About me



Dave Barr, aka “The Real Life Buyer”

A Procurement Professional for over 25 years.

I started my career as an Engineering Technical Apprentice at 16-years-old. I graduated at 20 and moved into the world of Quality Engineering for the manufacture and testing of industrial diesel engines. I loved the world of Quality Management and studied this subject whilst stepping up and managed a team of inspectors ensuring parts supplied from around the world were to specification. Within a year a colleague and I started developing business systems and processes which led us to attain the BS5750 quality management system accreditation for the company.

After another year or so, an opportunity arose and I was drawn to a position living by the sea implementing BS5750 for a new employer, leading me to becoming a Quality Manager. Within a few years, my influence with, and support for, the Purchasing Manager grew, and I regularly attended supplier and business development meetings. This then led me to becoming the Purchasing Manager a year or so later, motivating me to study with the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply to gain my qualification and membership.

I must have been doing something right, as within a few years I was approached by the Group Purchasing Director of my 15,000-headcount global business and was offered the new position of Commodity Manager for Castings and Forgings with responsibility for over Euro 40 million spend worldwide. This exposed me to extended global manufacturing, international supply chain and logistics strategy and planning.

A few years later, a significant global manufacturer in the world of “war gaming” offered me their Head of Procurement Management position. This presented me further exposure to global manufacturing, warehousing, distribution and retail and further opportunities to globalise the supply chain for goods and services. After a wonderful 5 years, new opportunities arose again with a large business delivering significant investment and growth in UK infrastructure. Once again, I was plunged into the procurement of different products, services and now also facilities management.

After the birth of my son, my family yearned for us to return to the south coast of England. Fortunately another twist of fate enabled me to return to a former global manufacturer and employer, having now amassed further significant experience and knowledge. Many more happy years have passed and my thirst for outstanding business performance, leadership and management continues to drive me forward with high energy and enthusiasm. It is now with this knowledge and experience I have taken the leap of forming RLB Purchasing Consultancy to deliver on my passion to help businesses on their Purchasing and Supply Chain development journey at a time when cost increases and supply chain turmoil have never been greater.

I look forward to working with you.

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