Procurement as a strategic asset in higher education – call for evidence


We know that procurement makes a key contribution to the savings agenda in higher education, yet the strategic value of procurement within institutions is less well-defined, says John Lakin of Procurement UK. We now need examples of good practice to help raise the profile of procurement, especially at senior managerial levels. 

The Efficiency Exchange is looking to gather material to showcase the strategic value of procurement to the sector as part of its aim to support the implementation of the recommendations of the Diamond review.

Call for evidence

We want to collect evidence that shows how procurement managers have worked with senior leaders at the ‘top table’ in their organisations to meet the strategic vision of their vice-chancellors and to deliver value that goes beyond cost savings.

Our intention is to publish a short report and a series of case studies which can be used to raise the profile of procurement and to stimulate discussion, not least with vice-chancellors and other senior leaders to encourage them to think more creatively about their own procurement functions.

We are therefore issuing a call for evidence to managers in the sector to contact us if they have experience that could feed into the study.

Key questions

Our key questions are:

  1. How have you managed to raise the profile of procurement so that it is seen as a strategic asset in your institution?
  2. How have you worked at the ‘top table’ of your institution on projects of strategic importance?
  3. How have you shaped or delivered the vision of the vice-chancellor for your institution?
  4. Do you have any examples of practice that could form the basis of a case study to be written up for the benefit of the sector?

Case studies

We welcome your ideas for case studies. Please provide a brief outline of what was achieved, by when and how, and why you think this demonstrates adding strategic value.  We will select a small number and provide a dedicated resource to write them up in a common format for publication on the Efficiency Exchange.

Your responses

Please send your responses by email to Ian Powling by 31 May 2013.

John Lakin is a consultant whose services to higher education included advising the Diamond review on efficiency.  He is an independent member of Procurement UK and is supporting UUK’s efficiency programme.