APE 2024

Adria Procurement Event 2024: “The Future of Procurement: Young Generations and Digitalization”

This year’s two-day Adria Procurement Event truly raised the bar compared to the previous year. In its second edition, held in the beautiful hall of the Royal Hotel, once again brought together numerous experts from procurement, supply chain, and suppliers. More than 110 participants from the largest domestic and regional companies had the opportunity to listen to inspiring speakers, participate in workshops, and connect with potential partners.

The theme of this year’s event, “360° Procurement: Challenges, Strategies, and Innovations” covered all its perspectives through inspiring lectures by top speakers: digitalization, sustainability, risks and compliance, introduction of new approaches and business models, coping with changes, agile strategies, the importance of collaboration with suppliers and partners in the supply chain, as well as building bridges between departments within the company.

The first day of the conference was opened by Vesna Jungić, one of the founders of the Croatian Association for Procurement Activities and the executive director of Franta d.o.o. She presented the activities and plans of the association aimed at promoting procurement in domestic and international circles.


Savings and Technology Mastery

Ivana Škegro Filipović, from Bjelin Spačva company, in her presentation, showcased practical examples of how to ensure savings without compromising the quality of products and revealed the importance of procurement in every company in a unique and witty way.

Goran Marinov, Director of Procurement and General Affairs at Raiffeisen Bank Croatia, delighted the audience with his lecture “Mastering Technology – How to Overcome Barriers in Implementing Procurement Innovations,” in which he discussed experiential examples of key obstacles that often arise when attempting to adopt innovations in the procurement process and concluded that it is important to understand the organization in which we work.

This was followed by an interactive workshop “Navigating Through Changes Faster and Easier” by Amira and Ajla Mulalić from Invision Consulting, which immediately connected all participants with each other. When was the last time you genuinely laughed? What advice would you give to your 20-year-old self? – were just some of the questions participants had to answer to each other. The conclusion of the workshop was that change is the only constant, resistance should be expected and prepared for, but we are the ones who manage the change process.

Sustainability as a Burning Topic in 2024

An important current topic – sustainability and ESG reporting are increasingly emphasized, as well as European Union regulations. Andrea Hegedušić from Muraplast brilliantly conveyed experiences on how and why, as the best sustainable company in Croatia, they implemented ESG into business and what role procurement played in that. She emphasized that the Management must be involved, that ESG is a significant investment that requires defining a team and setting short and measurable goals that need to be clearly communicated to everyone in the company. “It is no longer a question of whether to be sustainable. The question is how sustainable your company can be” – she concluded.

IT expert Milan Ora from Lognet continued in the same tone, discussing how digital tools are changing the landscape of the procurement industry, enabling companies not only to reduce costs but also to achieve a higher level of sustainability in their business operations. As he says, customer orientation, adaptability to change, ESG, and digitalization are mega-trends in the supply chain that lead us to break down information silos and calculate carbon footprint.

Tarik Filipović caused a great surprise and laughter with the monodrama ‘Ćiro’

One of the biggest surprises was Tarik Filipović performing the monodrama “Ćiro”. What do procurement and football have in common? This performance focused on the character of a person who, thanks solely to resourcefulness and initiative, rises and gains reputation, and we can say that these are two skills that are certainly needed in the procurement world. The hall echoed with laughter, and the big applause at the end showed that the participants enjoyed it.

One of the organizers of this event, Ensolva engagement manager Hari Zamlić, brought a touch of fun to the procurement topic with his lecture “What Game Are You Playing?” where he compared procurement to married life, all with the theory of games, which is widely applicable.

Ana Macura from Cemex continued the theme of communication challenges in the supply chain, portraying how information travels from manufacturer to consumer within the supply chain and how to communicate between different levels. It is important to question ourselves; what impression do we leave, are we cooperative, and do people think we are the ones solving or creating problems – she concluded.

Jasmina Marić Cvijetinović introduced participants to experiential knowledge where she applied strategies and tactics to achieve results in procurement. As she says, “We must be solution-oriented, achieve results, after which trust and respect come.”

In the final presentation, Dominik Dragičević from Coreline introduced participants to the dynamic world of organizing business conferences, explaining why it is important to organize conferences to improve business and how to do it.

How to Encourage Changes and Reshape the Perception of Procurement?

A particularly interesting panel discussion on the important topic of How to Encourage Changes and Reshape the Perception of Procurement rounded off the Adria Procurement Event. With his witty approach, the panel was moderated by Hari Zamlić, and experts with years of experience in procurement Vesna Jungić, Biserka Orešković, and Marina Lindič discussed ways to present procurement as an activity to younger generations and work on making procurement interesting to young people, the importance of digitalization, and their own experiences from practice on how the changes went and whether there were any. The conclusion was that procurement needs to be talked about loudly, and such conferences are an excellent channel for shaping the perception of procurement.

Second Day of the Event – “The Vision Comes from Within”

A unique opportunity to participate in the workshop titled “The Vision Comes from Within” was limited to a certain number of participants on the second day of the conference. In the beautiful ambiance of Vinarija Tomaz, with the tasting of premium wines and Istrian delicacies overlooking the endless Istrian vineyards, under the leadership of Amira and Ajla Mulalić from Invision Consulting, participants entered a time machine that led them to their 10 years older selves, and the insights they gained will remain a small secret recorded in their mobile phones. What we learned is that we all already have knowledge and wisdom within us, we just need to recognize them.?

The Adria Procurement Event has shown that procurement is important, fun, and by no means monotonous, and according to the reaction of the participants and their interaction, we can say that it once again achieved its goal.

We look forward to the next Adria Procurement Event!


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