5th Jun 2018CPO
By Ed Cross, Executive Director, Odesma
Procurement leaders under unprecedented pressure in face of Brexit but growth unaffected
Survey reveals true impact of leaving the EU on procurement and the supply chain
82 per cent of procurement and supply chain leaders are under more pressure than ever to reduce
the cost of third party goods and services in the face of Brexit. That’s according to new research
announced by procurement advisory firm, Odesma, which also found that despite these pressures,
72 per cent of respondents have not yet considered or do not plan to seek new suppliers in non-EU
Although leaders feel unprecedented pressure, procurement is less and less considered an
important part of Brexit preparations, with 73 per cent believing it plays a critical role compared to
92 per cent in 2017.
Commissioned by Cheshire-based Odesma, the annual research aims to establish industry sentiment
towards leaving the EU, and highlight the concerns and current issues facing those in the sector.
Reassuringly, the perceived impact of Brexit on procurement and supply chain growth in 2018 seems
to be abating, with 45 per cent feeling it is hampering growth compared to 67 per cent in 2017.
However, Brexit is increasingly considered an international rather than European issue, with almost
a quarter more in 2018 believing it will disrupt procurement globally (52%) compared to just 29 per
cent in 2017 when the firms were first surveyed*.
Worryingly, 64 per cent of respondents admitted they do not have a Brexit risk register and
contingency plan in place in procurement, with fewer organisations this year putting plans in place
to prepare for Brexit (39% in 2018 down from 54% in 2017).
Nick Ford, Executive Director of Odesma, commented: “Our annual research into Brexit sentiment
across the sector indicates a drop in the level of planning being undertaken by procurement and
supply chain leaders. This could be attributed to a lack of direction and strategy from government on
the outcomes of leaving the EU – arguably, how can organisations plan when the route and end
destination is as yet unknown?
“On a positive note, it’s great that organisations are seeing growth less and less affected by the
challenges of Brexit. However, despite this optimism, it’s clear that as a sector, we’re feeling the
“Although only time will tell how leaving the EU will impact the industry, it’s crucial that the role of
procurement remains at the forefront of business decision-making and planning when it comes to
Brexit, as the establishment of new suppliers, workers and contracts take priority.”
Almost half of respondents agreed that freedom of movement of workers post-Brexit will have the
biggest impact on procurement (42%), followed by free movement of goods (24%) and
establishments and services (18%).
On a positive note for the UK, 45 per cent of respondents are planning to look within the UK for
alternative supply lines in the future.
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Notes to editors:
Odesma is a procurement advisory firm with nearly 100 years in the industry working across almost
Founded in 2014 by Steve Trainor, Ed Cross and Nick Ford, Odesma offers procurement as a service
by bringing together leading subject matter expertise, technology, governance and leadership that is
tailored to the needs of the organisation.
Based on ‘Cloud Principles’, Odesma provides access to the best expertise and talent in any industry,
quickly, whenever and wherever it is needed.
About the research
*Odesma first conducted the research in January 2017 and repeated it in January 2018 across its
blue chip client base.
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