REAL STORIES SHARED BY OUR READERS
* Names have been changed
Procurement tender deadlines after the holiday season are on trend. That’s the word on the street after it was learned today that procurement departments across the world secretly banded together to sign a bulk purchasing agreement for luxury holidays to be redeemed during the peak Christmas and Easter holiday seasons.
Announcing the agreement at a CIPS conference, Damian Jolly* said the holiday agreement would formalize a long-standing practice, granting procurement departments their rightful annual leave at a good price, while leaving the window open for suppliers to work on their tenders “in their own time” or “on the beach” rather than in the office where they may have conflicting priorities and added pressure.
“We recognize that tenders are high pressure, fast paced and terribly expensive for companies, so we want to give suppliers the breathing space to work on them, and there’s no better time than Boxing Day or Easter Sunday when the phones aren’t ringing or the bosses aren’t breathing down your neck. And when we get back from our holidays feeling refreshed that’s the best time for our evaluators to assess the tenders that have been waiting for them for 4 weeks. Win win for everyone,” he said.
Vanessa* from the Association of Proposal Management Professionals however, said members of their global peak body, which represents suppliers, weren’t consulted about the decision.
“We’ve never been consulted, and yet our members are filling in 15 page Social Procurement questionnaires instead of breaking bread or guzzling wine with mates. Instead, they’re answering responses about their commitment to gender equity, their human rights track records and sustainable business practices. Do you see the irony here? Our members are modern slaves to procurement, with latch key kids making TV dinners while husbands or wives are frustrated as hell at having to go solo to the theme parks to entertain the kids while the pre-paid holiday apartment dining table has turned into a hot-desk mess. Don’t even get me started in trying to reach Gary from Procurement with clarification questions. His out of office email is on, and the message states that he’s not in mobile reach and only has intermittent access to emails so he won’t be able to respond to clarification questions until he returns from Fiji.”
Bidhive has since run its own survey of bidders, with 99.9% of respondents admitting that they had forgone holidays and happy family memories to prioritize a tender deadline.
The survey delved deeper into respondents’ sentiments around who is responsible for employee wellbeing during a tender competition: the employer or procurement. Responses were overwhelmingly supportive and sympathetic towards employers, with 99.9% of respondents viewing the employer as the victim.
Given a multiple choice response for how suppliers feel when forced to respond to a tender during the holidays, 99.9% chose option C: “”You can #$!% your tender process procurement people. Happy #^##*#* Christmas or Easter to you”.
Bidhive has contacted various procurement representatives for comment, but our requests have so far been unanswered.