On Tuesday 23rd March, over 40 MSc Global Logistics Operations and Supply Chain Management students studying at Northumbria University, London attended a virtual guest lecture: Agility in Procurement – Just Talk or Reality, delivered by Mirko Kleiner, president of the Lean-Agile Procurement Alliance.

Mirko is also the Thought Leader in Lead-Agile Procurement, CIPS Award Winner 2018, an international speaker and co-founder of Flowdays – The Agile Cooperative. He supports customers as an Agile Enterprise Coach on their journeys to create a positive impact for their employees, customers and shareholders.

The highly anticipated 1-hour event inspired the students. Award winning Mirko gave an insight into how to produce an effective, well thought out procurement canvas. An agile contract that can cut down lead-time from 6-8 months to as little as 4 weeks, thus improving time-to-market by 400-800%!

Relating to the effects of the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, Mirko emphasised on the importance of new, more agile, approaches in procurement. With the challenges faced throughout 2020, it became apparent that agility is powerful and businesses now require fast feedback and are much more adaptable as a whole. This therefore concluded that speed is now essential for procurement.

He gave some valuable advice to the students:

“To improve your time to market – from your idea to first value – set up an agile, cross-functional team that is empowered by main stakeholders. Ensure you gather needs from real users, involving individuals across the wider team and optimise transparency. Bring in a social and cultural fit for the people and resources who work on the project, as this will not only create a strong extended team, but is a key element to your success.”

Morgan Fakorede, one of the students who attended the guest lecture said:

“The guest lecture was great; the presenter was excellent in his presentation and knowledgeable about the topic. Some interesting examples were given about Lean and Agility and how it can impact an organisation supply chain positively was quite clear and understandable. Mirko explained how companies can incorporate the Agility in Procurement framework and how it can help to minimise operational mishaps or disruption in their supply chain which will be a great benefit, especially to oil and gas companies.”

Overall, the event was a great success. The students were highly engaged and welcomed the opportunity to ask questions and gain advice from an expert within this field, with the additional bonus of being able to relate to real-time examples.

For more information about the MSc Global Logistics Operations and Supply Chain Management course, visit our course page.

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