Tags: Industry Trends

In our recent post “Is there a talent deficit in the Procurement field?”, we addressed the findings from Deloitte that 62% of CPOs do not believe their teams have the skills and capabilities to deliver their procurement strategies, and some of the potential reasons behind their beliefs.

Given this talent deficit facing the Procurement field currently, how can CPOs and organizations find the talent they need to drive their businesses forward?


  1. Utilize outside training to educate the talent you do have. Deloitte found that less than 30% of CPOs are allotting more than 1% of their operating budgets to training. Consider getting your employees certified through reputable agencies such as the Institute of Supply Management (ISM), Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP), or APICS.
  1. Develop a robust internal training program. Look to past winners of the Procurement Leaders “Learning & Development Award” such as Delphi Automotive, Roche, and ABB for inspiration. Delphi, for example, promotes a culture of deep learning through Delphi University “which offers courses in all aspects of Supply Chain Management, [it] is a catalyst for knowledge creation and dissemination. A wide variety of courses are available to SCM employees globally, and it’s one way we instill a culture of deep learning and innovation in our teams.”
  1. Forge partnerships with leading universities for entry-level talent needs. Align with universities like Michigan State, Penn State, MIT, University of Tennessee, and other universities paving the way in Supply Chain education. The creation of Leadership and Management trainee programs is not only attractive to upcoming graduates, but promotes stronger retention among new-hires and builds robust succession plans.
  1. Look outside of your Supply Chain for talent. Deloitte’s study found that 2/3 of CPOs within the manufacturing industry specifically identify training their teams on technical procurement skills as a priority.  Look internally at commodity specific subject matter experts and engineers to fill a technical procurement need you may have, or look to outsource your Procurement through a 3rd party sourcing firm that has strong technical expertise in an area you require.
  1. Create a strong value proposition for candidates to join your organization. Given the shortage of qualified talent within the industry, high caliber candidates have the luxury of being selective. A strong value proposition could include robust employee development plans, competitive compensation and benefits, and various perks and incentives to boost morale and improve the culture.
  1. Utilize a Procurement focused recruiting organization. Given the talent shortage, most high performing candidates are passive job seekers that you will not find through standard job postings. Using a specialized recruiting team with industry knowledge (whether internal or external) will allow you to tap into their vast networks and experience to engage with top-tier talent meeting your criteria.

While each of these 6 areas may come at an expense, every CPO knows the monetary value a highly talented individual can bring to a Procurement organization. With increasing pressure to deliver year over year savings, lead time reductions, process improvements, and technology initiatives, the demand for high caliber Procurement professionals is only increasing. How is your organization building their capabilities to manage this trend?

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