Team Procurement: measure capabilities and build bench strength. Building bench strength is a way CPO’s can ensure their procurement team has the built-in knowledge skills and experience it needs to succeed in their organization, both today and tomorrow.
Successful CPO’s excel at building bench strength and succession management to spot the high potentials, identify strengths and weaknesses and put in place development programs to address the capability gaps. This is critical for sustainable success.
It is also a great way to increase engagement with employees and drive up employee retention.
By investing in your procurement teams’ development you communicate to them that they are valued by the organization. Here is some practical advice to help procurement leaders build their teams’ bench strength:
- Know your organization’s core competencies and competitive priorities. They are the skills and priorities that underpin your organization’s competitive advantage.
- Understand and build the competencies that are critical for your employees’ roles to contribute to the competitive priorities of your organization. If job descriptions are not current, or don’t seem to be the best fit, you need to update them.
- Establish a competency baseline to establish the capability gaps by individual, by role, by competency across the organization etc.
- When an employee’s capability in a particular competency needs development, make sure you assign them a development plan that will build capability in that competency.
- Don’t make the mistake of equating training courses with building capability. If employees don’t get the opportunity to apply learning then they will quickly forget what they learned and the training will be ineffective. Use multiple platforms for training such as e-learning, virtual classroom, mentoring and coaching as well as traditional methods to reinforce learning. But most critically make sure you provide your employee with opportunities to apply new knowledge in their own environment.
- When managers are assigning employee’s goals, always make sure employees have the knowledge, skills and experience to successfully achieve the goal. If they don’t, make sure you put capability development plans and support in place to set them up for success.
- Make sure your employee assessment system can identify who your high-potential employees are, who your high-performers are and who’s at risk of leaving. Then make sure you have action plans in place for each category.
- Engage with your employees about their career aspirations. Where their plans align with organizational needs or focus, make sure you provide development opportunities to help prepare them for progression.
- Do you know what your budget is for employee development? If you don’t, find out. Once you know what it is, make use of it.
- Follow up with employees after they’ve completed a learning activity to see if it was valuable to them. Use further assessments to measure the learning that has taken place since the baseline was established and use the data to engage employees to provide further development opportunities to improve their performance.
By following these guidelines CPO’s can create the kind of leadership and procurement capability that delivers sustainable business results. They also narrow the range in performance in key roles, minimize attrition among top performers, and promote a high internal hiring rate.
Nuff said …
Purchasing Practice has developed the iProcure platform to provide a systematic process for collecting t aggregated data about your teams’ knowledge and skills in the competencies that matter for your organization and use this data to develop plans to bring your capability development programs to life.
If you would like to learn more about iProcure contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
or register for a free demo @ http://www.purchasingassessments.com/