SRM Series: #3 Defining SRM

Clients often tell me they start out confused about what is meant by SRM – supplier relationship management. Is it about emotionally intelligent collaboration? Contract management? Performance management? Supplier development? Or something more aspirational, like ‘alliance-building’? For another definition, how about ‘post-contract value management’? This is the task of ensuring

Seven rules for involving senior management

Many supplier managers have aspirations to put their senior leaders in front of the supplier’s directors and VPs. This is often difficult to set up, not least because the perceptions of strategic importance can be very different depending on which side of the relationship you’re on. Nevertheless, bringing senior executives

SRM Series: #2 Who owns the supplier relationship?

The other day I responded to a question from someone in my network who was interested in whether “ownership” of particular suppliers is defined by the sector the buyer is operating in – as if some sectors have a magic ingredient that makes procurement’s role clearer and easier. This question

Government may be exchanging more than it plans to

The Cabinet Office is once again making the news with its Commercial Interchange Programme where suppliers – large and small – can develop closer ties with government by both parties seconding staff into each other’s domains. The idea is that commercial skills and knowledge are developed, with the Cabinet Office’s


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