Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Even ISIS have a procurement process

ISIS have wreaked havoc across the globe as we clamour to find a solution to their terror machine. Their sophisticated use of social media is far more advanced than most western businesses and governments, but what about their procurement processes?

Give some thought to how you would go about managing a supply chain which copes with the insatiable demand for bullets, guns, suicide vests, IEDs, etc. to the front line - thousands of bullets alone every day. The consequences of not getting the 'right thing, to the right place at the right time' may also have a heavy price to pay in personal accountability. While we discuss airstrikes, effective disruption of the procurement process would be a useful strategy as it would demoralise the 'frontline' and seriously degrade ISIS impact - it has to be explored and exhausted. 

Blackmarket arms dealers are 'licenced' by ISIS commanders, following approval by two members of the security services, and provided with stamped IDs which provide freedom of movement on the condition that ISIS are the sole customer. 

A 'pull' system is in place from the front line; effectively a requisitioning process. Requisitions are received by 'centres' - various tools are used to communicate the requisitions. The 'Committee' provide price lists to the 'centres' for common items. The dealers also receive  price lists.

Amazingly, they have also adopted a strategic approach in that since prices having been rising, they have issued more dealer licences in an effort to encourage competition reduce prices!

Governance of the process is a top table issue, understandable given the risk of failure.

There's something fascinating about this procurement process, isn't there: requisitions, price lists, approvals, making markets work, governance, speedier transactional processes. We can't tell if compliance is an issue or even quality control, but the next time you hear someone arguing that the procurement process doesn't work for them, spare a thought to how easy it all could be.

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