Procurement & Supply Chain – Market and Hiring Trends 2022
Welcome to our first newsletter for 2022 highlighting Procurement and Supply Chain hiring trends in Quarter One.
It has been another buoyant quarter in the Procurement and Supply Chain sector. We have been busy placing candidates in the financial services consulting, retail and energy and utilities sectors. We also have a number of active searches in the Construction and FM sectors. There are plenty of opportunities for the procurement community to help organisations not just to achieve savings but also to help mitigate risk in these turbulent times. Procurement Leaders are being called upon to help businesses get more support from suppliers to help them achieve their long-term goals. As we have mentioned previously executives need to be able to show that they can adapt to changing circumstances. This is also true with technology. A Google Search on procurement reviews will show pages on how to implement the latest technology into procurement departments to help with automation. It is an interesting time to be a part of this most important sector.
Banking and Financial Services
The Banking and Financial services sector continues to be busy in the area of procurement and supply chain hiring. We have made several placements with new and existing clients. The placements have been evenly spread among large, global organisations and smaller more technology-based businesses. The common theme is that banks are continuing to implement more automation into the procurement process to drive efficiency. AI seems to be where a lot of the sector is heading with AI contract reviews tools appearing to be one of the systems of choice. Digital Transformation continues to be a strong element to enable procurement functions to be more efficient, especially systems that allow self-servicing to speed up processes.
During the quarter we have been retained to recruit a Head of Procurement for a mid-sized bank which is recruiting its first Procurement Lead to assist with a more robust way of managing third party spend. It’s a bank that psd has supported for many years, recruiting their Head of Risk and HR.
We have also recruited with two investment firms, recruiting an interim sourcing manager for marketing and Head of Technology Procurement. One is with an existing bank where have placed a number of interim contractors and the 2nd placement was with a smaller, technology led financial services firm.
We have ongoing searches with banks and financial services firms so this sector will certainly keep us busy in 2022.
Consulting and Outsourcing
Consultancy remains especially buoyant and our projection is that it will continue to do so in 2022. The demand seems to be highest in broad procurement transformation and Procurement technology implementation. Consultancies are streamlining internal collaboration so that companies can be more productive and save money. They are also advising on how external communication can be improved to strengthen supplier relationships and reduce supply chain risks. An underlying theme is that companies are being advised on how to make their procurement functions more customer centric so they can help with a broad range of metrics, not just savings.
We have several interesting assignments in the usual areas with placements of Senior Managers and Directors in the UK with predominantly mid-sized firms that have Practices that specialise in Procurement Transformation. We were also commissioned on an interesting assignment in Romania with a global outsourcing advisory business where we recruited a Head of Sourcing based in Bucharest. We have a good history of successful international placements in regions such as New York, the Netherlands, Middle East and Switzerland. This is our first placement in Romania and we look forward to more.
We are looking forward to building on our strength and capability in this sector with more work forthcoming in 2022.
Energy and Utilities
The Energy and Utilities sector has come under increased pressure to control costs recently. Spiralling infrastructure expenditure and supply chain uncertainty, coupled with governmental pressure and economic turbulence, has further complicated the role of Procurement and Supply Chain leaders within this industry.
As ever, PSD are proud to continue our work within the energy and utilities sector and we have been engaged on a variety of specialist assignments during the first quarter of 2022.
We continue to support one of our key clients in the development of their transitional energy team. Having successfully recruited their new Managing Director in November, we have now been engaged to identify their new Sales Director, alongside conducting a challenging interim commercial assignment within their bids and mobilisations team. This project has brought together several of our consultants and has highlighted the breadth of specialist capability we retain.
Procurement transformation continues as a key development area within the oil and gas sector, as businesses servicing the industry strive to adapt their offerings to represent the transitional shift from fossil fuel reliance to renewable energy sources. One key project that we have supported has been to identify a digital-savvy procurement leader to develop a greenfield procurement operations function, with a remit to investigate, develop and implement new procurement technologies. This was an exciting project which saw us discussing the future of procurement technology, including the roles of new and emerging tools such as predictive analytics, blockchain, and artificial intelligence.
Finally, we continue to support the water sector with multiple assignments nationally for Procurement Managers in the infrastructure, asset management and civil engineering categories.
Demand for construction and infrastructure procurement professional remains high across our client base. Expertise in large-scale JCT and NEC contracts are highly sought after from a variety of sectors, with increased competition as private and public sector organisations continue to fight over the same talent pool. We are seeing a significant and continued inflation of salaries across the entire construction sector at the mid-senior level.
Due to this competition, we are being increasingly called upon to tackle proactive assignments which have already been out to market through various internal and external methods. Key to recruitment success within this industry is a proactive approach, and we have been working hard over the past quarter to continually develop our pool of passive talent to support our client base.
We have supported a new client within the fibre communications sector to develop their capital procurement and commercial team, identifying a range of individuals from outside of the sector to diversify their leadership team. We have also supported a growing civil engineering organisation to recruit their new greenfield procurement and commercial leader.
Social housing continues to be a significant focus area for our team, with multiple assignments in the Northwest, Midlands, and London to identify public sector procurement leaders for mid-sized organisations. We have also recently supported a developer and operator within the student accommodation sector to identify a construction procurement leader, foreshadowing plans for increased development activity within the purpose-built student accommodation market.
Facilities Management and Real Estate
With a return to some degree of normality in the UK, there is a new sense of clarity within the facilities and real estate sector. Most organisations have either already implemented or are in the process of trialling, their flexible working strategy. Amongst our client base we have seen a range of different approaches, from the opposite extremes of fully remote/fully office-based, through structured office days and flexible hybrid arrangements.
One key theme remains however, which is that the office is now seen as a key place of collaboration. Significant investments in real estate continue, with Google finalising the purchase of Central Saint Giles for over $1billion and continuing their investment in the construction of their new London headquarters, upping their office capacity to 10,000 employees in the UK. Arup also completed on their move to 80 Charlotte Street, a revolutionary all-electric building that highlights their commitment to net zero whilst combining a range of sustainable energy solutions.
Whilst we have seen a reduction in the volume of opportunities within this sector throughout the past quarter, the roles that we have supported have been of an increasingly global nature. We have supported a global leader in the Hard FM sector to identify their new Head of Procurement. As hybrid working becomes the new norm, we have supported a major remote workspace client in the development of their UK procurement team. In the services sector, we recently began an interesting assignment to identify a procurement leader to support the bid function of a complex solutions business. Finally, we have supported a long-standing asset management client in the growth of their advisory function, as more and more businesses turn to expert support in the procurement and management of their real estate portfolios.
Further to our work within the retail sector during the second quarter of 2021, we have once again been called upon to support a premium retail organisation in the development of their procurement team.
Following an initial interim assignment, we have directly supported the CPO to identify and recruit two senior procurement leadership positions within their technology and marketing categories.