1. Purchasing, Procurement, and Strategic Sourcing

Although some people may view interest in the performance of purchasing and supply management as a recent phenomenon, it was recognized as an independent and quite important function by many of the nation’s railroad organizations well before 1900. Yet traditionally most firms regarded the supply function primarily as a clerical activity that fell to purchasing staff. During World War I and World War II, market demand was almost unlimited. Therefore, the success of a firm was not dependent on what it could sell. Instead, the ability to obtain the raw materials, supplies, and services from suppliers needed to keep the factories and mines operating was the key determinant of organizational success. ...

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