Barbara Šmalc

University Graduate Economist

Barbara Šmalc earned a university degree in economics and started her career at Trimo in Trebanje. After graduating, she landed a job in the Municipality of Slovenske Konjice, and this short period was just a signal of what she would not want to do most of her life. In April 1997, she landed a job at Trimo’s purchasing department and remained here. Luckily, she came to a company that stood firm on its beliefs and orientations of what it wants and where it intends to go. She got a job among people who knew, wanted and were always willing to help, guide and teach her. And that was it. After the initial work as an administrator in purchasing and cooperation, in 2001, she took over the head of software procurement, later the entire purchasing, and in 2014 the purchasing, logistics and planning sector. Between 2017 and 2020, she trained for a short time in Livar in Ivančna Gorica and Reflex in Gornja Radgona, and since 2020 she has been responsible for the entire supply chain in the company Preis Sevnica.

She is also active in the Purchasing Association of Slovenia, where she is a member of the supervisory board and the first purchaser to receive the award Purchasing Manager of the Year. She has had quite some experience in the purchasing sector, almost 24 years, but she still wakes up in the morning with that “I feel so purchasing today” feeling and that’s it.

A Purchasing Strategy in Practice – The Case of Preis Sevnica

The COVID pandemic simply happened to us, and we simply did not have a direct impact on it. How to proceed? What to focus on? Is our strategy still effective, or do we need to modify it? Or change it at all? Maybe it will be short-lived, and it will pass, and we will go further than before… A bunch of questions started to arise in this situation, but we quickly realised that there will not be much time and that it is necessary to react. “Hoping for the best, prepared for the worst, and unsurprised by anything in between.” Maya Angelou was somehow on our minds. How to maintain relationships? What happens to deliveries? Panic!? We had no experience, but we had to prepare very quickly and decide how to proceed and learn. Once the first shock subsided, we somehow incorporated the new way into our day-to-day operations and moved on. As we all know, purchasing is continuously changing and evolving, and anticipating certain risks and dealing with them, or they simply happen to us, is a great challenge. That’s the charm of purchasing. And that’s why we’re here.