You may recall that this is my third year attending the conference. Once again Frank Musero and his team at WBR managed to pull together a fantastic event.
Today I want to share some of my highlights.
In previous year’s I did not attended the pre-conference tours, but this year I did. There were two tours to choose from. I elected to attend the Home Depot tour.
The Home Depot Tour
Katrina Holloway Director of Indirect Procurement at Home Depot (HD) hosted the tour and I could not have been more impressed.
Throughout the campus Home Depot has managed to incorporate bright and modern branding touches. The Lobby was beautifully and tastefully accented with touches of Home Depot Orange. You always know you are in Home Depot but at no time did it feel like a lumber store.
Their Facilities Team shared with us how their team recently completed a restacked the entire HD campus. HD shared the challenges associated with relocating 17,000 people across 5 campuses and discussed the tools and techniques they use to ensure optimal adjacency’s between departments.
We were then treated to a tour of Home Depot’s Product testing lab. Imagine if your day to day job was working with the MythBusters! That’s the best way to describe what this was like.
In this lab, every HDX (Home Depot’s private label) product is tested to ensure it meets product specifications before it is sold to the public. This lab had everything from chambers that simulate weathering effects on bolts to machines that simulate someone sitting in a chair. I had no idea that HD tested products in this way, but this is where that happens.
Day One of the Conference
The conference began with an interesting panel discussion about how the Internet of Things (IoT) and automation technology is impacting facilities. My friend and IBM colleague Michael Beauregard joined a panel consisting of Aditya Jain, Director, Global Procurement from Visa, Ben Wright, Senior Sales Engineer at Energy Management Collaborative (EMC), and Gerry Potter, Senior Digital Director, Digital Solutions, JLL. The Panelists addressed everything from which areas of technology are most ready for adoption to how to future proof installations.
A second panel discussion followed shortly after. This panel focused on Trends in outsourcing. Michele Thompson led the discussion with Anders Rosenkrands-Lange, Paul Roessler, Ingrid Fenn, and James Lawler, through a stimulating discussion on the various forms of Facilities outsourcing and Ingrid shared a very succinct and clear explanation of how a misalignment in your engagement model could lead to dissatisfaction with service levels.
Later that afternoon, I took the stage as moderator for a panel discussion on the various ways Procurement engages on construction. A stellar group of panelists consisting of James Connell, David Cloutier, and Cheri Barkley shared a wide range of experiences and models which kept the audience engaged.
I then took the stage again to lead a workshop presentation on how collaboration models work and how procurement can achieve the same goals of collaboration with conventional contracts. I will be sharing more details on that in a future post.
Later that day, supply chain manager for Intel and close friend Terri Roscosky took the stage to share how she solved Intel’s challenges for addressing small construction projects in a market where labor is at a premium. At the same time, I took the stage once more as moderator for a panel discussion on how trends in co-location changed how corporations lease and use space.
Day two of the Conference
in the morning of Day Two of the conference, Jake Gunnoe gave an entertaining and insightful perspective on how to work with and mentor Millennials.
And Phil Fishman, Jeff Craig and Collin Taira gave us a spirited debate on how to create a modern category plan for facilities.
We then closed out the morning with a panel discussion about Score-carding and began the afternoon with a discussion about how to harvest innovation from your supply chain.
Felipe Niles from Google gave us an eye opening presentation about the kinds of challenges Google has in construction and the conference closed with a panel discussion on how to benchmark your procurement organization.
All in all this was another great conference!
Stay tuned in the coming weeks as I expect to publish a summary from my workshop and I may have a few guest writers from the conference as well.
If you were at the conference this year tell me which events and take-aways you enjoyed the most. If you did not attend let me know which topics you would like next year’s conference to address. I know Frank and next year’s new Director are already looking for ideas and I would be happy to share your coments with them.
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