In today’s environment, Purchasing Professionals are asked to do more than negotiate prices, they are asked to create value, or better co-create value. This sustainable way of working adds another dimension to procurement, by using insight to inspire new business thinking and ideas. Hence, the topic of the 4th annual Young Purchasing Professionals (YPP) conference, on October 3rd 2014 was ‘Co- Creation’. And, as co-creation is ruling the agenda, what better way to organize this event than having DSM and FrieslandCampina co-host this year’s event together. Almost 100 open-minded, and curious procurement professionals from 50 different companies including a selection of 10 DSM Young Purchasing Professionals gathered in Amersfoort for the purchasing event of the year.
Cees ‘t Hart, CEO at FrieslandCampina, opened the conference by sharing the development of FrieslandCampina in driving co-creation within their company. In the past, the company drove innovation and sustainability on their own, today they co-create with key-suppliers and proactively think of the next step. ‘We are working as a team based company with a defense, midfield and attack’ states Cees ‘t Hart. ‘All departments work together on óne field instead of different fields.’ Johan Keerberg, CPO FrieslandCampina, continued with his insights on what, why and how companies co-create. “Co-Creation can only work if both parties have clearly aligned their mutual interest and objectives upfront and if the overarching ambition level is a WIN.”
For Nike, driving impact through co-creation is also an important way of working within the procurement department. Nike’s Daniela Weitmann, head of procurement Europe, elaborated on how Nike transformed its procurement by changing the perception, drive cross-functional collaboration and build capabilities of a winning team.
Next, the floor was given to DSM’s High performance expert, Paul Rulkens. With statements like “When we hit a wall, only 3% starts to do things differently, You can be part of the 3% or be part of the 97% and work for the 3%” he infused the audience with plenty of food for thought. His presentation was one of the main topics that dominated conversations during lunchtime.
Before the young professionals where send off to their pre-registered workshops, the wisdom of the crowd was unleashed. In two seconds, the venue transformed into small groups in which YPP’s shared co-creating experiences. For many of DSM’s professionals the co-creating stories of others underlined that DSM is still one step ahead in the game.
After an energizing day, it was time to mingle with like-minded colleagues in the business which hopefully led to many new co-creations. According to DSM’s young procurement professional Xiao Wu, Sourcing Analyst Physical Distribution; ‘it was a successful event which provided an open platform for purchasing professions to interact, share and inspire each other. Each organization has its own strategy and style. It is good to leave our way of thinking behind once in a while, reach out to peers and be open minded to the new developments in the purchasing world.’
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