Making sure the key components that a business or service relies on are available when needed is the responsibility of the purchasing role. Purchasing and supply – also known as procurement – is a highly strategic role. OPITO, the focal point for skills, is working with the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply (CIPS) to address the current shortage and a likely future need for purchasing and supply chain specialists for the oil and gas industry.
Purchasing and supply focuses on sourcing, pricing and buying the right things, at the right price and at the right time in order to deliver a service or product. It covers the full supply chain from contracts (negotiating), procurement (purchasing) and logistics (storage/distribution). Issues in the supply chain can have huge implications for a business. For example, Sony's PlayStation 4 was launched in the UK this week and is already starting to sell out due to unprecedented demand.
In a statement to the BBC a Sony spokesman said:
‘We are starting to sell out very rapidly but [we] will continue to work with all parts of the supply chain including our partners at retail to get more, as and when we can.’ (BBC, 29th November 2013)