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Poll Results: The Role of a GPO in Your Procurement Organization

In the March/April E3 Web Poll, we wanted to find out supply management practitioners’ thoughts on group purchasing organizations (GPOs). Here are the results.

            In our first question, we asked respondents if their supply management strategy includes a GPO. Two-thirds (66 percent) indicated yes.

            The second question asked respondents whose organizations use a GPO for the primary reason. “Leveraging aggregated spend for better price and/or service levels” was chosen by 57 percent, and three answers received 14 percent each: “scarcity of resources in certain categories,” “ability to realize savings faster and more efficiently” and “engaging in collaborative opportunities with other GPO members.”

            Finally, we asked respondents to share comments on working with a GPO — or why they choose not to. Among them:

  • "Our company is not that advanced or forward-looking."
  • "Our current resources are busy with a lot of other work, so having a GPO help source a category for us and provide quick savings on other categories was very attractive."
  • "No on GPOs: You lose your expertise and capability and can potentially lose control. Over time, you can be exploited. If you don't have the resource or capability in the first place, how do you know the GPO is a good one?"
  • "It can be tricky, but as long as the risk resides with the individual organization and there is stability in the contract, it works pretty well."
  • "As a health-care organization, we have used GPOs for decades. They allow our organization to concentrate on direct spend contracts, while the GPOs develop indirect spend contracts."

We invite you to participate in the May/June Web Poll, and look for the results in the July/August issue of E3.

Return to the May/June issue table of contents page.