Procurement in the context of commercial management

Murray, Michael and Langford, David; Lowe, David and Leiriunger, Ronie, eds. (2006) Procurement in the context of commercial management. In: Commercial management. Blackwell Publishers, UK, pp. 71-92. ISBN 9781405124508

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Clients who procure the services of external organisations to complete projects are challenged to find the optimum combination of resources that will fulfil their objectives. Typically, the planning, management and control of a project is often viewed through the lifecycle of an engineering project. However, if we consider other industries such as banking, retail and fashion, it is clear that at some point in time, most organisations, whatever industry sector, will embark on a project. Such projects will involve the procurement of finance, labour, materials and machinery and in this respect they have similar requirements. This is particularly so if we consider the generic skills required by project managers. However, this chapter describes the importance of procurement to commercial management by the example of construction and engineering. For more than a century, these industries have played a key role in the UK’s relative economic wealth through the employment of labour and the construction of the nation’s infrastructure and buildings.