Gold Plated Specifications

The Background

A separate department within the clients global organisation had recently published a policy and set of standards in an operationally critical area of expenditure. The issue was that full implementation of the new standards would incur an estimated $50m – clearly an unaffordable sum. In this heavily regulated sector, however, non-compliance to policy could result in significant multi-$m fines.

The Process

Firstly, to develop a relationship with the document author and set out the implications of implementing the existing policy and standards. Seek co-operation from a broad base of stakeholders and finance personnel. New drafting, with an output specification, not method specification for each line of the standards. Impose an annual document review for continued improvements.

The Challenge

To recognise that significant improvements had to be made. To re-write the global policy and standards documents, owned by resisting colleagues, and implement the new requirements to avoid any unnecessary costs.

The Results

The avoidance of c$50m of unnecessary costs. Improved relationships with budget holders internal stakeholders and suppliers. Implementation of method of continuous improvement.


Sometimes  technical or subject matter experts ignore the commercial impact of their proposals. Challenging the “rules” is often necessary and improved results come from doing so in a respectful manner.

For more information about our services :

Contact Pyramis

Jim Willshaw (MBA, MCIPS, MIIAPS)

Jim is an experienced procurement professional acting as a consultant, speaker, coach and trainer to leading organisations all over the globe.

Get in touch by calling:

+44 (0)7775 818901

Contact Us