Our President, Cyril Ramaphosa has consistently stated that small businesses are the key to driving growth in our economy but have been overlooked by both huge corporates and government. In his SONA speech, Ramaphosa highlighted that we need to bolster SMMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) owned by the youth and women.
Adcorp remains committed to transformation and the importance of developing SMMEs for the development of our country. Thus, in support of the President’s call, Adcorp hosted its first Supplier Development Masterclass on the 10th of February 2020 as part of its commitment to growing SMMEs. The theme for the day was “Small Business is Big Business.”
This inaugural event is in line with the country’s National Development Plan (NDP) vision 2030, which puts emphasis on the development of SMMEs as a catalyst for economic growth and employment creation. The National Development Plan envisioned that by 2030 SMMEs will contribute 60-80% to GDP increase, and generate 90% of the 11-million new jobs in our country. (Mail and Guardian, 2019)
The premise of supplier development is to encourage corporates to support these businesses through financial means, resources, mentorship, coaching and skills transfer. The BEE Codes appreciate the potential contribution of SMMEs through employment creation in the long term.
Adcorp invited its key suppliers and partners to this session to empower them with critical skills, equipping them to manage their businesses more efficiently. The masterclass covered topics such as financial management, marketing and sales, risk and compliance, legal and contract management, strategy development and execution, and human resources and the impact of technology in the 21st century. The masterclass was presented by our Adcorp Group EXCo members, each sharing guidelines on how our partners should position themselves for long-term business growth.
As we remain committed to transformation, boosting the economy and employment creation, our ongoing supplier development efforts will include hosting more masterclasses for our SMMEs – partnering, developing and investing in small businesses.
What goes into good supplier development programmes
Supplier development programmes are increasingly growing in popularity due to their support of sustainable, shared value creation and potential for growth in South Africa’s struggling economy and will play an integral role in tackling the country’s persistent unemployment challenges.
To drive the full impact of this approach, stakeholders in all industries need to charter the course as a collective, viewing supplier development programmes as a strategic business imperative rather than the “tick the right box” application we’ve seen historically.
They need to have rhyme and reason. A growth strategy is critical to their success and long-term sustainability. It’s not just taking on a young entrepreneur owned business as a supplier and calling it a day.
We need to be highly involved, utilising education, mentorship, and company resources to work with our smaller suppliers, filling gaps in their businesses and performance to help them build for sustainable growth. There are many benefits to these programmes, some of which are outlined below; however; it really should be enough that it’s the right thing to do.
Here are four reasons corporates should invest in supplier development:
- B-BBEE compliance requirements: Developing SMMEs will help your business gain B-BBEE scorecard points so that you can meet your compliance requirements. On top of this, most corporates have supplier diversity goals in mind each year, so it will also help to keep your plans on track to achieve a sustainable return on your investment.
- Improve brand reputation: Your company image portrays as a responsible corporate, sending the message to your employees and your customers that your company cares about sustainable value creation in society. With the growing wave of socially aware consumers, this is critical to sustainable business success in the future. The local community impact that these programmes provide can humanize your brand and emphasize company values. They can even be included in your messaging to increase your brand loyalty.
- Diversity in your supply chain: Not only is this a compliance requirement, but by developing SMMEs, it creates competition for your entire supplier base, which leads to better, more innovative outcomes for your business. You are also contributing to growing your available options, allowing you to be more selective in your procurement decisions, getting the best possible value.
- It’s the right thing to do: You’re showing support for the government’s transformation efforts, strengthening the economy, and contributing to job creation.
If South African corporates apply more emphasis and a little out of the box thinking to supplier development programmes, we will realise that opening our doors to support smaller suppliers from a procurement, education and resources perspective, really signifies working together to contribute towards a more prosperous South Africa, and they are going to need us now more than ever.
Across the Group we have a number of end-to-end workplace solutions solving a wide range of business challenges. We search, place, develop, train and manage people for temporary and permanent job opportunities. We also supply people resources on an outsourced basis and manage people-intensive processes on behalf of our clients. Our mission is to build workplaces and careers of the future by transforming the places we work in. We do this by connecting potential.