MT 436 Purdue Global University Unit 2 Barriers to Integration Discussion & Responses

Initial Post

Barriers to Integration

Chapter 4 has a major focus on “integration,” which is defined as “the process of incorporating or bringing together different groups, functions, or organizations, either formally or informally, physically or by information technology, to work jointly and often concurrently on a common business related assignment or purpose.” This sounds wonderful, but in reality it is difficult to achieve due to many barriers.

What are some barriers that you can think of which may interfere with integrating the purchasing process with the rest of the organizational effort?

  1. Provide a real example, from your work experience if possible or from research.
  2. Conclude by describing how you think this barrier may be removed so efforts to integrate stand a better chance of success

I also need responses to the following posts from classmates

Collaboration has always been an important aspect within the organization that I work for. A recent example is turning our offsite storage facility into a shippable location and satellite branch/warehouse of our business. This requires pulling multiply teams together to discuss things like, is it in the budget, can it be done, how do we incorporate our technology out there, who will man it, what equipment is needed out there. So far, the process is slow going as we are currently facing quality push back in terms of proper receipt, inspection and temperature control, those need solutions first before we proceed on. Additionally, we have to notify our vendors, suppliers, 3PL logistics and carriers of delivery expectations–which location to deliver to and update processes. I feel the barriers which are occurring are necessary to ensure all details are given attention, so to do it right. When you’re working on a large project as such it’s important to understand the problems which can occur so to figure out a solution before going live.


Years ago, I had the opportunity to work in the procurement department for the same company I’ve been at now for over 15 years. This opportunity was an eye-opening experience in revealing the struggles of integration that the company had. Prior to joining the procurement team, I had years of exposure working with the engineers, designers, suppliers, customers, and document controllers. It seemed natural for each of these departments to focus internally and that there was little to no integration. As I joined procurement, with the experience and relationships I had with other groups, a main conflict observed was the act of pointing fingers at others for failures which seemed to land mostly on procurement. Procurement was the scapegoat for a lot of problems that could have been avoided if the different groups had worked together. Barriers included communication and process maps that kept a division between business groups. There were also many occasions of maverick buying where engineers or designers attempted to engage in the purchasing process without the proper people involved. Breaking down these barriers, such as including procurement members in project meetings and involving suppliers earlier in the design process improved overall organizational success. Nowadays, in my role with customer service, procurement activities are necessary for supporting field engineers at customer sites. We have recently initiated efforts of integration to bring the field office coordinators together with supply chain management to ensure consistency and compliance in purchasing activities. Implementing a more reliable supply chain system such as Coupa has helped with the integration as it allows both departments to work together and transmit requests and data. Regular meetings and collaboration between different business groups with procurement has substantially increased the company’s competitive edge, internal culture and relationships, and forward-looking process changes.


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