Reliance Employees Achieve Chartered Procurement Status

Jul 28, 2020

Reliance congratulates Rebecca Keith and Seb Allen on successfully achieving Chartered status with the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS).

Rebecca and Seb, both Senior Buyers within the Reliance Purchasing team, had previously gained their MCIPS (Membership of the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply) status, one of the most prestigious awards a professional purchaser could earn. In 2018 CIPS introduced the Chartered Member Grade. Chartered status is achieved by undertaking and recording Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours, ensuring candidates maintain relevance and can demonstrate their knowledge in the fast-moving profession where legislation and new initiatives are a regular occurrence.

Candidates are also required to undertake an annual ethics test to gain their CIPS Ethical Procurement and Supply Certificate. CIPS believe the ethics agenda is key in business today and being able to demonstrate an organisation’s supply chain is free from fraud, corruption and modern-day slavery is really important. Consequently, they consider candidates who achieve Chartered status to be the top of the grade in terms of their profession.

Rebecca was already part way through her studies for her MCIPS when she joined Reliance in 2008 as a buyer responsible for purchasing standard catalogue parts. Keen to carry on with her studies, she received support and encouragement from Reliance to continue working towards MCIPS status. Now a Senior Buyer within the organisation, Rebecca works across all of Reliance’s business units.

After learning of the new Chartered status opportunity with CIPS, she began to consider applying. Rebecca recognised the personal development aspect in terms of refreshing and developing her existing skills, as well as the potential opportunity to look at things differently in order to be prepared for future changes. She had also seen the positive impact receiving Chartered status had on the engineers and their teams when they had received similar professional accreditations in their field.

Rebecca made the decision to begin working towards Chartered status last year. Whilst undertaking her CPD hours and the various online courses, she received additional support from an external mentor. She explains “Reliance very kindly provided me with access to a procurement consultant with a huge amount of purchasing experience. During our regular mentoring sessions, I was able to tap into his corporate experience to learn and understand more about the strategic side of procurement. It was hugely beneficial.”

Rebecca successfully achieved Chartered status in January 2020. She comments “I am very proud of myself for what I have achieved. It is a big accomplishment and has definitely given me additional confidence in terms of contributing to Reliance’s procurement strategy, as well as developing and leading the team. The ethical element of the award is something I am particularly keen to practice and keep up to date with. Ethical and sustainable procurement sits well with Reliance’s operating principles and at the heart of its family values and culture. I am looking forward to being able to contribute this insight.”

Achieving Chartered status just a few weeks after Rebecca is Seb Allen. Over the course of the last nine months Seb has been displaying and logging his CPD activities as well as undertaking continuous reading in relation to ethical and sustainable practices within modern day supply chains to help pass a number of exams on the subject. He explains “Chartered status is a globally recognised award, and given it is still relatively new, is fairly uncommon within the profession. It seemed a great opportunity to continue my personal and career development by achieving an award that would set me apart from others.” Seb continues “Reliance were hugely supportive of my decision to work towards Chartered status. I had access to the same Procurement Consultant as Rebecca to mentor me throughout the process, as well as plenty of support and encouragement from my line manager and colleagues. Without Reliance’s endorsement, I certainly don’t think I would have progressed as far as I have done to date.”

Steve Woollven, Reliance’s Managing Director, concludes “We are incredibly proud of Rebecca and Seb for achieving Chartered procurement status. Reliance strives to support all employees who wish to secure professional qualifications, recognising the value and benefits they can bring to the business. As an organisation that is continuously seeking to develop new technologies and increase innovation, we welcome the up-to-date learnings and best practice methodologies they will bring to Reliance’s procurement strategy.”

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