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"You-guys are forgetting something. As much as you want something to be
purchased, there is a company out there getting the order that wants the
order put through more than you. Enlist the vendor to help you get the order
through purchasing...their job and commission depends on knowing how to get
You are so right, John. When I was dealing with the by-now-infamous
purchase reqs during Christmas week, I was on the phone for hours with our
vendor (that big software manufacturer in Ann Arbor) and at least 15 other
employees there, my left ear ablaze. They wanted to get that P.O. processed
as much as I did, so I was getting urgent pleas from their cafeteria staff,
the IT department, and the maintenance crew outside shoveling snow off the
sidewalks. And all of us were at the mercy of the sob sister in Purchasing!
Our Beloved Vendor was calling about proposal signatures, the poor trainer
was asking if we still wanted to go through with the training, and everyone
was trying to get that paperwork processed before their flight home for
Christmas. We were comrades in arms, both fighting the good fight for our
companies. So how does Purchasing, the most boring department in the
company, wield such power? And how can we tech writers get a slice of that
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