by Georgia Dye, Interim Marketing Manager at Revolution Events

I attended my first eWorld Procurement & Supply in September – and what a great experience it was!

Having recently joined Revolution Events to provide maternity cover for a long-serving member of their team, I was intrigues and excited to see this market-leading event in action. My objective for the day was to gain a detailed understanding of how our sponsors and delegates benefit from this bi-annual gathering of the procurement community. Arriving at the QEII Centre was an experience itself: walking over Westminster Bridge, the sun was shining, Big Ben was standing tall and our sponsors were starting to arrive. I could feel the anticipation and energy around.

The day started with refreshments and bacon rolls and we welcomed sponsors and delegates from many different companies. Opening keynote speaker Giles Breault (from The Beyond Group) was flying in from Switzerland that morning and after a slightly tense hour hoping his flight wasn’t delayed, we were thrilled to see him strolling through the doors in good time safely. Giles delivered a fast-paced but very thought-provoking speech with a wealth of interesting insight and analysis of the market. Our delegates were highly engaged by his arguments about where procurement is heading and how it might evolve to reach its full potential.

We also welcomed sponsors and speakers from Proactis, Bureau Van Dijk, Basware, Xoomworks, Scanmarket, Market Dojo, Wax Digital, Procurious, Spend Matters and many more. Simon Lipscomb (from headline sponsor Proactis) delivered a fascinating session on increasing savings and reducing risk in the purchasing process, with clear tips for delegates to regain visibility and control on spend management. Delegates also heard from Peter Marshall, co-founder of Commerce Decisions, who has worked on some of Europe’s most high profile procurement projects across many different sectors. His session was popular with our delegates as he talked about his experiences on how teams can apply and adapt best practice methodologies to the real world.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the most well-attended session of the day was the Brexit Panel Discussion focusing on the implications of the UK leaving the EU and the new opportunities that are likely to emerge. Debbie Metcalfe (from Achilles), Todd Bradley-Cole (John Lewis Partnership) and Giles Breault (The Beyond Group) were the panellists and it was chaired by Peter Smith from Spend Matters UK. The session attracted an audience of well over 200 delegates and provided a lively and informed discussion, with a high level of audience participation.

Other highlights included the Procurious social media clinic, with their team dressed as doctors to add emphasis, Wax Digital’s presentation on true innovation and, of course, Revolution Event’s marketing executive Aimee successfully naming all the chocolates in Scanmarket’s Hotel Du Chocolat box!

We were delighted to see almost 300 delegates attending, eager to stay up-to-speed with new market developments in the procurement space and to gain new perspectives from like-minded professionals. There was masses of opportunity to hear about best practice and evaluate the latest procurement tools. The smaller sessions and workshops allowed for new ideas to be shared and were very enriching, with ample time for delegates to ask specific questions. Delegates shared ideas incredibly freely, which created a very absorbing experience for everybody.

In the words of just one happy delegate: “eWorld presented some very interesting topics and materials, the event was managed smoothly and professionally – a good platform to network and share new ideas in the industry.”

As the day’s programme came to a close, many delegates congregated in the exhibition area for glasses of wine and cold beers. It was great to see people relaxing and winding down after such an intense day of learning and information-sharing. Big Ben struck five o’clock and it was the official end of a very successful day.

I was proud to be part of it and am excited to now be helping with the next eWorld Procurement & Supply on 1st March 2017 at the QEII Centre – I hope to see you there!