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Simon WhatsonPrincipal

Career background

I graduated from Durham University with a BSc in Maths and spent the next eight years developing my career in the supply chain team at Wolseley and then BrainNet, a management consultancy not dissimilar to Efficio. Feeling the need for a change, I moved to Oliver Wyman, a leading strategy house. This was an exciting experience for me and a challenge I thoroughly enjoyed, but after two years, I decided that it was back in procurement where I wanted to be.

The opportunity to play a very direct role in bringing about positive and sustainable change to businesses of all natures, across all industries, was what I had missed the most. When the opportunity to join Efficio arose, with its strong procurement brand, global reach and aggressive growth plans, it was one that I could not turn down.

My role

I joined Efficio in 2015 as a Senior Manager. One of my biggest assignments since joining has been managing the programme delivery at one of our larger managed services clients. The longer term nature of the client engagement brings its own unique challenges, mixed in with all the standard consulting project ones. It is this variety that I have found so enjoyable about my project experience at Efficio so far; helping one of the consultants with their sourcing strategy one minute, responding to the client's inevitably changing business priorities the next, and constantly looking for new ways that we can add value over the long term.

As well as client project work, I've been involved recently with a small team internally to find ways of leveraging knowledge between our projects better and faster. Efficio has incredible know-how across the company when it comes to procurement and putting processes in place to ensure that all clients reap the full benefits of that will be vital for future growth.

What I like about Efficio

Aside from the chance to return to procurement, Efficio has also offered a culture that suits me perfectly. Born and raised in the UK, I've always been keen to use my French and German language skills and Efficio offers endless travel possibilities for those who like the international aspect. Additionally, it blends the friendliness and warmth of a small company with the scale and leading thinking of a large one. As it has grown, Efficio has managed to retain an environment in which anyone with an idea is encouraged to come forward and develop it with others. That, together with the opportunity to work with exceptionally smart people on a daily basis, is why Efficio is a great company to be part of.

Insight
Carillion: Key lessons for suppliers

Following Carillion's compulsory liquidisation what actions should procurement functions that employ these types of companies take to ensure proper financial controls are in place?

Opinion
Three Brexit questions CFOs need to ask their CPO

In an article first published in Financial Director, Simon Whatson highlights the three Brexit questions CFOs should be asking their CPOs today.