I was at the local purchasing association meeting last night and was surprised that I was in a quite a number of conversations where the word “retirement” came up.

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Now, these weren’t 70-somethings. These were sharp-minded 50-somethings that obviously did a good job of financial planning.

Some of their companies have locked on to this trend and have brought in young blood. Others…well, not so much.

So if you’re a purchasing department head and you have a team comprised of a lot of 50-somethings, you better have a plan in case they retire. How is the work going to be done?

  • Will you simply downsize and allow others on the team absorb the work?
  • Is there work you can automate?
  • Will you hire replacements?
  • Will you outsource the work?
  • Will you utilize some combination of the foregoing?

The important thing is that you’re thinking about this situation now. There are a lot of consequences for waiting such as not having incumbents that can train your new hires, having all of the best talent snapped up before you get around to hiring, and dealing with swamped BPO’s.

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