Supply disruption makes strong supplier relations 'vital'

Seek value outside of supplier contracts, Thames Water executive David Wylie tells Procurement & Supply Chain LIVE: The Risk & Resilience Conference

In April 2022, Procurement Magazine, Supply Chain Digital and Bizclik Media Group returned to London's Tobacco Dock to host our second Procurement & Supply Chain LIVE. 

Dubbed ‘The Risk & Resilience Conference’ the two-day hybrid event featured keynotes, roundtables, Q&As, and networking opportunities with inspirational and knowledgeable leaders in the procurement and supply chain space. 

Addressing a live and remote audience, Thames Water Director of Commercial and Procurement David Wylie delivered a keynote entitled 'Supplier management in a changing world',

Thames Water is the UK's largest water and wastewater services company, supplying 2.6bn litres of drinking water a day, and treating 4.7bn litres of wastewater daily.

in which he discussed how current world events, including the pandemic and the Ukraine war, have made supplier relationships more critical than ever.

Case for strong supplier relations 'never better' - Thames Water

"Scarce resources and high inflation are things we have not seen for a long time," Wylie said. "The business case for strong supplier relations has never been better."

Wylie cautioned that high spend and efficient processes will not work in the "new normal", and asked: "What is the anatomy of a great supplier relationship and what new value will it bring?"

He went on to say that strong supplier relations are forged by strong management of frontline operations, contracts, performance and risk.

Wylie added: "Suppliers want to build strong relations, because this is what gives them preferred supplier status. So it's important for organisations to go looking for new value outside of supplier contracts, because they will find many suppliers are happy to provide this."

About David Wylie, of Thames Water

Wylie has 20 years' experience in commercial and procurement roles, both in the UK and globally - across the energy, transport, retail and utility sectors.

He has worked with organisations to build capability in industries where high-performing suppliers and supply chains are critical to successful delivery.

As a former board member of London Underground, Wylie delivered improvements to customer service, safety and cost delivery through supply chain delivery.

As well as his role at Thames Water, he is a Non-Executive Director at the Retail Energy Code Company and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply.

To watch this keynote - or any of our other speakers from Procurement & Supply Chain LIVE: The Risk and Resilience Conference - click here.


This October, Supply Chain Digital and Procurement Magazine return to London for an all-new event - PROCUREMENT & SUPPLY CHAIN LIVE LONDON 2022. Click here, to find out how you can attend.

Held at the QEII Centre from 12-13 October, BMG’s all-new hybrid event incorporates two zones - SupplyChain LIVE and Procurement LIVE - to create a single EXPO style experience. 

The event will give those attending the chance to showcase their values, products and services to partners and customers. 

To find out more about PROCUREMENT & SUPPLY CHAIN LIVE LONDON 2022, click here.


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