HSE Procurement – a changing environment

Heretofore IMSTA members have traditionally mobilised in reaction to significant procurement challenges. We have been reactionary rather than responsive, which has always resulted in industry being behind the curve, a position that makes it difficult to get a foothold in engaging with procurement authorities.

Two significant recent initiatives have agitated and confused many members; the sudden and unexpected demand by HSE’s CFO Stephen Mulvany and Head of Procurement Sean Bresnan that members register immediately on the SAP Ariba platform and Tallaght and St James’ Hospitals announcement that they intend to implement the Edge4Health Ireland platform www.edge4health.ie which requires suppliers to subscribe to a completely different platform, loading product data (item details, images, Unit of Measure etc ) plus all price files. See also www.virtualstock.com

Many members have been contacting IMSTA’s Executive bewildered by these unexpected demands, especially in the middle of this COVID-19 crisis. But is it really unexpected? This has been happening in the NHS for the past while, maybe we’d have had a better chance of seeing it coming if we had a Procurement Group in place?

These developments have the potential to dramatically alter how business is done, not to mention the cost to companies. How do IMSTA members feel about this? Should we reach out to members to gauge the feeling and get a better common understanding? Are member companies struggling with this? IMSTA is your representative body, do you want us to respond in some way? Any suggestions to justin.carty@imsta.ie