Established in 1957, the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) is the world’s centre of cooperation in the nuclear field. It was set up as the world´s "Atoms for Peace" organization within the United Nations family. The Agency works with its Member States and multiple partners worldwide to promote safe, secure and peaceful nuclear technologies. Based in Vienna, Austria, in 2005 the IAEA won the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of its work and achievements.
“We look at how a country uses nuclear technology and we make sure they use it in the safest possible way,” says Christian Gronnerod, Procurement Specialist at IAEA. “Procurement is an extremely important function for us. It doesn’t matter that we are a not for profit agency, we still face the same issues and challenges as our peers do in the private sector. We are all trying to create value.”
An active member of Procurement Leaders, Christian knew the IAEA team would benefit from access to Procurement Leaders’ resources, tools and expertise and was instrumental in ensuring that the group upgraded to receive premium Procurement Leaders resources.
“I knew from personal experience that Procurement Leaders is an invaluable source for market intelligence and that it is a fantastic learning platform,” explains Christian. “I was adamant that IAEA would have the opportunity to draw upon their knowledge and analysis.
“Membership helps us to understand the pertinent issues within the industry as procurement moves from a back office function to a more strategic function. Procurement Leaders highlights how other companies are handling this transition, giving us lessons we can apply to our own situation.”
Both Christian and the IAEA team are keen to engage with their peers and regularly frequent Procurement Leaders’ events, networking sessions and seminars.
“Attending Procurement Leaders events enables us to meet and speak with others who have been on the same journey we have,” says Christian. “Networking not only helps us form the right connections, it also reminds us that we are not alone. There is always someone who can help us or push us forward.”
Another fundamental aspect of membership for IAEA is the direct access it provides to senior and experienced experts in the procurement profession. Procurement Leaders’ ‘Ask the Community’ tool, where members can gain advice and guidance from a panel of senior practitioners, is a particularly favoured resource.
“The ‘Ask the Community’ feature is invaluable,” notes Christian. “It means we can tap into a wealth of expertise we wouldn’t otherwise have access to. We see Procurement Leaders as a learning forum that helps people to share insights and knowledge. This is especially important if you don’t have access to a lot of information internally, which is often the case with not for profit groups.
“It is great that you can ask someone with the technical and professional know-how what they would do when facing a certain challenge. Someone who has been there and succeeded and is willing to share lessons learned.