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MARK ROBERTSON

Category Manager, Glasgow City Council

mark robertson
Background:                     University of Paisley –  BSc. (Hons) Mathematical Science

Country of Origin:           Scotland

what I have gained in terms of fulfillment and development vastly outweighs the cost of the sacrifices made to accommodate the commitment to the MBA programme into my schedule.

Career: After a brief period in Finance roles, I began a career in Procurement with Iron Mountain in 2001 and completed my professional qualification in 2004, achieving Membership of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply (MCIPS) status.

I moved from Iron Mountain in 2006, taking a Post as Senior Buyer with First Group, where I was responsible for all indirect spend in the Scottish Bus Operation and was heavily involved in the role out of SAP procurement in the region and led on the first e-procurement exercise delivered across Bus Operations in the UK.

In late 2008 I accepted a post with Glasgow City Council as Purchasing Executive and have since progressed into Category Management – where I remain in post to date.

The post at GCC is my first experience of Public Sector Procurement and I was, and remain, interested in the balance between regulations, legislation and transparency of process and the need for commercial astuteness in Public Procurement, a matter which is extremely topical presently.

Why an MBA & Why Strathclyde?  My view is that personal development must remain a focus throughout my career if I wish to continue to progress and reach further in my aspirations. I was attracted to my career in procurement as it is a broad spanning role. Such span and scope remains important to me which is why the MBA is a good fit. It covers all areas and aspects of business, to a good level of detail which I feel will serve me extremely well in the future.

Strathclyde was an easy and obvious choice to make as the part-time course fits well with my schedule, the location is perfect as I work in and around the City Centre. The biggest selling point however, were the ratings, reviews and accreditation of the Business School. The facilities are first rate and the experience so far has surpassed my expectations.

The course is as challenging as it was described to be and finding a balance between professional, personal and academic commitments has been a difficult but not impossible.

I am married with a young child and my role at the Council is extremely demanding. However, what I have gained in terms of fulfillment and development vastly outweighs the cost of the sacrifices made to accommodate the commitment to the MBA programme into my schedule.

What can you offer other students? Networking is proving to be a huge part of the experience and I have already learned a great deal from colleagues on the course in sharing our knowledge, experiences and perspectives. There have certainly been some robust discussions.

In this sense, I feel that my experience in various industries and sectors allows me to have a good perspective to offer and I have gathered specialist category knowledge in fleet, security, telecoms, construction and utilities across my career which can be applied in a number of situations. I hope my colleagues and alumni will find my input as helpful in their development as their knowledge has been in my own thus far.