NAPM InfoEdge
May 1998, Vol. 3 No. 9

Fundamentals of Human Resources

Table of Contents
  • Purchasing and Supply’s Role in Human Resources Members Only Content
    Managing human resources in the purchasing and supply arena is an art as well as a science. It requires a structured, systematic, well-defined process to ensure that the best, most qualified people are chosen and retained as purchasing and supply professionals. Another real requirement is the regulatory functions that manage the people-processing in an organization while keeping it out of legal hot water. But there is also a certain finesse and creativity that is needed to attract the right people to the right places, keep the right people, and help them stay highly motivated. Managing human resources correctly helps organizations accomplish all these things and more.

  • Motivating Employees Members Only Content
    Once the best purchasing and supply professionals have been recruited and hired, the next challenge is often how to keep these employees motivated and excited about their jobs. Although there are many factors that influence motivation, recent studies have shown that the best determinant of motivation resides inside the employee. Because long-term, sustainable motivation comes ultimately from within an individual, managers must be careful in their use of external motivators such as money, perks, prestigious offices, and titles.

  • Promoting Employees Members Only Content
    As the purchasing and supply organization continues to evolve to meet the demands of a global marketplace, leaders will rise to the occasion.

  • Terminating Employees Members Only Content
    Like promotion, the decision to terminate an employee is based on performance and/or behaviors. Therefore, the need for establishing clear objectives and expectations, conducting regular performance reviews throughout the year, providing straightforward, real-time feedback, and identifying and implementing ongoing development opportunities are critical. Through these efforts, it may become clear that some individuals will have to seek new opportunities outside the organization. These individuals are usually having trouble keeping up with the changing environment and demonstrate such behaviors as:

  • Career Paths for Purchasing and Supply Professionals Members Only Content
    Because of the diverse backgrounds of today’s purchasing and supply professionals, there are more career paths to consider. One path focuses on purchasing and supply as the final goal, providing an upward route within the field. Purchasing and supply professionals on this path progress from an entry level purchasing and supply position such as buyer to ever-increasing roles of responsibility, potentially peaking as a chief purchasing officer (CPO) reporting to a company CEO.


Connie Veates
Connie Veates is currently director of executive support with BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc., in Atlanta, Georgia, where she previously served as director of supply chain management. Ms. Veates holds an M.B.A. degree from Georgia State University and is an adjunct faculty member of Shorter College. She has experience in both marketing and procurement, and has led teams to optimize the supplier base as well as develop long-term strategic relationships with key suppliers.

Courtney E. Lee
Courtney Lee is a supply leader of the supply chain management organization at BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc., in Atlanta, Georgia. Ms. Lee holds BS and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from Tuskegee University and the Illinois Institute of Technology, respectively. Her background includes hardware and software design as well as managing a major customer relationship program as a member of the technical staff at AT&T Bell Labs (now Lucent Technologies). While at BellSouth, Ms. Lee has managed/coached a group of procurement professionals responsible for emerging technologies’ product streams, developed and facilitated enhanced relationships with key suppliers, and played an active role on a special team to design and implement new processes to optimize the supplier base and capture financial benefits.

The following individuals contributed insights and materials on the structuring, human resources, and training elements of the purchasing and supply organization.

Cathy Martin, manager of supply chain management at BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc. shared her expertise in human resources and organizational alignment. Ms. Martin came to procurement services from the human resources organization where she conducted non-management assessments.

Emily Woods, training and development manager of supply chain management at BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc. Ms. Woods is responsible for development and training programs for supply chain management and provided insights on tools and processes for developing the purchasing and supply professional.


Electronic Buyers News On-line, located on the Internet at

HR Magazine, December, 1997

PRISM, Third Quarter, 1996

Purchasing, March 20, 1997, May 22, 1997, May 1, 1997, June 19, 1997, September 18, 1997, November 27, 1997

Purchasing Today®, August 1997

Quality Progress, February, 1997

Spahn, Jr., Jeff C., Firing Employees — A Survival Guide, located on the Internet at

Waitley, Denis. Empires of the Mind, William Morrow & Company, 1995


"The Portable Purchasing and Supply Manager," Purchasing Today®, February 1998

"Communicating Principles of Diversity," Purchasing Today®, April 1997

"Employment References — What Are the Precautions?" Purchasing Today®, October 1996

"A Smorgasbord of Skill Sets" Purchasing Today®, March 1996

"Setting the Stage for New Performance Evaluations," Purchasing Today®, May 1995

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