Skip navigation
1 2 3 Previous Next

21st Century Supply Chain

1,039 posts
by Alexa Cheater

It’s Time for the Evolution of Supply Chain: 4 Characteristics to Watch for With Supply Chain 2.0

evolution of supply chainThe right product, at the right place, at the right time. The decades-old challenge of supply chain is now more difficult to solve than ever before. Globalization, market volatility, demanding consumers, vast amounts of data—it’s no wonder past strategies are failing to solve today’s mounting challenges.

 

With complexity growing, an evolution of the supply chain needs to begin now. Not just to solve current problems, but to be better prepared for future ones. But how are companies going to be able to adapt? How are they going to take advantage of existing opportunities to capture market share, increasing brand loyalty and profitability?

 

According to global services firm Accenture, the answer lies in the evolution of supply chain. It lies in Supply Chain 2.0! In the firm’s recent white paper, Supply Chain For a New Age, the authors, Mohammed Hajibashi and Ashoo Bhatti, map out a next generation supply chain blueprint.

 

Getting to the next generation of supply chain capabilities would require breaking down functional silos, redefining priorities, and building synchronized planning and fulfillment capabilities.”

 

They describe the characteristics of Supply Chain 2.0 as:

 

  1. Rapid: Enhanced responsiveness; proactive prevention; last-mile postponement. Examples include demand sensing, automated KPI reporting real-time planning and execution, dynamic inventory replenishment, and a robotic workforce.
  2. Scalable: Maximum efficiency; organizational flexibility; highly-evolved operating models. Examples include reconfigurable supply networks, lightweight SDA, cloud-hosted optimization tools, and a digital products supply model.
  3. Intelligent: Actionable insights; automated execution; enhanced, accelerated innovation. Examples include predictive maintenance, predictive forecasting, integrated optimization, supply and price analytics, “what-if” scenario analysis, and cognitive computing.
  4. Connected: Real-time visibility; seamless integration; personalized experiences. Examples include connected infrastructure, ecosystem collaboration, transportation control tower, social product development, track and trace, and external data exploitation.

These are enabled by six core building blocks:

 

  • Rapid and responsive consumer-driven supply chains
  • An integrated operating model that breaks silos and provides connectivity
  • Performance management that’s aligned across the organization
  • Clear and differentiated supply chain segmentation strategies
  • End-to-end supply chain collaboration within the organization and across external trading and service partners
  • Digital capabilities and a technology platform able to support all of this

The transformation from current supply chain operating models to Supply Chain 2.0 isn’t simple. Supply chain strategies are at a crossroads, and not addressing today’s challenges will be an equation for losing revenue. Businesses need to recognize the urgency in moving forward. Because if they don’t, the pressure to adapt and survive will only continue to grow.

 

The Supply Chain 2.0 framework can help companies profitably meet future demands. For a more detailed explanation of how, check out Accenture’s whitepaper, Supply Chain for a New Age.

 

The post 4 Characteristics of the Evolution of the Supply Chain appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Alexa Cheater at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/4-characteristics-evolution-supply-chain/

by Dr. Madhav Durbha

The Higher Purpose of Supply Chain Management

Supply Chain ManagementMy wife’s phone rang as we were driving home from the restaurant. I turned off the music and the kids had gone quiet as she answered the phone. It was a distraught mother at the other end of the line. She was nervous and was calling about her toddler’s fever that would not go down. My wife talked to her in a calm voice, told her what she needs to do for the night to keep the fever under control, and advised the mother to bring her toddler to the clinic the next morning. With her nervousness abating, the mother profusely thanked her and hung up. As a parent of young children myself, I can very much appreciate the difference a physician, like my wife, makes in the community.

 

As we reached home, I retired into my study and picked up the Ken Follett thriller where I left off. I was trying to read, but the thought kept running through my head. Yes, both my wife and I are career-minded professionals. We both are in our professions to be successful, make money, and enjoy the pleasures that life has to offer. But is there a higher purpose to what we do?

 

There certainly is a higher purpose to what my wife is doing. One wellness visit, one infection cured, one disease diagnosed at a time, she is making a difference. The results are very tangible. But what about supply chain management professionals like me? Is there a higher purpose to what we do as executives, consultants, planners, or technology providers? As I pondered upon this topic, the answer turned out to be a resounding yes. Here are few examples of how supply chain management professionals make a difference in the world:

 

  1. We deliver products that save lives: Some of the organizations my company partners with to solve their supply chain problems manufacture lifesaving drugs for rare diseases. The men and women in these organizations make decisions every day to plan, make, and deliver drugs to those in need.

    There are times when they run into challenges such as a bioreactor contamination or a customs clearance hold up. Then they need to respond rapidly and decide how to allocate the short supply of medication to ensure the patient’s needs are met, all in the context of the regulatory environment that life sciences companies operate under. A drug not delivered on time or an order misplaced could be life or death for a patient. Yes, we in supply chain make life saving decisions very frequently. Perhaps, not unlike a physician.
  2. We deliver smiles and surprises: Do you know of a child or a loved one who waits until last minute to ask Santa for her wishes? If you are like most people, the answer in all likelihood is yes. How do you think Santa is able to deliver the goods with just a day or two lead time? The supply chain professionals are the elves behind the scenes ensuring the orders get delivered, one parcel at a time. Think of the order processing, picking, packing, and shipping that is involved behind the scenes while ensuring the orders get to the right place at the right time in the right quantity. Yes, Santa has a big job delivering, but there is a complex machinery called supply chain management that is behind the scenes, delivering surprises and smiles to millions!
  3. We keep the earth clean: By understanding the consumption behaviors and demand signals, we process the right amount of materials and produce the right quantity of the product when needed (Just in Time, anyone?). By doing this, we save energy and water. We lower carbon emissions by helping optimize transportation, one truckload and one route at a time. We minimize wastage by reducing obsolete or unused inventory and maximizing shelf life of the product. This in turn reduces the burden on the world’s landfills. We make the environment more sustainable by conserving the natural resources for many more generations to come.
  4. We are the gears that turn the economic wheel: Supply chain professionals across industries plan and execute to effectively utilize the manufacturing and distribution assets, to efficiently procure by ensuring global visibility of procurement needs, and to maximize productivity of the people involved while minimizing the organizational stress in the face of rising complexity and volatility. These are men and women who turn their company’s supply chains into the efficient operations that contribute to the broader economic activity and wealth creation.

I was jolted out of my thoughts as my eight-year-old walked into my study. “Dad…. You need to help me with this homework assignment”, he said as he placed a sheet titled “Jobs we do” in front of me. The instructions said to complete the questionnaire with a parent’s help.

 

He read the first question: “What is your profession?” I said, “Supply chain management”, and he noted my answer on his paper. Then came the next question: “Explain what people do in your profession”. I took a pause and answered, with a twinkle in my eye and pride in my voice, “We make the world a better place one production order, one shipment, and one delivery at a time!”

 

The post 4 Ways Supply Chain Management Has a Higher Purpose appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Dr. Madhav Durbha at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/4-ways-supply-chain-management-higher-purpose/

by Teresa Chiykowski

Yeehaw! Top 5 Reasons to Attend Kinexions ‘16

You’ve got this piece of wood and some wires, pickups and some strings. How somebody uses that
configuration to make something memorable.

Don Felder, Lead Guitarist, The Eagles

 

don-felderWhy am I quoting Don Felder of the iconic band The Eagles? Good question.

 

Felder’s description of a guitar isn’t unlike what we do at our supply chain conference, Kinexions every year. We pull together some essential components to make something memorable for customers and employees. It’s what keeps folks coming back year after year.

 

Kinexions ‘16 promises to be no exception.

 

Offering a star-studded lineup of speakers, customer presentations, breakout sessions, training and foot stompin’ good fun, Kinexions ’16 is sure to be a number one hit again. If you’ve never attended Kinexions, and wondering why you should, here are the top five reasons to join us in Music City U.S.A. for the hit supply chain conference of 2016

 

  1. Real life supply chain success stories
    Captivating customer sessions will give you ample opportunity to hear how market-leading companies are achieving unprecedented business results through the power of RapidResponse. For example, on the main stage catch presentations from Ford, Roland and Xilinx.
  2. World-class keynote speakers
    Be inspired, motivated and entertained with our keynote presentations:Future of Supply Chain: Be Prepared to Work Hard to Rock On! (Kevin O’Marah, Chief Content Officer, SCM World). supply chain professionals to have a whole new set of capabilities for deeper demand and supply sensing as well as radical new ways to respond with agile operations.Kevin will explore the capabilities supply chain professionals will need to respond to the challenges of the supply chain future.

     

    • Future of Supply Chain: Be Prepared to Work Hard to Rock On! (Kevin O’Marah, Chief Content Officer, SCM World). supply chain professionals to have a whole new set of capabilities for deeper demand and supply sensing as well as radical new ways to respond with agile operations.Kevin will explore the capabilities supply chain professionals will need to respond to the challenges of the supply chain future.
    • People, Process and Technology – A Musical Perspective (Don Felder, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Member, Former Lead Guitarist for The Eagles). Don will take attendees on the ultimate journey from heaven to hell and share what it takes to collaborate your way to success.
  3. More opportunities for RapidResponse learning
    Take advantage of two full days of RapidResponse pre-conference training and onsite Kinaxis Certification being offered at 25% off the regular list price. Choose from 11 product-specific courses across five different tracks.
  4. Conference tracks to meet your needs
    Join our presenters as they focus critical supply chain topics, including organizing for success, preparing for the future, achieving volume, functional business planning.
  5. A focus on fun
    Kinexions ’16 isn’t just the ideal opportunity to learn, share and connect. It also offers up a healthy helping of fun and activities, including a 5K fun run, early morning yoga, welcome reception, and our Customer Appreciation Night at the world-famous Wildhorse Saloon

Now for a trivia question… What Nashville resort and convention center contains nine acres of indoor gardens complete with 44-foot cascading waterfall?

 

Answer: The Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center – host venue to Kinexions ’16. We hope to see you there.

 

Register for Kinexions ’16 today!

 

The post 5 Reasons to Attend Kinexions Supply Chain Conference appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Teresa Chiykowski at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/5-reasons-attend-kinexions-supply-chain-conference/

by Jonathan Lofton

Design for the Supply Chain Pt. 10: Environmentally Friendly

It’s been a long time; I shouldn’t have left you, without a new blog to read through!

 

Now reread that with the rhythm and voice of “I Know You Got Soul” by Eric B. & Rakim. I was waylaid, but let’s get right into the next principle in the “10 Principles of Good Design” as applied to green supply chain and green supply chain management (Design for the Supply Chain).green supply chain

 

Principle #9: Good design “Is environmentally friendly”

 

“Design makes an important contribution to the preservation of the environment. It conserves resources and minimizes physical and visual pollution throughout the lifecycle of the product.” – ‘Dieter Rams: ten principles for good design’

 

I was talking with my good friend and colleague Dan Fischer about the blog series and mentioned this principle. He told me about cases he had seen with some clever work on re-usable packaging, where the supplier’s packaging can be taken into its customers’ facilities and is either used to move the resulting product through the process and on to its next destination, or the empty containers go back to the supplier for use in a future delivery.

 

This really requires end-to-end thinking about the supply chain and close collaboration between the partners in that chain. He also pointed me to How Novelis is Lightening Ford’s Load on the New F-150 Pickup, an interesting article that talks about…

 

“Novelis, the world’s largest aluminum recycler, showed Ford how it could afford the switch to higher-priced aluminum (adding about $750 per truck) by using recycled scrap instead of buying virgin aluminum mined from bauxite.

 

Together they created an innovative supply chain that allows Ford to recover a big chunk of its aluminum costs by selling the scrap back to its suppliers and reusing it. This is done by capturing the approximately 40% scrap metal from the vehicle body panel stamping process, separating the aluminum alloy scraps and sending them back to Novelis, which reprocesses the aluminum and ships giant coils of aluminum back to Ford’s stamping plants where the vehicle body panel stamping process begins again.”

 

These are great examples of ‘preservation of the environment’ and ‘conserving resources’ throughout the lifecycle of the supply chain. Given the focus in recent years on ‘green’ supply chains there are hundreds of other examples, including ‘minimizing physical pollution’ (see the Green Supply Chain – A Supply Chain Digest site). But what about ‘minimizing visual pollution’?

 

Wikipedia says, “Visual pollution is an aesthetic issue and refers to the impacts of pollution that impair one’s ability to enjoy a vista or view.”  This is generally talked about in terms of obstructing the natural environment and I know we can all give natural environment examples (railroad tracks, exhaust from manufacturing facilities, chemical runoff, etc.) so there’s no need to cover that ground.

 

In terms of management of the supply chain, we talked previously about the supply chain design being unobtrusive, aesthetic, and useful, which included the psychological and aesthetic appeal factor that makes it fun and interesting both for the owner and the consumer of the supply chain.

 

So I’m going to postulate that visual pollution can be thought of as any ‘irregular formation’ that obstructs or distracts us from being able to focus on (and enjoy) management of the supply chain. For me, this would include poorly designed scorecards / dashboards / reports, cumbersome collaboration tools, lack of data integration, restrictive systems (e.g. not allowing me to do real-time what-if analysis), etc.

 

As we enter the age of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) we need to keep all these design principles in mind to create solutions that don’t obstruct or distract us but actually enhance the psychological and aesthetic factors of supply chain management.

 

My parting question this time is, “What do you consider visual pollution in the supply chain?”

 

Want to learn more about Design for the Supply Chain? Check out the rest of the series:

 

The post Design for a Green Supply Chain appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Jonathan Lofton at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/design-green-supply-chain/

by Alexa Cheater

A collection of bad supply chain poems: volume 2

Poems about Supply Chain Management Software After the success of last year’s bad supply chain poems, I’ve decided to resurrect this cringe-worthy tradition in honor of Bad Poetry Day. So sit back, kick your feet up, and prepare to be amazed by the literary talents of the Kinaxis team around today’s supply chain and our supply chain management software.

 

Dawn of a new supply chain
By Alexa Cheater

 

Down with Excel,
Let’s turn supply chain planning on its head,
No more hours compiling data in spreadsheets we dread!

 

It’s time for a new way,
Much better than before,
Where teams work together, instead of in silos or behind closed doors.

 

The future is now,
And it sure is bright,
Features like adaptive collaboration and concurrent planning mean sleep-filled nights.

 

The speed and flexibility,
Oh what a treat,
A truly responsive supply chain just cannot be beat.

 

But how can this be,
The naysayers all ask,
‘Isn’t achieving this some kind of gargantuan task?’

 

Believe in the change,
And you’ll soon see,
Delivering this revolution is part of the Kinaxis story.

 

We’re here to help,
To show you the way,
Your victories are ours at the end of the day.

 

So take that first step,
Be brave and be bold,
Together we’ll create a supply chain to behold.

 

Transformation
By Helen Malacrida

 

There once was a sad executive
And a very overworked customer service representative
They called up Kinaxis
RapidResponse turned their world on its axis
Now periods with great KPIs are consecutive

 

Bad Warehouse
By Alvaro Fernandez
A complete disorder
Really fit for a hoarder,
A floor full of pallets
Sorted out with no talents,
Such a great giant challenge,
For a brave valiant planner!

 

Sooner knowing. Faster acting!
By Andrew Dunbar

 

Demand has shifted,
Your priorities are skewed.
What can help you respond?
Your scorecard, when viewed!

 

Looking for problems
Early on in the day.
What needs your attention?
Your dashboard will say!

 

Addressing an issue,
Your inventory is messed!
Wondering what to do next?
Your task flow knows best!

 

Concerned by a trend,
Supply plan needs some checks.
You need to see details?
Your workbook is next!

 

When something goes wrong
With your inventory flow,
How goes your plan?
Alerts help you know!

 

Need help from a colleague
To make your plan gel,
Who should you ask?
Responsibilities can tell!

 

When grouping your products,
Customers, and sites,
How do you keep sorted?
Hierarchies shed light.

 

Data bucket
By Joe Cannata

 

There once was a man from Nantucket
Who put a value in a date bucket
His head was so strained
He never got trained
So he decided to just say ______________

 

Power of Kinaxis
By John Westerveld

 

There once was a planner from Texas
Who’s supply chain software was feckless
He cursed and he swore
But not any more
Because now he uses Kinaxis.

 

Ode to SCM
By Amy Eyman-LeBlanc

 

I make stuff.
I sell stuff.
I send stuff.
If only….
I had a tool to figure out all the stuff in-between.

 

InvenStory
By Steve McStracivk

 

There once was an Inventory Manager with much excess,
Knew this wouldn’t help her company’s success.
She tried many a scenario,
Collaborating she found she could transfer to Ontario,
Wonder’s what mess they’d be in without Kinaxis!

 

Life is good
By Helen Malacrida

 

Missing KPIs
If you have RapidResponse
It never happens

 

Still haven’t had your fill of supply chain poetry, be sure to check out last year’s gems if you’re in need of a good laugh or share your own supply chain poetry in the comments below!

 

The post Poems about Supply Chain Management Software appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Alexa Cheater at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/poems-supply-chain-management-software/

by Melissa Clow

How to Get Supply Chain Into the Boardroom

This guest post comes to us from Argentus Supply Chain Recruiting, a boutique recruitment firm specializing in Supply Chain Management.

 

Supply Chain ManagementOne topic we keep returning to on the Argentus blog is the issue of Supply Chain raising its profile within business. We’ve discussed the emergence of companies hiring Chief Supply Chain Officers, as well as Supply Chain’s ascension into the most high-impact role in business: the CEO function. Suffice it to say that companies around the world – including some of the most relevant and innovative companies – are placing an increased amount of responsibility on the long-undersung function of Supply Chain Management, a function that, until recently, companies saw as a back-office, transactional aspect of business that didn’t have a big role to play in innovation and competitiveness.

 

No longer. We loved this recent major feature in Supply Chain 24/7 about how far the field has come, as well as how Supply Chain leadership can get more buy-in from executives at their companies.

 

It’s a meaty feature with a lot to dig into, but we wanted to highlight a few points and mention our own take.

 

There’s a common refrain among Supply Chain – and Procurement – Professionals that the board “doesn’t understand” the value that they bring to the table. This feature does a good job of describing how it’s the Supply Chain function’s job to make corporate leadership understand their value, and it also offers some great approaches for doing so:

 

Supply Chain leaders need to establish their reputations as trusted business partners. Crucially, they need to establish ways that Supply Chain is a driver of innovation and revenue growth rather than cost-cutting. One interesting take is that companies actually tend to take Supply Chain’s cost-cutting for granted.

 

They need to provide quantified metrics that board members can understand. Fill rate and asset utilization, for example, don’t mean much to board members, so Supply Chain professionals need to work to translate Supply Chain success into financial metrics that are understandable to the wider business community.

 

They need to identify Supply Chain ambassadors to help interface the function with the rest of the company. They need to be able to speak simply about Supply Chain issues, without resorting to jargon. From our perspective, time and again this “translation” is the critical and most difficult part of becoming a Supply Chain leader – but companies reward people who are able to do this handily.

 

One of the greatest points that the article makes is that part of the reason Supply Chain doesn’t get its fair shake in boardrooms is because it tends to play more of a supporting than starring role. But more than ever, that supporting role is incredibly crucial to support almost every one of the more “flashy” activities a company does a company does, from launching new products to expanding into new countries. In the authors’ words: “providing truly distinctive customer service or expanding into new markets is unthinkable without a world-class Supply Chain to support the chosen strategies.”

 

The article identifies how miscommunication, more than anything, contributes to misconceptions that companies have about Supply Chain. For example, many people still think Supply Chain is a fancy term for Logistics, rather than a broader practice that provides companies with an overall understanding of their resources up and down the value chain. As a result, some companies have rebranded their Logistics function as “Supply Chain” without broadening the function’s responsibility. Another major misperception is the (outdated) idea that Supply Chain is only about cost cutting and the timeliness of deliveries, when in fact it’s now a driver of revenue growth. The Supply Chain 24 / 7 feature identifies tons of revenue opportunities that Supply Chain supports, for example enabling product customization, reducing lead time, entering new channels (e.g. online), and accelerating product launches. When board members understand these opportunities, Supply Chain will have a seat at the table – and it’s up to all of us in the field to communicate its value and make that a reality.

 

We certainly encourage everyone to check out the feature. There are too many great insights about the Supply Chain field in it to draw attention to in one blog post. But we’re glad to see so many practical tips from a publication that recognizes Supply Chain is about to have its day in the sun.

 

We think it’s about time as well.

 

 

 

The post Supply Chain Management Moving Up the Business Ladder appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Melissa Clow at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/supply-chain-management-moving-business-ladder/

by Kevin McGowan

Update on the Vinyl Record Supply Chain

vinyl record productionIn my first post on this subject, I discussed how the resurgence in vinyl record production has been a struggle. There are a limited number of producers all working 24-7, and it’s difficult to keep up with demand. The renewed interest in purchasing music in this physical medium has meant a massive increase in sales, year over year, but it has also meant slowed production, and availability delays.

 

The challenges are even greater for small independent record labels, as their orders often get pushed out in favour of large orders from bigger music companies.

 

In the 6 months since I wrote that post, the tides have begun to shift in the vinyl record supply chain. There are new vinyl pressing plants opening on a regular basis. The latest has made a lot of press in Canada, and it is poised to become the second-largest vinyl pressing plant in North America. Talk about a shakeup!

 

I got in touch with Gerald McGhee, who has been the President of Isotope music for two decades, but he is now also the Executive Vice President of Precision Record Pressing, based in Burlington Ontario. I asked him a few questions about their business plan, and their supply chain challenges.

 

Why did you decide to take this project on? And why such a large scale?

 

What we noticed at Isotope, was that our suppliers Warner, Universal, and Sony were having a bad supply issue. We wanted to help, and they said that if we went ahead with this project, they’d support it.

 

So it seemed like the next logical step for us to venture into the manufacturing end of the music business.

 

What are the biggest business challenges you had in setting this up?

 

Finding machines! The old ones are not reliable, and even if they were usable, they were not being used. People either wanted too much money or were not willing to sell to keep the market under-fulfilled and keep out new competition.

 

There is a great demand for this product, how do you plan to fill the supply gap?

 

Taking care of the Canadian labels and independents first. This will help us eliminate their problem of not being able to get pressing time with other plants. And we have new reliable machines! Also, my partner’s been pressing records for 65 years, that’s a lot of expertise. It gives us a solid base and we feel confident with these factors will help change the industry and turnaround times.

 

How many units do you think you’ll be producing per week/month/day?

 

For 2017, we expect to produce 4 million units, so that’s 330,000 per month, around 12,000 per day. If you can believe it, we are already talking of expanding.

 

What issues do you foresee with your supply chain, in order to get the raw materials you need?

 

None! Since our partner GZ has made the machines, they will also supply us with all components needed.

 

So, no supply issues? How much raw material do you need from GZ to support the business?

 

All our compound will come from GZ. They make their own, which is specific for these new machines. Also, we bought a printing company which will allow us to make the album jackets, download cards, etc. all in house.

 

One issue we talk about a lot in supply chain circles is competing demands. How do you plan to balance demand from large companies (Warner) and small companies (indie)? How would you handle this to please all your customers?

 

Our presses are perfect for smaller runs. Which, we intend to leave space for the smaller indie labels and bands but because we have 10 presses this will allow us the capacity to handle the bigger orders as well from the majors.

 

You wouldn’t get into this without doing heaps of research and due diligence. What does the future hold for vinyl records, in your opinion?

 

They project 30% growth for the next few years. Like all things, there will be a slowdown. But if you are leading with quality, technology and great service this will go on for a very long time.

 

I was told in 1996 that I would last 3 years. We are now in our 20th and growing tenfold over the past 5 years. The guys who said I would not last are all gone now!

 

What an interesting story. Thanks so much for sharing it with us Gerald!

 

The post Vinyl Record Production Supply Chain Update appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Kevin McGowan at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/vinyl-record-production-supply-chain-update/

by Bill DuBois

Kinexions Logo KinaxisKinexions is Ready to Rock Your Supply Chain! October 10-13, 2016 | Nashville, Tenn.

Get ready for a rockin’ good time as Kinexions heads to Nashville! Get front row seats to chart top supply chain strategies, exciting networking opportunities, and access to fun-filled after parties. It’s all happening at our annual training and user conference at the Gaylord Opryland in Nashville, Tenn. on Monday, Oct. 10 through Thursday, Oct.13.

 

With a content line-up not to be missed, you’ll have ample opportunity to hear from world renowned companies like Ford, Gilead, and more speak about their supply chain triumphs on the main stage. Plus, we’ll be featuring even more customer stories during our fantastic breakout sessions with four amazing tracks to choose from:

 

  • Preparing for the Future
  • Achieving Value
  • Functional Business Planning, and
  • Organizing for Success

But wait, there’s more! Get your learning groove on with two full days of intensive RapidResponse product training. Amplify your knowledge, acquire new skills, and take a deep dive into a product that can revolutionize your planning.

 

We’re even offering a 25% discount on our phenomenal Kinaxis Certification, which will be available onsite!

 

As if all of that weren’t enough, we’re also throwing one heck of a party. Our famous Customer Appreciation Night will be an unforgettable Nashville-style event held at the legendary Wildhorse Saloon!

 

Kinexions’ 16 is guaranteed to have you singing the tunes that will rock your supply chain. So hurry and register today to the hottest supply chain conference in town!

 

The post Kinexions: Kinaxis Supply Chain Conference 2016 appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Bill DuBois at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/kinexions-ready-rock-supply-chain-october-10-13-2016-nashville-tn/

by Palvashah Durrani

Supply Chain DataThe Devil is in the Data Details: Entering a New Global Market

So you’re about to launch into a new global market. It’s thrilling, full of potential, and has its own set of opportunities and challenges. One of these challenges that you might not think of immediately is big data in your supply chain—specifically the quality of your data. What might seem like a minor detail, such as differing measurement systems, can dramatically affect how effectively your supply chain functions and how well products move to market.

 

Here are 7 data issues you might need to watch out for:

 

7. Currency

This is probably an obvious one. You’ll need currency conversions at sales points, but you’ll also benefit from accurate currency conversions at your assessment and planning levels.  For example, tracking revenue in each location’s currency helps you to assess those values within that market context. Failing to accurately convert costs into the same currency as the price for a product can lead to inaccurate margin calculations and erroneous profit values.

 

6. Measurement System

This can vary from using the metric system instead of imperial measurements to using the right shipping dimensions. Inconsistent and incorrect dimension data can result in products that don’t fit into shipping containers, that are properly processed at distribution centers, or that fit on store shelves.

 

Improper configuring of shipments can also lead to issues. For example, you might have ordered 100 items with the expected configuration of 4 boxes of 250 items. If you receive those 100 items in a 10 x 10 configuration, that order doesn’t exist with that configuration or date in your system, so it can’t be processed at your warehouses. You end up with ghost inventory – excess inventory that physically piles up at your distribution centers but doesn’t exist in your system of record.

 

5. Clear Communication with your Suppliers

Something as straightforward as shipping dates can wreak havoc on your supply chain if you and your suppliers are not clear on what a shipping date actually means. For your company, a shipping date might mean the date the shipment arrives at your distribution center. If your supplier takes the shipping date to be the date they ship the order out, then you can end up with late stock, stalled orders with long lead times, or shipping and delivery delays.

 

4. Tariff codes missing or incomplete

To stock products, you need to enter information about each item into an ERP. It could be dozens of fields for a single product, and the system requires correct data to function properly and ensure products move as anticipated.

 

3. Inappropriate Forecasting

In a brand new market, you have no historical data to generate any sales or other types of forecasts. While it might be tempting to substitute historical data from what seems to be a similar market on the surface, you may actually get stuck with highly inaccurate and misleading forecasts guiding your business decisions.

 

For example, Ottawa and Calgary are two Canadian cities with similar-sized populations. While they seem to have some parallels (same country, similar population size, some language requirements) they are very different markets and what works in one city might not work in the other. Using historical data from one city to generate forecasts for the other city is random. This method doesn’t even account for the fact that you are a newcomer in the market and have to draw customers from established rivals.

 

2. Vague or inconsistent data

Accuracy matters. Whether it is about numerical values or product descriptions — accuracy matters. Just as miscalculating the available date for a product can hamper your sales cycle or entire value chain; vague descriptions, missing information, and typos can also be detrimental. Providing too little or no information can lead to confusion, wasted time, and possible mistakes. Typos are mistakes, plain and simple, and can be very difficult to discover after they are in your system.

 

1. Incompatible systems

Communication and the flow of data between different systems needs to be smooth, reliable, and functional. If the data at your distribution centers cannot sync with orders in your ERP, product will not move, orders will not be filled, and your customers will not be satisfied. Systems that are incompatible will inevitably lead to complications in your supply chain operations.

 

To conclude, the quality of your data can impact your entire value chain – from confused shipping dates to inaccurate forecasts to ghost inventory. In a new market, if enough of these data quality issues are compounded, they can severely damage your value chain, your reputation, and your business.

 

The devil is truly in the details.

 

The post 7 Avoidable Data Errors in Your Supply Chain Data appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Palvashah Durrani at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/7-avoidable-data-errors-supply-chain-data/

by Dr. Madhav Durbha

Career advice for supply chain professionals. Emerging technologies such as Internet of Things (IoT), Cognitive computing, and Augmented Reality are creating new challenges and new opportunities for supply chain management (SCM) professionals. Rise of real time technologies are blurring the lines between planning and execution. Cloud technologies are speeding up the consumption of newer technology innovations being rolled out.

 

While this technological shift is happening, the complexity of supply chains is growing. The strategic thinking and problem solving skills needed to handle this complexity are facing serious shortage as highlighted by a 2015 Wall Street Journal article. This asymmetry between the demand and supply of SCM talent creates a great opportunity for those who are willing to go the extra mile, making them extremely valuable within their organizations and in the broader market. Given these dynamics, here are few tips for the early to mid-career SCM professionals on taking your career to the next level.

 

1. Look beyond your current role: There is increasing realization in the industry that one needs to look at the supply chain holistically in an end-to-end manner beyond the traditional functional domains such as demand planning, logistics, procurement planning etc. For example, an upcoming promotion may need to be executed in conjunction with production and replenishment planning or else one might run the risk of stock outs while also incurring the added cost of promotion. Such risks are becoming more front and center for executives as the world around us turns more complex and volatile.

 

A recent white paper on Supply Chain for new age introduces the notion of a “Network Planner” who would plan across the end-to-end supply network. Such roles will become the norm and will be highly visible within organizations of the future, setting one up for a great career. However, in order to prepare for such roles, you will need to think beyond functional silos and build deep and broad supply chain domain knowledge. But how can one obtain such knowledge? That brings me to my next point.

 

2. Leverage low cost, self-paced learning programs: In order to cultivate end-to-end supply chain expertise, consider doing certifications offered by professional associations. APICS offers CPIM and CSCP certifications which are well recognized designations in the industry. I personally have benefited tremendously from these certifications by taking them early in my career. APICS recently introduced a CLTD certification track geared towards Logistics, Transportation, and Distribution professionals, which one can look into. CSCMP which is another highly reputed organization offers a SCPro certification track. Such certifications are designed for full time professionals, with self-study mechanisms and are offered at an affordable cost. Several employers reimburse for such certifications as part of career skills development.

 

With the advent of IoT and Big Data, organizations are looking for signals beyond the four walls of their enterprises. They like to understand the opportunities and risks to their supply chain by harnessing the power of this data. Machine learning plays a critical role in sifting through all this data, identifying patterns, and delivering insights to SCM practitioners. Investing in learning this rapidly evolving subject will take you places. I would highly recommend Coursera’s Machine Learning course taught by Professor Andrew Ng of Stanford University, a great course offered for free. You can also learn by being a voracious reader of trade journals and many high quality websites where you can find SCM articles.

 

3. Network your way to success: While the self-study methods help you gain foundational knowledge, connecting and collaborating with your colleagues at work is another great way to learn. Ask them what challenges they face in their jobs and how they go about solving them. Think of how you can make a difference to them and implement your ideas with their support. Beyond your company, attending professional networking events/conferences organized by your SCM software vendors, professional associations, or by the industry analysts are a great way to network and be exposed to newer forms of knowledge.

 

Signing up to be a speaker at these events can help synthesize your learnings and hone in your presentation skills. Most packaged software vendors also have active user groups/user communities. Volunteer by sharing your knowledge within these groups. If you like to share your learnings with your network by blogging, LinkedIn or your company’s blog site are great ways of doing it. Active networking will help build your professional brand within your company and in the industry. As you progress in your career, the professional network you build and nurture will become more useful and more leverageable.

 

4. Find a mentor: Look for someone you can trust within or outside of your company with whom you can openly discuss any challenges you encounter in your day-to-day job or simply brainstorm ideas for career progression. I have gained a lot personally and professionally through various mentors who coached me through my career. Most of these mentors are selfless givers with no expectation of a payback. The best way to repay your mentors is by paying it forward, i.e., by mentoring others. I personally find mentoring others hugely fulfilling and empowering. I also learn a lot simply by synthesizing and articulating my thoughts as part of these mentorship conversations.

 

5. Be ready when the opportunity arises: As the saying goes, luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. While #1 through #4 above help you to prepare when the opportunity presents itself, you will need to take the initiative and throw your name in the hat at the right moment. The opportunity can be a new SCM initiative in your company, or simply someone above you moving on to a different role. I know of very many individuals who take all the necessary steps in terms of preparation, but are too comfortable in their current roles that they feel it is risky to embark on a new assignment. If you are of this mindset, I will remind you of what I said at the outset. Deep SCM domain skills are very hard to come by. By taking the preparatory steps mentioned above, you will make yourself a strategic asset. If one opportunity or assignment does not pan out, the next one will be around the corner. So go on, take some chances and rise to a new challenge!

 

Hope you find this advice helpful. Would love to hear of any other tips you like to share!

The post Career advice for supply chain professionals appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Dr. Madhav Durbha at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/career-advice-supply-chain-professionals/

by Steven J. Puricelli

Last month, I launched a new blog series on sales and operations planning (S&OP). I outlined a number of important topics I plan to explore this summer. Building upon my post about the ownership of S&OP, it’s time to talk about defining the operating model for S&OP. Executives frequently ask: “How should I structure S&OP and organize it to account for different divisions, brands, or geographies”?

 

One of the more difficult aspects to get right behind a good S&OP process is the underlying structural design…or what I call the operating model. Most S&OP teams are tasked with managing an extensive and complex web of functional departments, sub-processes, products, customers, brands and geographies. A foundational framework that creates the appropriate intersections and touchpoints is imperative for S&OP to function effectively. When I reflect on leading S&OP processes, two key foundational aspects are always present: 1) a well understood conceptual model and 2) a well-defined structural model. They help define the operating model for S&OP.

 

Conceptual Model
The purpose of the S&OP process, which I discussed in my second blog, is to enable cross-functional information sharing, trade-off analysis, and decision making for the supply chain and overall business. The S&OP process is a broker of information…or to use one of today’s common supply chain buzzwords, a ‘control tower’. A recent Accenture article describes the importance of eliminating the disconnect between sales and supply chain, which is what a proper S&OP operating model seeks to create. This part of the S&OP operating model is as much a cultural mindset as it is something that gets defined by tangible organization charts or team diagrams. High performing S&OP processes do a tremendous job sharing information efficiently across the organization using a hub and spoke model as shown in the figure below…there’s incredible communication and alignment.

 

Accenture S&OP Team

 

I will talk about ways to help enable this information sharing and how organizations are using technology to support communication in a future post. When alignment or information sharing is lacking in an organization’s S&OP process, two scenarios oftentimes emerge as a result of not having a clearly understood (or adopted) conceptual model.

 

Common Scenario #1: Point-to-Point – In a point-to-point model, as shown in the figure below, information flows between nodes, but not through the centralized S&OP team…or information hub. Functional departments connect directly and bypass other nodes, resulting in inconsistent information sharing. Certainly there are times when it’s appropriate and expected that functional areas on the S&OP team will connect directly on specific topics or action items, but key information, decisions, and plans need to flow through the entire team. Thinking about a football analogy, it’s similar to a quarterback only telling half of his teammates on the field what the next play will be.

 

S&OP Team function

 

Common Scenario #2: Functional Gaps – In some operating models for S&OP, functional nodes are often missing as shown in the figure below. Information sharing is occurring, but without key functional departments that are likely needed for input into a decision. The essence of this issue was aptly stated by a client years ago: “our S&OP process is more like O&P”.

 

Accenture S&OP Functional Gaps

 

Desired Conceptual Model: Hub and Spoke – A proper conceptual model for S&OP is one that is structured as a hub and spoke as shown previously. Functional departments share information through the S&OP process…with the S&OP team lead acting as an information broker, not a filter. This last point is important – good S&OP processes function not only by sharing information freely, but also openly. As noted in the point-to-point model above, there’s an inherent information filter built into that model which restricts information sharing and alignment.

 

The first aspect of defining a proper operating model for S&OP is to establish a hub and spoke design that the organization engages with and embraces. Enabling this type of structure requires a collaborative mindset, one of integration and alignment across departments… time to break down those functional silos in your organization.

 

Structural Model
The second component supporting the operating model for S&OP is the functional structure. S&OP is a complex process that has a number of dimensions that must be ‘structured’ to operate effectively.

 

To get started on the design, consider outlining the different elements within demand and supply that S&OP must address and identify the appropriate intersection points.

 

Accenture S&OP operating model blog

 

As noted in the table above, the S&OP dimensions (as well as stakeholders) on the demand and supply side are very different. High performing S&OP processes successfully address the intersection of the two sides and have an appreciation for how information is used. It goes without saying, the demand side processes in an S&OP cycle need to be structured around the customers, channels, and brands that inform the forecast. However, the operating model and process need to be structured around the consumption and usage of information further down in the process…by the supply side stakeholders in this example. Similarly, the same thinking needs to be applied to geographies or regions and channels or customers. It doesn’t matter which dimension we’re talking about, what is important is that the structure of the S&OP process appropriately considers how the team will use the information.

 

Too often demand plans or forecasts are simply not usable or “digestible” by the supply side stakeholders. As an example, a demand forecast by brand or product family (where the individual SKUs are supplied by multiple factories or assembly lines), is meaningless to the supply planning team. Manufacturing doesn’t care about the forecasted demand for a brand…what they care about is within that brand, how much demand is supplied from which factories or lines. In high-performing S&OP processes, the demand forecast may be viewed and analyzed by brand or product families (rightly so), but it will also be structured to provide the same information by factory so aggregate capacity plans can be examined. As shown in the figure below, the demand forecasts are structured around brands (comprised of different product types or formats), yet the S&OP operating model pivots to address the needs on the supply side (in this example, the different product types or formats are manufactured at different factories). When this structural component is missing in the operating model, information sharing and team alignment fails.

 

Accenture demand supply side

 

Typically, the structural model for S&OP starts with the demand side dimensions, but it will pivot at the intersection point where other stakeholders need to consume the information. Certainly there are data and system capabilities to enable the slicing and dicing of data to give each stakeholder the view and level of information they require, but at the core of the operating model design, is the consideration of the stakeholders and their use of information in the S&OP process. Organizations with leading S&OP processes appreciate how each member of the S&OP team needs to look at information…not just how one department needs to look at it. All the processes, reports, and discussions in meetings center on this pivot point and common structure.

 

Let’s continue the dialogue online about how to define the S&OP operating model. Up next: An exploration on the importance of the workforce involved in the S&OP process.

 

The post What is the Operating Model for S&OP? by Accenture Strategy Guest Blogger appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Steven J. Puricelli at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/operating-model-sop-accenture-strategy-guest-blogger/

by Alexa Cheater

Connecting the DataStruggling with the reality of not being able to easily consolidate data, global telecommunications company Sonus Networks was dealing with delays in understanding the impact of changes to its supply chain plans. The result was difficulty in meeting customer demand in a timely and efficient manner. To combat its planning issues, Sonus took four steps to improve demand, reduce inventory, and share information better across the entire network.

 

  1. Connect the Data

Sonus worked to seamlessly connect data from multiple sources, including traditional enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, existing Excel spreadsheets, and even its customer relationship management (CRM) tool. Prior to this data synchronization, it took days to develop forecasts and involved extensive manual data entry and manipulation. Each quarter more than 1,200 line items had to be updated or added to the existing ERP tool just for locked forecasts alone. This resulted in forecasts that were inflexible. Sonus just wasn’t nimble enough to react quickly to actual demand changes, which were happening on an almost daily basis.

 

Now forecasting takes just hours. When a change does need to be made, instead of holding another meeting, planners can discuss options on the fly, with the most up-to-date data at their fingertips. Data manipulation is now a simple two-step process. No more wasted time manually entering thousands of line items. Its planners have saved about a day’s worth of data entry and collection per week.

 

  1. Speed Up S&OP

With faster forecasting came the opportunity for Sonus to speed up its sales and operations planning (S&OP). Historically a very laborious process for the company, finding what needed attention was painful and slow. Asking ‘what-if’ often resulted in the need for subsequent meetings just to determine the possible outcomes.

 

The S&OP cycle has now become a smooth monthly process, with a high level review involving the executive team. Data-driven conversations are at its heart, and Sonus now has the ability to respond to changes faster with continuous planning, monitoring and responding.

 

  1. Validate Opportunities

By importing opportunities from its CRM, Sonus can run different scenarios to ensure it has the necessary supply to meet the potential new demand. Some of the most significant benefits has been to drive projections, which facilitated a decrease in required warehouse space and an overall inventory reduction of 20%.

 

“Using what-if scenarios allow us to determine almost instantaneously whether or not we’re able to accommodate a change request or potential new order,” says Laure Morgan, S&OP Demand Planning Manager, Sonus. “It provides us with the necessary information to make decisions on whether to change the forecast and build plan at the factory.”

 

  1. Tell the Complete Story

By connecting data, speeding up S&OP, and validating market opportunities, Sonus has created the ability to tell the complete supply and demand story. Knowing where the company is, how it got there, and directions it could take in the future is providing a brighter picture. More meaningful conversations are now happening across the company.

 

“We can get ahead of potential problems and immediately begin talking to sales, operations, product line managers, or anyone else who may be involved, instead of just reacting and communicating the impact after the fact,” Morgan explains.

 

Combining these four steps has enabled Sonus to improve daily operations in demand and supply management, inventory optimization, and S&OP. It is now able to provide customers with real-time feedback on orders. Sonus has been able to close the loop on its supply and demand plans, allowing for rapid collaborative change management.

 

Download Starting the Conversation: Improving Demand Planning Through Information Sharing, to learn more about Sonus’ journey.

The post 4 Ways Sonus Improved Demand Planning and Reduced Inventory by 20% appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Alexa Cheater at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/08/4-ways-sonus-improved-demand-planning-reduced-inventory-20/

by Joe Cannata

Kinaxis Certification SequelIt’s always a summer of sequels at the cinema box office. Whether it is your favorite comic book action film from Marvel, a third Star Trek film, finding Dory’s parents, more Conjuring, an alien resurgence or even more of Jason Bourne, there always seems to be another story to tell. Back on January 13th, my Let’s Talk Certification blog detailed the announcement and the launch of the Kinaxis Certification Program, with our two original exams, Certified RapidResponse Author Level 1 and Certified RapidResponse Administrator Level 1. We rolled those out at KinectED, our annual knowledge sharing event for Kinaxis employees and partners. There was a lot of interest, a lot of studying, and a whole lot more of exams being delivered. My version of a sequel is to update our readers on how we have evolved since January.

 

Certification Sequal 1

 

Here are some of the candidates taking the exam back in January

 

We started at a count of 1, with our own Senior Solution Consultant, Graeme Walker, receiving the first Kinaxis Certification.

 

Certification Sequal 2

 

It is now six months later, and the program has had great adoption, steady growth, and a broad expansion. We have a total of four exams, with the two newest being Certified RapidResponse Contributor Level 1 and our first high stakes proctored exam, Certified RapidResponse Author Level 2. Since the launch, we’ve certified over 215 individuals, and handed out over 375 credentials to our candidates. We’ve certified people across the globe, from many different customers and partners. We also have certified a large contingent from within Kinaxis, demonstrating their superior knowledge of RapidResponse. As the base of RapidResponse users, consultants, support people and Center of Excellence staff grows, so does the interest in the program. Information about the program is readily available. There is full explanation on the Kinaxis website in the Certification section.

 

We have expanded our presence in the Supply Chain Expert Community with a dedicated page for certification. From that page you can see some statistics and certification facts, access and download the exam study guides and references, and watch a few videos. There is even a video to explain how to add your Kinaxis certifications to your Community profile, so you can show off your mastery to others.

 

We have a certification portal, CertMetrics, which enables you to perform many activities:

 

  • Download your certificate and logo
  • Post your certification to your LinkedIn profile with one click
  • Get and send a transcript of your credentials
  • Set your opt-in choices

Access to CertMetrics is granted when you achieve your first credential. An automatic email is sent 1-2 business days after completion of your exam.

 

Kinaxis CertifiedWith our first Level 2 exam, now the program includes testing with Pearson VUE, at any of their 5000+ worldwide locations. All level 2 exams and above will be delivered in proctored environments at Pearson VUE testing centers.

 

Watch for us at Kinexions `16, where we will be offering certification testing from 8am – 5pm Monday through Wednesday and 8am – 4pm on Thursday. All exams will be available at a 25% discount during the event.

 

I would love to hear your comments about our program. Please email me directly with your feedback or questions, or send it to our certification inbox certification@kinaxis.com.

 

The post Let’s talk certification, the sequel appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Joe Cannata at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/07/lets-talk-certification-sequel/

by Alexa Cheater

Supply Chain Lessons

 

Inheriting an organization facing one of the toughest retail environments in history, Mike Duke helped Walmart, the world’s largest retailer and biggest private employer, navigate an intense period of economic, social, and technological change while delivering strong financial results. As CEO from 2009 to 2014, he worked to restructure the company and made sure it not only grew, but grew with integrity.

 

Named one of Forbes top 10 most powerful people in 2013, Duke built his expertise by learning from and interacting with everyone—from world leaders to first time Walmart customers. Coming from a logistics and distribution background, he helped the company enter Africa and grow in China, Latin America, and other markets.

 

As one of the keynote speakers during Gartner’s Supply Chain Executive Conference, he shared seven important lessons he’s learned over the years. While not directly about supply chain, they can all easily be applied to managing the complexities of this rapidly changing industry.

 

  1. Get Things Done

A lesson taught to Duke from his parents, the importance of hard work shouldn’t be underestimated. When it comes to supply chains, changes to the plan are inevitable, but the key to successfully overcoming unexpected challenges is to respond effectively and efficiently. That means getting the information you need quickly in order to make an educated decision collaboratively and with context.

 

  1. Know Your Strengths

A lesson Duke learned from his high school physics teacher, is once you know your strengths, leverage them. When it comes to supply chain, it’s all about knowing your market segmentation. Is there a particular geographic location you tend to perform better in? Is one product out performing another? It’s not necessarily about only focusing on those areas you excel at, since then you’d be limiting your growth potential, but rather, about examining those strengths in your supply chain to see if and how you can leverage learned best practices to improve other aspects.

 

  1. Focus on People

Walmart was built on the founding principle that everything the company does should have the customers’ best interests at heart. So should your supply chain. With the growing trend toward consumers wanting what they want, when they want it, and where they want it, your supply chain has to be adaptable and agile enough to meet those demands. By getting to know your end customer better, you’ll be able to make adjustments to your processes to serve them better. Speak to customers and colleague about what’s really going on. Then take those insights and put them into action to directly improve customer satisfaction levels.

 

  1. Set Aggressive Goals

By aiming high and providing a clear path to get there, you can help your supply chain grow. Allow your team to rise to the challenge and find innovative new ways to reach those stretch goals. But don’t be afraid of failure. One of Duke’s other words of wisdom is to fail quickly. Once you know something isn’t working, don’t be afraid to pull the plug and try something new. Experiment, evaluate, and repeat.

 

  1. Always be a Student

I’m a firm believer there is always something more to learn, and it would seem so is Duke. He explained how he took every opportunity to learn about his customers. He would go to various stores and speak with staff and customers. There’s benefit to doing the same with your supply chain. Learn from your suppliers and customers, and then take that knowledge and use it to improve your efficiency. Don’t be afraid to learn from others within your organization. Duke mentioned some of his most valuable lessons came from teammates, as they often have experience in areas you may not.

 

  1. Do Business With Integrity

Duke says this was probably his most important lesson. Act with integrity when dealing with customers and staff. In supply chain, this can be connected to the increasing push for supply chains to be transparent, sustainable, and ethically responsible. Know the impact your supply chain has on the environment and all the people along the way—right down to the worker who is harvesting the raw materials. Visibility is the key to achieving this, and only looking at your top tier suppliers is no longer enough.

 

  1. Trust Your Family

In this case, your team is your family. You have to trust and respect the people you work with. You have to believe they are doing their best for the business, just like you are. By building that trust, you build stronger relationships, and by building stronger relationships, you allow your team to work more collaboratively, more effectively, and ultimately, in a manner that’s more profitable for your supply chain. We’ve mentioned it countless times on this blog, but with the supply chain talent wars heating up, your team has rapidly become your most valuable asset in managing your operations. So make sure you treat them well.

 

What life lessons have you learned that translate to supply chain management best practices? Let us know in the comments.

The post Seven Supply Chain Lessons from a Former Walmart CEO appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Alexa Cheater at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/07/seven-supply-chain-lessons-former-walmart-ceo/

by Melissa Clow

This guest post comes to us from Argentus Supply Chain Recruiting, a boutique recruitment firm specializing in Supply Chain Management.

 

Everyone knows the Supply Chain field is changing. Recently, one of the best Supply Chain Publications out of the U.S., Supply Chain 24/7, released a report that examines the demographic trends underlying the industry. The report, titled “A Portrait of the Supply Chain Manager,” used research survey data from Peerless Research Group and APICS to present a picture of the typical individual working in Supply Chain. The survey asked a number of Supply Chain and talent-related questions, such as:

 

  • What percentage of Supply Chain professionals received a raise last year?
  • What percentage of Supply Chain managers hold a degree?
  • What percentage of companies are willing to pay above-market compensation for the right people?

And more. These issues are sure to be of interest, whether you’re looking to hire in Supply Chain or just to get a holistic picture of the field. So we put together this spiffy infographic that highlights the answers to these questions and some other interesting datapoints from the report. Check out the infographic below!

 

 

 

supply chain

 

We hope you found the infographic informative, and we encourage you to dig into the full report for even more insights about where Supply Chain professionals stand and where the field is going. And (as always) stay tuned for more info and perspective about Supply Chain and talent from Argentus in the coming days and weeks!

The post Infographic: Examining the Demographics of the Supply Chain Industry appeared first on The 21st Century Supply Chain.

 

blog-email-supply-chain-for-a-new-age-kinaxis

 

Originally posted by Melissa Clow at http://blog.kinaxis.com/2016/07/infographic-examining-demographics-supply-chain-industry/

Filter Blog

By date:
By tag: