Archive for Supply Chain Planning

Optimizing the Panama Canal’s Operations

The Panama Canal is quite the engineering feat, described by some as the eighth wonder of the world. It is especially interesting to those in supply chain and logistics, as it is a critical resource in support of today’s vast international trade. It is also a complex operation subject to high levels of traffic with numerous constraints that can impact many company’s supply chain schedule. Modern supply chain planning applications model complex planning and scheduling […]

Read More →

An American Steel Company Transforms their Supply Chain into a Competitive Weapon

An American steel manufacturer began its journey toward making their supply chain a competitive weapon in 2010 when they implemented a new Integrated Business Planning (IBP) process. Since then, the company has improved its delivery performance from the low 60s to over 90 percent; their quoted lead times are now the shortest in the industry.

Read More →

Ten Years of Logistics Technology Trends

Last week I read the Logistics Viewpoints guest post by Chainalytics discussing the pitfalls of decision-marking biases. Although the Chainalytics article focuses on supply chain decision making, these biases can apply to business forecasting as well. Reading this article made me interested in my own potential decision-making biases. I chose to take time on Friday to review some of the research I have conducted during my ten years as an analyst at ARC Advisory Group. […]

Read More →

Supply Chain Planning (SCP) Software Market’s Increasing Sophistication

In September I began, in February I reflected on, and this week I completed ARC’s Supply Chain Planning Global Market Research Study. I’m going to take this opportunity to summarize some of the study’s key findings. Supply Chain Complexity Meets Planning Intricacy Global supply chains continue to be increasingly complex. This is not only due to outsourcing and an ever extending supply chain, but also due to competitive forces such as shorter product lifecycles and […]

Read More →

S&OP and Analytics at Forefront of Supply Chain Planning Initiatives

In September 2015 I began the update of ARC Advisory Group’s global supply chain planning (SCP) market study. In a Logistics Viewpoints article published at that time, I discussed some of the major changes in SCP over the previous decade.  I am now concluding this SCP market study update. I have spoken with the vast majority of large SCP software suppliers within the market, discussed their companies’ SCP product roadmaps, learned about the evolving requirements […]

Read More →

Revisiting Supply Chain Planning

I chose “Revisiting Supply Chain Planning” as the title for this blog post because I believe the phrase captures both the current focus of my research agenda (what I am doing) and the heightened priority SCP has taken on the agenda of many supply chain executives (what practitioners are doing). Earlier this week, I began updating ARC’s Global Supply Chain Planning (SCP) market study, last published in 2013. It’s worth noting that the SCP study […]

Read More →

Is Supply Chain “The” Source of Greater Economic Stability?

On Saturday I engaged in a rare weekend activity for myself – I actually thought about supply chain. I thought about the transition from “push” processes to greater use of demand pull in replenishment; how retailers are sharing downstream POS data with their suppliers to develop a more efficient supply network; how multi-echelon inventory optimization is now widely adopted; and how lean manufacturing and inventory management practices have evolved. In general, I was thinking about […]

Read More →

Two Ways Supply Chains Can Remain Strategic to Business

Supply chain management is a critical function at any business that involves production, distribution, or inventory management. But being a critical function does not make it strategic in the traditional Michael Porter definition of providing a unique, valuable and sustainable competitive advantage. So, how can the supply chain management function elevate itself to that of a strategic function that provides the critical capabilities that deliver sustainable advantages? Critical Supply Chain Linkages Over the last few […]

Read More →

How Diageo’s Supply Chain Delivers Growth-Driving Innovation

Last month I wrote a Logistics Viewpoints article titled “A Maturity Model for Supply Chain Progression?” In this article, I contended that the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index (CGI), which measures national economic competitiveness, can also serve as a maturity model for supply chain progression. The CGI framework outlines 12 pillars of competitiveness and categorizes economies into three progressive stages of economic development. The three stages are 1. Basic, Factor Driven; 2. Efficiency Enhancers; […]

Read More →

Visibility Drives Iterative Planning and Execution

Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it. That applies to supply chain operations as well. If we don’t learn from what is happening day-by-day in our supply chains, we are doomed to repeat disconnected planning processes that lead to mismatches between supply and demand. These mismatches are costly and can lead to service problems such as out-of-stocks and over-stocks. But with fires to fight every day it’s hard for supply chain managers to […]

Read More →