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Course Description

Strategic Purchasing for Supply Chain Professionals provides purchasers of transportation and related ancillary services with the knowledge and tools to generate more value across the entire buying process and afterward. Beginning with the RFI/RFP process and continuing through the establishment of criteria, negotiation, risk management, and the creation of KPIs, Strategic Purchasing gives learners best practices and practical, proven techniques for navigating this complex process.

This frequently requested course addresses a significant need in industry; businesses and professionals recognize the importance of buying and vendor selection, but very few have received formal training or professional development in the process.

Strategic Purchasing teaches learners established tools and processes in both theory and practical application, in a combination of case studies, analysis assignments, role-play, and more.

By the end of the course, learners will be able to create significant value in the entire buying process via a thoughtful, robust selection process that minimizes risk and maximizes strategic alignment, transparency, and accountability. 

Module topics include:

  • Importance of Strategic Purchasing
  • Tactical vs Strategic Purchasing
  • Requests for Proposals (RFPs)
  • Evaluating Suppliers
  • Effective Contracting
  • Negotiating Contracts
  • Acquisition Cost Factors
  • Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
  • Risk Management
  • Best Practices in Strategic Purchasing

Course grads will be able to:

  • Draft a strategically sound RFP by defining requirements and being aware of critical considerations

  • Establish supplier criteria using best practice evaluation methods and selection processes 

  • Contract effectively by overcoming common roadblocks and knowing provisions to investigate

  • Generate value in contract negotiations by using a negotiation strategy and using principles of effective negotiation 

  • Understand the full spectrum of acquisition costs by modeling sourcing options and identifying hidden costs in various sourcing scenarios

  • Distinguish best value from lowest cost 

  • Create the right KPIs that align with your strategic objectives, in both leading and lagging measures 

  • Manage and mitigate risk by using risk analysis techniques and understanding various forms of sourcing risk

  • Generate tangible value and advance organizational objectives by approaching the entire buying process with strategic insight and best practices



Course Work and Final Exam:

This online course consists of weekly readings, discussions, and quizzes. You will also have videos and practice opportunities to support your learning. All learning activities and materials are cumulative and designed to incrementally build your knowledge and skills, so it's important that you review all resources provided. Discussions and role-plays provide opportunities to apply the knowledge and skills you are learning.

Course work for Strategic Purchasing for Supply Chain Professionals includes:

  • Multiple Choice Quizzes (30%)
  • Group Discussions (10%)
  • Case Study & Role Play (20%)
  • Final Exam (40%)

Multiple Choice Quizzes - 30% of course mark

Students complete 6 short quizzes throughout the course of the semester. Each quiz is due at 11:59 pm ET on the published due date. Quizzes can be completed early for learners who need to plan ahead for business travel, vacations or other commitments, but must be completed before their individual deadlines.

Group Discussions - 10% of course mark

Each week, students will participate in online group discussions. These online discussions engage students in reflection, dialogue and debate, challenge you to apply the course material in real-world business scenarios.

Case Study & Role Play - 20% of course mark

During the course of the semester, learners will complete two role-playing exercises to practice the skills learned. Learners will schedule their role-playing exercise with the facilitator no later than one week prior to the due date.

Learners can select their choice of technologies to engage in the role-play exercise from the following options: Skype, Facetime, Facebook Messenger, or phone call. Any costs associated with connecting for this assignment are the responsibility of the learner.

Final Exam – 40% of course mark

The final exam for Strategic Purchasing for Supply Chain Professionals is held online, is 2.5 hours long, and is open-book. The exam consists of both multiple-choice and long-answer questions.

The final exam period runs over the course of several days at the end of the semester. You can choose any (continuous) 2.5 hour window of time to begin & complete your exam during the exam period. Once exam period dates have been set for each semester they are available on the Key Dates page. This exam requires access to a computer with a reliable internet connection. In order to reduce the chances of technical issues, learners should use the Firefox web browser.

Learning Assessment and Grades

Grades are reported as Honours, Pass, or Fail. To obtain a Pass, learners must earn a minimum grade of 50%. To achieve Honours, learners must earn a total grade of 80% or higher.  
The final grade is assessed based on both term work and the final examination, as follows:

  • Multiple Choice Quizzes (30%)
  • Group Discussions (10%)
  • Case Study & Role Play (20%)
  • Final Exam (40%)

Approximately one month after the final exam, you will receive your course results from CITT.