Daily Archives: September 1, 2011

Good Public Procurement Recommendations from the McClelland Report, Part III

It may have been written five years ago, but the recommendations from the McClelland Report, which inspired Scotland Public Procurement to new levels of efficiency and performance, are as poignant today as they were then. These recommendations include:

  • Procurement “Centres of Expertise” should be established on a commodity-by-commodity basis.
    And these centres of expertise, which can be cross-disciplinary should be coordinated by a centre of excellence.
  • It is obvious that there is a level of mandatory compliance required for the effective operation of the [contracts] model described above.
    Projected cost avoidance is only realized if the plan is followed.
  • A Charter for Suppliers should be established for the complete public sector in Scotland. It should essentially describe the sector’s commitment to suppliers by defining the generic standards which suppliers can expect from the operation of public-sector procurement and in turn what will be expected of them as suppliers to the sector.
    Suppliers should know what to expect and what to deliver.
  • There should be total transparency in connection with procurement decisions.
    Hidden opportunities are lost opportunities.
  • There should be a review of non-core activities to establish candidates for outsourcing evaluation.
    Remember, outsourcing doesn’t necessarily mean offshoring. You can outsource to an operation down the street. Outsourcing is about doing what makes financial sense. Letting someone do non-core activities that they are better at than you so that you can do what you’re good at.
  • A clear and unambiguous central information systems strategy for the Scottish Public Sector would deliver major benefits in terms of effectiveness of services, staff productivity and overall cost, including improved benefits to procurement.
    Good technology enables good processes and good results. Plus, good technology enables good data, which enables good data analysis, which leads the way to good results.

Your Manufacturing Is Lean, But Are Your Communications?

A recent article over on Industry Week on how Lean Communication Strategy Can Bolster Marketplace Position asked a great question:

      How does a manufacturer implement external communication initiatives without compromising performance or proprietary information?

Because, as the article points out, those companies that can elevate their brands and voices can also leverage incremental revenue streams.

So how does a company implement these external communication initiatives? According to the article, the answer lies in a lean model that unites functions; mirrors the manufacturer’s approach to efficiency and effectiveness; and utilizes QC initiatives that ensure accurate information is dispensed while trade secrets are not. In other words, through a lean communication strategy.

So how does one implement a lean communication strategy? According to the author, it’s effectiveness, prioritization, and ongoing analysis to ensure that the answers to the following questions are always available so that the correct message is always conveyed.

  • What is the value of the story?
    Will it support new business initiatives, influence public policy, establish the brand, burst with innovation, or echo CSR?
  • Who needs to hear the story?
    A niche market, the entire industry, or the public at large?
  • What is the best way to tell the story to the intended audience?
    General press release? Senior officer? One-on-one interview with the innovator?
  • What is the best channel for the story?
    Traditional news sources like radio, TV, or newspapers? Industry specific magazines? Social Media? Sales collateral through targeted channels?
  • Is there a strategic time to tell the story?
    That would enhance a new product launch or business expansion?
  • Who forms the review, vetting, and approval team?

The answers to these questions allow for the development, and deployment, of focussed communications that gather attention without wasting time and resources (to flood the market with messaging that is indistinguishable from the rest of the background noise).

It’s a logical application of lean. And hopefully Supply Management is involved to direct Marketing to the right innovations to focus on.