Mastering Supply Chain & Procurement with SAP

Last week the SweetThorn team attended The Eventful Group’s 2015 Mastering Supply Chain & Procurement conference. We were a sponsor and feel that the investment was worth every cent.
Steven Freemantle | Sep 16, 2015

This year’s event attracted more the 180 delegates, which is impressive in today’s economy, dealing with such niche subject matter. I thought I would share my highlights of this year’s event with you.

I am always impressed by the networking opportunities that the Eventful shows offer. From the minute I arrived I was able to connect with like-minded folk to either have a simple catch-up chat or converse about the supply chain challenges SAP customers face. New faces or old, these events are definitely a place "where communities thrive".

This year I spoke about procurement’s role in the successful functioning of organisation’s supply chains (click here to read a similarly titled blog).  Despite having spoken at such conferences more times than I remember, I still get nervous. I guess it is the expectation I feel the community has, that I deliver a top-notch message, that keeps me on my toes. None-the-less, I thoroughly enjoyed myself and delight in the positive feedback.

We also ran workshop on day 3, the abbreviated title of which was: Integrate or die! This workshop was equally well attended, which tells me that even though one the strongest selling points of SAP is integration, and that SAP was integrated from the start, poor integration remains significant bugbear. At the end of the day many delegates thanked us warmly, but one delegate’s thank you sticks in my mind, he simply said: “Thank you for your energy.” And that is why I love what we do.

The final highlight was the keynote by Ryan Stramrood, an ultra-extreme open water and ice swimmer. Ryan spoke about how limited and governed we all are by believing in our own limitations. It is unheard of for speakers to use such a large chunk of their talking slot to show video clips. Ryan used up 20 minutes of his time to show an incredibly inspirational video of the 3 South Africans who participated in the world’s first Ice Mile swim, in the Antarctic Circle. 

Thank you to the Eventful Team for putting together an awesome event and thank you to the members of the SAP supply chain community who attended.  I am already looking forward to next year’s Mastering Conference and cannot wait to catch up with the old SAP supply chain stalwarts and meet the new ones.

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