top of page

A word from our Founder

I've been asked the same question for more than 20 years in procurement - "Why is procurement always late?"

 

In my pursuit of continuous improvement, and in seeing what 'good' looks like, I discovered the answer to this question. Working within teams to prioritise transparency, efficiency and trust, we created a partnering ecosystem. This ecosystem served a vision of improving supply chain management practices and putting in place new ways to integrate our partners for success.

 

Through measuring our performance, relying on data to pinpoint areas for improvement, we used facts, insight and data to challenge existing procurement practices, often saying what others wouldn’t dare to say.

To validate my theory, I reached out to my network, embedded myself within leadership teams, created direct access opportunities to influence decision makers, aligned myself with knowledge from sustainability subject matter experts and engaged with academics. The facts were clear. Construction projects are complex, and the current procurement model only serves to exacerbate this complexity. It results in low levels of integration and allows a “lowest cost” mentality to prevail.

 

When Covid-19 hit, I carried on, like most did through those difficult days. I often felt I was fighting a losing battle with the volume and scale of the project I was working on, combined with the time and cost challenges faced by our industry. I was slaving away, day and night, leading a team of 34 procurement professionals on Europe’s largest infrastructure project (HS2), procuring £1b from home, and I felt unfulfilled.

 

On 3rd December 2020 I registered Smart Procurement Group with Companies House. I had set a new course. Smart Pro would become a vehicle for change to fulfil my new purpose.

At the start we decided to do something very different. We reached out within my well-established network of suppliers to see procurement from their perspective.

 

We identified quick wins to improve and reverse engineer procurement productivity to meet the challenge, whilst also uncovering the importance of aligned culture and behaviours in strategically important relationships that gave meaning and purpose to aligned business growth opportunities. We also learnt a huge lesson - that there has never been a clearer mandate for using SMEs and supporting their economic growth, which we believe will provide many of the answers to our challenges.

 

We had clarity of our purpose, until the penny dropped - we had to also be advocates and the vehicle for change by embedding sustainable procurement as an additional core central theme, alongside integration, transparency and trust.

 

Our planet has finite resources and we are in a climate crisis. Procurement has a pivotal role to play in managing and mitigating the unprecedented affects from many disruptions we face globally, but if we don’t focus on lowering embodied carbon now we will fail on our ultimate mission.

 

Our mission is to improve construction procurement, by delivering procurement solutions that change the dialogue and deliver tomorrow’s sustainable procurement today.

bottom of page