The whole point of setting corporate procurement policies is to save money and streamline procedures, but if a recent survey is any indication, those policies are having exactly the opposite effect. Respondents to a survey conducted by consulting company Accenture overwhelmingly agreed that procurement policies were not accomplishing what policymakers had hoped to achieve. A whopping 75 percent of executivelevel policy users said they were dissatisfied with their company's procurement policies. (The frustration is apparently confined to the users, however. Only 12 percent of the policymakers themselves claimed to be dissatisfied.)
The main complaint seems to be that corporate policymakers are too focused on cost cutting and fail to give employees the leeway they need to do their jobs to the best of their ability. The result is widespread frustration and reduced productivity. If corporations fail to address the underlying problems, Accenture warns, they could face a widespread exodus of procurement specialists once the job market opens up.
Where do these policies need improvement? More than half of the survey respondents said they could be more productive if they had access to a greater variety of products and services. As for other problems in the procurement process: 43 percent said corporate policies for identifying vendors were inadequate, 26 percent felt they had no good way of tracking the status of a purchase, and 20 percent said they ran into difficulty getting approvals from superiors.