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Supply Chain Management articles

Supply Chain Visibility: We Should Be Striving for More

For too long, supply chain visibility has been associated with pure track and trace and/or passive analytics. Our systems may provide some basic visibility but it’s visibility that is not actionable. It tells you what goes wrong but it doesn’t help you ensure that doesn’t affect your relationship with your customers in real-time leaving you better at planning but not better at executing that plan. The question is how do you make our visibility actionable? How do you encourage and implement your supply chain visibility to better optimize your processes in the moment? How can you truly make visibility a core competitive advantage for your supply chain?

How Retailers Unleash the Disruptive Power of Data to Drive Customer Engagement

Retailers and brands must transition from simply selling to customers to establishing relationships with them through personalized digital experiences driven by relevant content. Customers expect to be inspired, influenced, engaged and reassured that they have selected the right supplier and product. Customer experience defines a retailer’s success and this experience is the leading brand differentiator in a buying decision, leaving behind criteria such as product and price.

How To Spot Supplier Risk In Communication

The first article in a three part series on identifying risk, we review the troublesome behaviors you need to look out for when communicating with your suppliers. If you notice any of these signs when speaking with your suppliers, it may be time to take your business elsewhere.

Can Intermodal Become a Preferred Destination for Europe’s Freight Industry?

The European Union’s rich mix of cultures and working practices is one of its strengths. But in intermodal transportation these differences can impede future growth. One of the main goals of an EU-backed project called SMART-RAIL is to remove attitudinal and other barriers that prevent more freight from switching to intermodal in Europe.

Sustainability offers businesses opportunities for growth

You can’t miss the proliferation of green businesses on every level from small operators that avoids outsourcing in favor of local artisans, to big brands like Nike that promise to reduce their carbon footprint and improve working conditions for their employees. Going green is a great initiative: it helps to save the environment, and it makes customers feel good about their purchases while ensuring the local community is rewarded for their work.

More Amazon Effect For Omnichannel And The Future – Systemic Inventory Rich vs. Inventory Velocity

Inventory rich is a condition enjoyed by many retailers, manufacturers, and wholesalers. Much of this is due to systemic inventory. And the condition is becoming more significant as firms deal with the differing demands of omnichannel and with the accelerating requirements of lean for supply chain stakeholders. The challenge is compounded for companies that source and/or manufacture globally with their large supply chains.

Carrier Negotiations: It’s Won at the Line-of-Scrimmage

Many shippers believe they’ve already negotiated the best possible shipping rates. To be bold, they are wrong. The same way Cam Newton was wrong when he spent most of Super Bowl 50 on his back, thanks to Von Miller and the incredible Denver Broncos defense. The dangers of the “I’ve already won” mentality can blind-side the best of us. Whether it’s a competitive football game or negotiating your agreement with FedEx or UPS, complacency stunts growth, kills progress and—often times—moves us backwards. Continue reading to learn about the line-of-scrimmage to carrier contract negotiations and how shippers can develop their own playbook for steady forward progress.

The Internet of Things: Giving the World a Nervous System

What exactly is the Internet of Things? Even a quick perusal will convince you that the Internet of Things is going to mean different things to different people. For example, for the home owner it will mean more convenience, better efficiency, and increased safety. For manufacturers it will mean smoother operations, better quality, and increased profits. For the health industry, it will mean better care, improved diagnoses, and decreased hospital readmissions. You get the point. The infographic does note that the IoT is made up of three components: sensors; connectivity; and people & processes.

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What is Sales & Operations Planning?

Sales & Operations Planning: All demand (sales) and supply (capacity, materials) of a product is balanced and planned to secure on-time delivery...

6 Tips for Maximizing Efficiency and Productivity of Warehouse Operations

As a warehouse manager, you would understand that handling warehouse operations are a massive task. One small mistake may affect the efficiency and productivity of the warehouse. You must continually implement measures to optimize various warehouse processes and improve the overall effectiveness of the operations involved. Apart from minimizing downtime and increasing productivity, it is essential to improve your supply chain. Let us look at a few tips that help in achieving the same.

Robot Trucks or Autonomous Vehicles Will Revolutionize the Supply Chain

Most supply chain professionals do not completely understand the disruption and upgrades that autonomous vehicles, specifically what I call robot trucks, will create. Most cannot get past the pitfalls and possible barriers to robot trucks. I define robot trucks with a much broader perspective. I include trucks of all sizes and even internal plant material handling equipment like fork-lifts and automatic guided vehicles (AVGs). The biggest leap is that robot trucks will learn! Many doubters just cannot get past this. Although not complete artificial intelligence (AI), robot trucks will adapt on their own, to conditions and circumstances, and build an open memory of what to do.

Transform Your Supply Chain For Omnichannel

The world is in the early stages of a global supply chain revolution. The Amazon Effect. The Internet of Things. Platform Businesses. The new supply chain will grow beyond omnichannel. It will cross into other industries and markets and will incorporate supply chains of products, information, and finance. All the elements of the New Supply Chain tie together. They are not separate steps. They are not to be selectively chosen or excluded. These are inter-related. The New Supply Chain brings performance excellence.

The 4 Supply Chain Metrics

Metrics are a way to measure performance; and, in turn, communicate that information to key executives in the company.  Their value is how supply chain management is supporting the direction and strategy of the business.  It is important that they present a strategic and tactical understanding of what is happening and how well it is happening. KPIs (key performance indicators) must be measurable.  As a result, numerous metrics are about the logistics components.  Some of these are good.  However, they do not present a view of the total supply chain.  Plus, many have little or no usefulness for the C-suite.   Assessing logistics parts is a node-link approach and does not recognize the supply chain process.