Inflation, instability in economic growth, energy prices, the management of raw materials, tensions in logistics flows, the effects of the war in Ukraine... continue to affect the value chain. We raise the following questions:
1.- How do the events of the last three years continue to affect the Purchasing departments, from the Covid pandemic to the war in Ukraine, including energy prices,
the lack of products from Asia and the tensions in logistics flows?
2.- How do these factors, as well as others such as inflation or the rise in interest rates,
influence the so-called Purchasing managers index?
3.- Has this combination of circumstances, unexpected in many cases, led to a reconsideration of the Purchasing function in terms of sources of supply and visibility of
the supply chain? Is there a trend to increase supply points in Europe or in areas such as
4.- What impact can trends that are transforming the sector such as electrification,
connectivity, digitization or sustainability have on Purchasing?
5.- How is the Purchasing function changing concepts such as interaction in the cloud,
the blockchain or even the metaverse?
Ana Belén González Veganzones, Country Purchasing Head Alliance Renault Nissan Mitsubishi (APO) in Spain, Renault Group
1.- The changing and difficult current context continues to greatly affect Purchasing activity. Although it is true that in these years we have learned to adapt quickly and solve difficulties, it is still very difficult to anticipate and contain the behaviour of the markets. However, these difficulties must be accepted as real challenges and opportunities for change to improve our supply chain and the way we work: seek clean energy solutions, optimize our flows by reducing our carbon footprint, for example.
2.- Our production volumes have managed to stabilize despite the fact that the semiconductor situation is not yet complete. However, the market continues to demand products and we are a fundamental piece when it comes to improving their profitability.
The PMI is still representative but in such a changing environment our goal is to ensure a robust, sustainable and profitable supply chain for all. All these exogenous factors that are also almost always visualize force us to be continuously creative in the search for solutions together with our suppliers and technical departments.
3.- We have had to rethink practically everything. Secure our sources of supply and collaborate in the financial robustness of all. Indeed, developing a robust industrial ecosystem around our factories is a positive way of seeking solutions to the different adversities that we have to solve.
4.- More than trends, we see it as opportunities for development and improvement. They have come to stay. First we have had to develop our skills to be able to know what we need, what we should buy and how we want to do it. We have also had to develop our supplier panels to ensure skills, competitiveness, and innovation.
There are many companies that have decided to do their business with digitization and sustainability as pillars. This is good for the overall development of the sector and I think it makes an important contribution to guaranteeing the continuity of our activity.
5.- I think many of these concepts help improve the efficiency of the function, our agility in finding competitive solutions and interacting with our partners and suppliers. We are able to exchange more complete and detailed information much faster, and visualize the result more robustly. Undoubtedly a help and opportunity for transformation and improvement.
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