Frankfurt am Main, August 19, 2015 – The expert in purchasing for the automotive industry and owner of PURCHASING PARTNER, Tanja Dammann-Götsch, provides information on the world's latest trends in the automotive sector in an interview.
In the first half of 2015 alone, she worked on-site in the USA, Mexico, China and Germany. The interview took place in Frankfurt am Main on August 12, 2015. The questions were posed by Yvonne Habermehl, who has fulfilled the function of press officer for PURCHASING PARTNER for over two years.
Question: What is currently Purchasing theme number 1 in the automotive industry in Mexico, the USA, China and Germany?
Tanja Dammann-Götsch: The number 1 theme in Mexico is: "How do I get and how do I keep good people in purchasing?" The leading automobile manufacturers worldwide are fighting on the purchasers market for the best purchasers. In the United States the high profile product recalls continue to be in the foreground. There were a lot of accidents that resulted in compensation sums in the millions. Excluding quality defects and buying good quality at a good price is the number 1 issue here. In China, a central question is: "How do the Germans do it? How do the German colleagues buy?" In turn, in Germany it is all about skills shortages. The requirements for Purchasing here are extremely high - and are also constantly growing. Thus it is increasingly important to meet this need with good staff.
Question: Are there significant differences between the different countries?
Tanja Dammann-Götsch: The world of the automotive industry is global. The same processes operate the same everywhere. In all the countries in which I have worked this year, the purchasing departments have very good and well-trained professionals. Large differences exist, however, in intercultural teamwork. Here everyone is farther developed than we are here in Germany.
Question: Can trends be recognized?
Tanja Dammann-Götsch: Yes, electric mobility is one of the most important trends worldwide. Another important trend is electronics: There will be more and more electronics in vehicles – up to the development of self-driving cars. The realisation of this vision of autonomous driving is within reach.
Question: What is your opinion regarding the purchaser of the future? What will be important?
Tanja Dammann-Götsch: The purchasers of the future will no longer sit day after day in front of the computer processing purchasing from the open-plan office with other purchasers. He/she will work project-based in interdisciplinary teams, inter alia together with developers. He will be a manager of his product category, carry a lot of responsibility, be able to master intercultural communication and therefore be an all-rounder of a modern industrial operation.
Question: In your opinion are changes in the purchasing departments necessary and if so, are they more concerned with the organisational structure for procurement, or more with personnel management?
Tanja Dammann-Götsch: In my opinion the classic organisational structure it will no longer exist in the future. This applies to all purchasers. As for leadership, there will be "cross-functional" teams with professional rather than disciplinary superiors. A rethinking is taking place now. My job is to accompany such processes worldwide as a consultant, trainer and coach of specialists and executives in Purchasing.
Question: During your international activity as a purchasing expert in the automotive industry in the last half year what was for you personally of special significance?
Tanja Dammann-Götsch: To see that there are very good professionals in the US, Mexico and China, who are eager to learn (...) and how well intercultural and interdisciplinary teamwork functions there has made me really excited and reinforced me in my work enormously.
Question: What countries you will be visiting as purchasing expert in the automotive industry in the coming months?
Tanja Dammann-Götsch: (...) I will be in China another three times this year, spend several weeks in the UK, in Poland, in between often in Germany and early next year in the US and Mexico.
Question: In conclusion, do you perhaps have another tip for purchasers in Germany?
Tanja Dammann-Götsch: (...) travel to other countries, ideally speak to the supplier regularly on the spot, not just from the office. Discuss important details personally. One receives so much through international exchange.
About Tanja Dammann-Götsch
As managing director of PURCHASING PARTNER, since 2006 Tanja Dammann-Götsch has trained and coached Purchasing executives in the automobile industry in the United States, Mexico, Europe and China. She is also a speaker at trade fairs and congresses. Previously she was an executive in the branch for over 15 years, including in Training and Development for one of the world's largest automakers. Tanja Dammann-Götsch lives in Hanau, Germany.