The climax to the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply’ (“CIPS”) five-day distinguished lectures by Dr. Douglas Boateng took place at the UNISA’S Graduate School of Business Leadership (SBL) in Midrand Johannesburg in August, 2011. The marathon tour was the 1st of its kind in Africa and the Middle East. Hundreds of private and public sector supply chain, procurement and other professionals attended the lecture series; on the theme “the changing role of procurement and supply chain management in business and society”.
“The thought-provoking presentation by Dr. Boateng highlighted the ever increasingly strategic role procurement and supply chain management has to play in government, public and private sector organizations,” remarked Andre Coetzee the Managing Director of CIPS Southern Africa. According to Boateng, there were too many practitioners but not enough professionals. This he said was causing major competitive and service delivery challenges for companies and governments in the emerging world. In support of Dr. Boateng’ suppositions, Mr. Majozi Sithole, the Minister of Finance in Swaziland emphasized the urgent need for the up skilling of current practitioners. “Most independent reports today confirm that supply chain management is among the fastest growing vocations in the world…Unfortunately unlike other professions there is no official license to practice. He further called on all related professional bodies to come together to ensure standards of professionalism. Professor Reckson Thakhathi, Dean of the Faculty of Management at the University of Fort Hare reaffirmed Dr. Boateng’ view that supply chain management of which procurement forms an integral part was the key to solving a lot of the emerging world challenges.
Therefore CEO’s and policy makers that continue to ignore it did so at their own peril. Based on current global trends in CEO appointments, Dr. Boateng believes that discerning procurement and supply chain professionals shall increasingly be called upon to take the helm within companies and government departments because of their vast strategic, governance and performance driven experience and mindset.
“CIPS and Dr Boateng must be commended for putting together the 1st supply chain related distinguished lecture tour. As the largest postgraduate leadership development institution on the continent, we are proud to be collaboratively associated with the parties to address the major skills challenges in South Africa and in the rest of the continent” says Ozias Ncube, Senior lecturer and Head of operations and supply chain management at UNISA SBL – Africa’s largest post graduate management school. “This public lecture was indeed very inspirational!
One is glad to have been part of the audience. The buoyant reactions from the delegates clearly indicate that the event could become ‘the must be there’ annual lecture for industry executives, professionals and academics with interest in the subject matter” commented Mr. Zak Van Gordon, Chairman of the Gauteng branch of CIPS and an executive at SAP – the largest enterprise software organization in the world. Judging by the overwhelming success and feedback, organisers are confident that the distinguished lecture tour in partnership with Dr. Douglas Boateng shall become an annual event with potential extensions across the African continent.