____

____

____
HMRC – Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs HMRC offers 2 grants to help with business to complete customs declaration in preparing for the Brexit. Training Grant and IT improvements are covered in those grants. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/grants-for-businesses-that-complete-customs-declarations

____

____

____
NSAI – National Standards Authority of Ireland NSAI offers several factsheets with useful information, downloads from previous Brexit Workshops. https://www.nsai.ie/brexit/

____

____

____
HSA – Health and Safety Authority HSA offers useful information and downloads for informational Sheets and publications about Brexit. https://www.hsa.ie/eng/Topics/Brexit/

____

____

____
SBCI – Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland SBCI in partnership with the Department of Business Enterprise and Innovation (DBEI) offers a Brexit Loan Scheme. The Loan can be used for future working capital requirements, or to fund innovation, change or adaption of the business to mitigate the impact of Brexit. https://sbci.gov.ie/schemes/brexit-loan-scheme

____

____

____
IBEC – Irish Business and Employers Confederation IBEC offers several very informative Guides on the topic of Brexit, Future of Ireland and the EU and the Technology of Ireland and the EU. Several Reports on Brexit and its Future. http://www.ibec.ie/brexit

____

____

____
Local Enterprise Office Local Enterprise Office offers a Currency Risk Management Booklet, a Customs Insight Course, the InterTradeIreland Start to Plan Voucher Scheme, the Brexit SME Scorecard Online Tool, A Brexit Loan Scheme, a Brexit Mentor Programme, the Enterprise Europe Network, Trading Online Voucher Schemes, Training and Management Development Courses, Microfinance Loan, Micro Lean, Co-Innovate Programme, Technical Assistance for Micro-Exporters. https://www.localenterprise.ie/Discover-Business-Supports/Brexit-Information

____

____

____
EU Commission
Information on Brexit
All Information regarding the Brexit on the Website of the European Union Commission.  
https://ec.europa.eu/info/brexit_en

____

____

____
EU Commission 
Brexit Preparedness
The European Union Commission and its Brexit Preparedness Information Site. All Information regarding Brexit and regarding the EU Commission.  
https://ec.europa.eu/info/brexit/brexit-preparedness_en

____

____

____

Contact Us ([email protected]) or the agencies above to get support for your Strategic Sourcing Brexit risk

Past, Present and Future

Arvo Cost Management Energy audits consultancy tactical procurement

Recently the wonderful team at IGNITE in UCC, produced this fantastic infographic documenting the Arvo story from humble supply.ie beginnings to the current range of sourcing, consultancy and training offerings under the Arvo umbrella. Our focus for the past 10 years to “help companies to save time, money and hassle” has not changed but our solutions to address your evolving market needs, have matured with our growth.

In the beginning, our eSourcing platform (supply.ie), was used by over 5,000 Irish businesses to source 3 quotes quickly for goods and services. The success of this simple tendering solution led to an appointment in 2012 to the European Commission e-Tendering Expert Group, which has advised EU Government’s with regards eProcurement. At home, saving SME’s money on Print & Stationery soon led to a demand to reduce costs in other areas, such as Utilities, whereby our Smart Energy Services helped businesses to correct MICs/Tariffs, Group Buy to leverage scale and deliver instant cost savings, while proactive businesses then invest the savings in Energy Efficient Equipment.

Presently, the Arvo business is delivering value for a range of Procurement Stakeholders with;

1. Our Brexit Sourcing Services helping businesses prepare for the imminent supply chain threats posed by Britain’s exit from the EU, especially if a “no deal” or hard-Brexit transpires

2. Our Tendering Services help both buyers and suppliers, by supporting buyers through every stage of the Strategic Sourcing event, while assisting suppliers prepare, identify, qualify and respond professionally to appropriate bid opportunities

3. While our Strategic Procurement Services and Tactical Procurement Supports help both public and private-sector clients, with their strategic focus to deliver long-term value and impact, while our Tactical Procurement expertise supports the day-to- day operational aspects of sourcing and procurement.

While predicting what the future holds is an almost impossible task, but as outlined in this Business & Finance CEO Interview, Arvo’s focus is to grow the Procurement Transformation Institute (PTI), which is a competency centre that provides a gateway to procurement education, thought leadership and training while empowering the buying community. While we will continue to research the merits of creating a decentralised group trading platform with distributed ledger technologies, to enable seamless trading experience for unknown buyers and sellers. Stay tuned for this next (r)evolution…