Supply chain leadership interview: SAPICS president Mungo Park | by Kate Ferreira

MungoMungo Park has a lot on his plate. Not only is he a full-time supply chain professional (a senior director with global transport and logistics company, DSV), but must also find dedicated time for his role as president of SAPICS (www.sapcis.org.za). The latter is a volunteer organisation for the supply chain field, and the premier channel partner for the APICS organisation, and the network of thousands of supply chain professionals that incorporates.

Mungo got his start in the working world at IBM, and soon segued into the area of information technology (IT) solutions for supply chain (SC). He joined the Supply Chain Council which was later incorporated into APICS and then SAPICS, culminating in over 20 years’ experience as an SC professional and leader.

Balancing act

Despite the competing demands on his time, Mungo is philosophical about the notion of splitting his time. “It is a natural extension of what I do in my ‘other life’,” he says. “The learnings I get in my ‘day job’ apply to my SAPICS role, in terms of what SAPICS should be looking at or how we should be approaching the community within this industry.”

“My company is quite understanding in terms of the time that I need to give to SAPICS,” he adds. “They recognise the value of SAPICS as well, so they are happy to share me to a small extent.”

Networks and accreditation

For Mungo, that value lies in the connections and opportunities an organisation like SAPICS can create. “SAPICS is an organisation which aims to promote and support the supply chain community in South Africa. It is a chance to give back to the industry, to develop the industry. We do this through courses, conferences, and a focus on facilitating networking. We work to foster relationships - to make as many connections between supply chain professionals in Southern Africa,” he says.
Mungo continues: “One of the most important things that we have been working on - which is about to come to fruition this year - is the formation of a SC professional body in South Africa which will provide accreditation for SC professionals across industries.” This project will enable professionals to achieve accreditation for training and work experience.

“This is about building up the credibility of supply chain, and recognition of learning and experience.” In practical terms, this could provide significant boost. The idea, says Mungo, is that if someone wants to hire a SC manager, for example, and that person has reached a certain level of accreditation by the professional body, then the company can trust that that individual is capable of executing what the role requires of them.

Another key goal for 2018 is the continuation of the popular SAPICS roundtable events, and revisiting the CEO-SC engagement strategy of a few years ago that entails bringing CEOs and SC professionals into closer engagement.

Eventing and partnering

One of their first events for the year is the collaboration with Bespoke on the inaugural Supply Chain Risk Management Summit 2018 (12 - 14 February 2018). “It is very important for SAPICS to partner with other organisations. And I think the Bespoke partnership is a good one,” says Mungo. “Beyond this event, I am hoping that this relationship will continue to develop, and there will be opportunities for us to look for other things that we can do together.”

This focus on risk is an important theme currently. “In terms of supply chain risk and resiliency, we started seeing significant disruption to SC last year – the issues with Durban port being just one example. This has a considerable impact on South African business, and we must be prepared to manage ongoing volatility and risk.”

Kate Ferreira is the Contributing Editor of Bespoke Procurement Bulletin - www.bespoke.co.za

Posted on January 17, 2018