CPO of the Year 2015

Telstra director honoured with prestigious procurement award

Richard Allen receives The Faculty’s ‘CPO of the Year’ title

Melbourne, Australia: Chief Procurement Officer (CPO) at Telstra, Richard Allen, was last night announced CPO of the Year by leading procurement consultancy The Faculty.

Awarded at the Asia-Pacific CPO Forum’s annual gala dinner held at the Eureka89, Melbourne, Mr Allen was chosen from a shortlist of top performing CPOs in the region.

Sponsored by WORKWEAR Group, part of Wesfarmers Industrial & Safety (WIS), the award highlights the importance of the CPO role in organisations by recognising CPOs who hold strong functional and technical expertise, commercial outcomes, demonstrate leadership influence and leverage the value of procurement across their businesses.

Responsible for all outsourcing decisions at Telstra, encompassing both local agencies and overseas partners with a procurement spend in excess of $12 billion, Mr Allen is credited with making a significant contribution to the telecommunications company’s customer-focused strategy over the past four years.

Richard was nominated by Robert Nason, Group Executive, Business Support and Improvement at Telstra, who said: “Richard has been instrumental in Telstra’s transformation over recent years, and his commercial leadership has helped Telstra strengthen its customer service offering.”

“He’s introduced innovative service evaluation, to measure and increase advocacy within Telstra’s suppliers, recognising that they are often our customers, too.

“Richard’s also led a widespread rationalisation of our supplier base, reducing it by 30 per cent, which benefits both our business and our customers.”

Another innovation introduced by Richard was his ‘reverse sourcing’ initiative where he achieved a 90 per cent change in payment terms from suppliers, which has unlocked a significant incremental cash benefit to the business.

Mr Allen’s ability to lead the procurement function through an extensive domestic change program and make a significant contribution to Telstra’s transformation is what captured the judging panel’s attention.

Judging Panel Chair Dr Karen Morley said: “The change Mr Allen has made at Telstra is a perfect example of how procurement can support a company’s value proposition, achieving cost reductions while adding significant business value.

“Richard’s ability to broaden the role of procurement across the business and reap such strong rewards is the result of his functional excellence, leadership, commercial capabilities and personal drive.”

The Faculty’s Founding Chairman Tania Seary said: “Making a tremendous impact on one of Australia’s largest corporations and driving real change across the business is far from simple – yet Richard has shown that his technical skills and leadership combined are a perfect formulae for success.

“The Faculty congratulates Richard and the procurement team at Telstra for all their achievements over the past four years, and hope that others in the industry learn from their excellent results.”

Established in 2012, the CPO awards program, a flagship initiative of The Faculty, was created to recognise and celebrate the achievements of procurement professionals across Asia Pacific.

WORKWEAR Group General Manager, Chris Jones, said that while procurement is one of the fastest growing professions in Australia, awards like CPO of the Year recognise the crucial impact procurement can have on business outcomes. “The CPO role is not just about sourcing and purchasing, but includes building or protecting brand reputation, mitigating risks and help companies deliver on their value promise.”

For more information on the Faculty’s CPO of the Year Award, please visit here.

About The Faculty

The Faculty is Asia Pacific’s’ leading procurement advocates, highlighting the integral role procurement has to play in protecting margins, brand and growth for over twelve years. Through consulting, professional development and creating knowledge networks for CPOs to share best practice learnings, The Faculty helps business to accelerate and optimise their procurement investment.


Award Partner - Workwear Group



The Workwear Group brings together the very best of the Australian workwear industry into a single, focused business. We’ve united iconic industrial and imagewear brands that have been clothing workers for most of the past century: KingGee, Hard Yakka, Stubbies and NNT.

Today, we’re the market leader in Australia, sending over one million garments to more than 30 countries across Asia, Europe, The Pacific and The Middle East.

Whether your organisation employs 10 staff or 10,000, we have the experience, the expertise and the passion to deliver the very best workwear solution for your business and your brand.