A world of contrasts

Michael Power is the editor of PurchasingB2B magazine.
Michael Power is the editor of PurchasingB2B magazine.

From the August 2016 print edition
Today’s business world moves so fast, it seems to shrink and get bigger at the same time. Challenges lead to opportunities, while situations designed to provide opportunities—business travel, for example—are also full of risks for both the organization and the employees doing the travelling.
On the one hand, the global economy—and sourcing from across that globe—has lengthened supply chains while bringing more goods and services to consumers than ever before.
The accumulation of massive amounts of information (known as big data) has led to insights we couldn’t have arrived at otherwise. At the same time, all this information raises questions regarding what that data actually means and how it should be used.
These are some of the contrasts in the world of procurement and supply chain today that you’ll find in this issue of PurchasingB2B. On page 8, we take a look at how global sourcing has changed in recent years, including the ways in which technology affects the process. We also explore how big data (page 11) is providing organizations with opportunities to shape customer decisions in a way that access to information never has before.
Along with this coverage, I’m also pleased to profile Larry Berglund, SCMP, MBA, FSCMA, in this issue. Larry was awarded the designation of fellow at the SCMA National Conference in Niagara Falls in June. Each year, the Supply Chain Management Association recognizes individuals and organizations for their contributions to the field, through innovation, dedication and leadership. The distinction is the highest honour that SCMA gives to its members, and Larry has been a practitioner and educator in the field throughout his long career. I’ve been PurchasingB2B’s editor for six years and have been pleased to have Larry as a regular contributor and interview subject for much of that time. He as always been generous with his time and knowledge of procurement and supply chain and never misses a deadline when contributing articles—an important attribute in any writer. PurchasingB2B is happy to feature him on page 14.
Along with Larry’s honour, TELUS won the Supply Chain Management Excellence Award for using its supply chain management to enhance its competitive advantage. The company has recently developed several initiatives to transform its procurement and supply chain functions. Hats off to Larry and TELUS.
As always, I hope that you enjoy this issue. As a side note, another contrast familiar to most of us is the short Canadian summer, so I hope that you enjoy get a chance to enjoy it.