The ‘new norm’ in procurement: Protect, communicate and innovate

Disruptive Innovation

Procurement Leaders’ three-day React & Interact event offered an impressive line-up of presenters and it was exciting to kick off the second day by hearing from Heineken CPO Hervé Le Faou and Ruth Bromley, director of global procurement enablement, who shared their experiences of guiding the drinks company through the Covid-19 crisis. It was great to hear what they have done as a business since the virus started to provide greater transparency and clarity to the C-suite through business intelligence reporting dashboards. They’ve also put a lot of effort into keeping the community strong – internal, cross-functional and supplier – all as a single, collaborative community with procurement standing tall in the middle.


“Never waste a good crisis and we wouldn’t be doing well if we didn’t ride the wave to help accelerate the company towards a more innovative and sustainable future’

Hervé Le Faou, CPO, Heineken


Our partners at Bain & Company then hosted an exciting panel during which industry experts and CPOs deliberated how supply chain risk can most effectively be managed – a topic very close to everyone’s hearts, now more than ever. The panel agreed that procurement’s role in supporting the business is to contribute to better transparency and put in place clear processes and platforms that ensure resilience on the critical parts of the supply chain, underpinned by a commercially sensitive perspective on expenditure.


"We’re going to see a shift from daily firefighting and managing risk to being more strategic about managing that risk and creating value for the rest of the business… which includes responsible sourcing and making sure we’re doing so in a responsible way"

Adam Weisswasser, SVP global supply chain, AngloGold Ashanti

“There’s no one plan that you can look to, you need to do scenario planning to see through the range of possible scenarios and how to plan for any of those outcomes"

Chuck Miller, partner, Bain & Co


The insights didn’t stop there. Shahid Javed, global CPO at JLL, shared the exciting journey his team has been on. The function has rapidly pivoted to address sudden changes and continues to adapt and reimagine, through partnerships with clients and deep engagement with key suppliers, to reimagine how it will provide services that fit the needs of the new world.


"We see this as a journey rather than as just an event. it was a shock at first, but then we thought through the response and continue to think through the ongoing steps and responses"

Shahid Javed, global CPO, JLL


We then heard from Madeleine Baker, director, procurement – IT, external labor and business products and services, and Mariam Saad, director, from Telus Corporation, who shared how the telecoms company has adapted in the face of the challenges brought on by Covid-19 and how the function has continued to provide value to the business.


“We have never been more connected with our partners – we’ve worked with our partners on where we can stop on certain projects and deploy more rapidly on others, and relooking at our procedures. Our partners were pivotal in our response to the situation, and we recognise that”

Mariam Saad, director, Telus Corporation


A whole-hearted thank you to all of our excellent presenters who shared their journeys and lessons learned with us today, and to all of you who took time out to join us for the discussion.


This article is a piece of independent writing by a member of Procurement Leaders’ content team.


Geraldine Craven
Posted by Geraldine Craven

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