“All grown-ups were once children… But only few of them remember it.”
(Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
Are procurement and creativity really miles away, seen as two incompatible, contradictory concepts? We definitely don’t agree with that. In fact, creativity is one of the essential skills of an individual that separates excellence from mediocrity. Innovation and creativity are extremely important in almost every aspect of a human life. Why are they being put aside in the procurement world then?
In the business world, creativity is often unfairly neglected and cramped up by default procedures and generally accepted business patterns. The task of each procurement professional is to influence the supply market and create competitive advantages for the benefit of its stakeholders. Such a profession requires understanding and analyzing the market, as well as possessing outstanding business skills but also – creativity!
What’s creativity at all?
That’s the ability of creating new ideas in order to solve complex problems effectively. Today’s opinion is that there are two types of people: creative and non-creative ones. On the other hand, psychologists believe creativity is the skill every person has since birth, which means everyone has unlimited access to that gift but some people simply use it less.
“Creativity is seeing patterns that others don’t and effectively communicating them.”
(David Meerman Scott)
Nowadays, stress and chronic lack of time leave no room for creative thinking. It’s easier and quicker to accept existing behavior patterns than constantly innovate and search for new solutions. However, lack of creativity is bad – both for an individual and a company.
But… How can creativity be applied to procurement?
Procurement (as any other department within the company) cannot achieve outstanding results by constantly following the same routine and conventional paths. In fact (although at first glance it doesn’t seem so), successful procurement really does require coming up with new, creative solutions.
On the other hand, we all know procurement professionals are often stressed and overloaded with paperwork, experiencing chronic lack of time, and having no room left for thinking outside the box. One way of solving this problem is the implementation of a procurement software solution such as Ensolva, which will facilitate creating, exchanging, storing and processing procurement data, as well as accelerate communication and analysis, generate time savings and minimize errors. Implementing the right procurement software will give you the time needed for creative thinking and searching for new solutions, which will ultimately bring numerous benefits not only for you but also for your company.
“Like anyone else, stakeholders want to succeed. They are looking to Procurement to help them achieve that by leveraging the supply markets”, says Armand Brevig, Managing Director of Procurement Cube. Procurement professionals are the link between enterprise goals and capacity, opportunities and innovations on the market. Such a profession requires tons of creativity, although sometimes it doesn’t seem so.
When facing a problem or new situation, put your usual procurement thinking aside for a moment and keep your mind open for new ideas: creativity encourages the creation of solutions that did not exist before. Think of solutions as a consultant, not strictly as a procurement officer. This way, you will be able to make the Procurement department an added value for your business – not an added weight.
“Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something.”
Let this quote be the guideline for achieving excellence in your business. Give space to your creative side and look at things from another angle. Let your procurement software do the operational job. This way, you’ll have enough time to think about the goals of your business and, on the other hand, watch the market. Connect these two things and success is guaranteed!