Archive for supply chain visibility – Page 2

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 […]

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How Many Slaves Are in Your Supply Chain?

The collapse of the garment factory in Bangladesh last week, which killed at least 705 workers and injured thousands of others, has put a spotlight on a problem that plagues many supply chains: the use of slave labor. Coincidentally, at the Ariba LIVE 2013 conference yesterday, I attended a presentation by Justin Dillon, Founder and CEO of Made in a Free World, a nonprofit group that is “building a coalition of consumers, businesses, and governments […]

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Guest Commentary: Bakers Shoes Implements DC Bypass

In the retail supply chain, it is common practice for a foreign manufacturer to ship goods directly to a retailer’s domestic distribution centers (DCs), where goods are stored until being shipped to individual stores. In its simplest form, “DC bypass” takes one link out of the supply chain. Bakers Shoes, a specialty retailer of fashion footwear, worked with Descartes, a provider of supply chain execution solutions (and a Logistics Viewpoints sponsor), Transmodal, a provider of […]

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Guest Commentary: Achieving Agility in the Food Supply Chain

Supplying the nation with food is the most critical of functions, but one that comes with layer upon layer of complexity. In many ways, the supply chain of supermarkets and independent merchants is similar to those of any other retailer. Suppliers are spread around the country and the globe, and driven by customer demand for local, independent products, retailers must work with small, local farmers as well as with large multi-national suppliers. However, two key […]

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Guest Commentary: Supply Chain Resilience, Agility, Efficiency and Innovation

During her welcome remarks at the 2012 Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) Annual Conference in Atlanta, Nancy Nix, chair of the CSCMP board of directors, said that companies should judge the value of supply chains going forward by their resilience, agility, efficiency and innovation. This is a far cry from the traditional view of supply chains as a trade-off between costs and customer service. That got me thinking about what common thread might […]

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Google, Same-Day Delivery, and Container Tracking

Meet Google, your new supply chain and logistics technology provider. According to a New York Times article, Google has started to test a same-day delivery service in San Francisco with some Google employees and their friends. At least one national apparel retailer is participating in the test, according to a source. Although Amazon and Walmart have made headlines in recent months with their own same-day delivery offerings (see “On Amazon’s Quest for Same-Day Delivery” and […]

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Guest Commentary: 5 Essential Technology Questions to Ask Any Logistics Service Provider

You probably have a list of standard technology questions you ask potential logistics service providers. When you’re evaluating the technology of various LSPs, you can separate fact from fiction by asking a few simple questions. When pursuing a solution that obviously incorporates technology services it’s natural to investigate the provider’s technology. What surprises many companies is the importance of a provider’s technology even when the solution appears to not be technology-based. It’s an increasingly complex […]

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Guest Commentary: The 4 Building Blocks of Inventory Visibility

Achieving inventory visibility across the enterprise and extended supply networks has been a goal for supply chain professionals for over a decade, but achieving true visibility is no easy task. As recent analyst research indicates, while supply chain visibility is very important to almost all companies, there is a large gap between the importance of visibility and their ability to provide it to their organization. Most attempts have failed when trying to bring together all […]

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Guest Commentary: Considerations When Evaluating Supply Chain Visibility Solutions

Earlier this year, I put together a short list of “Big Box” retailers to evaluate for an upgrade to my entertainment system. As I visited each retailer and discussed my criteria and timeframe with them, it became very clear that two of the three retailers did not have a true end-to-end supply chain visibility solution within their company’s technology framework. Gaining access to accurate information was a painful experience for both me and the retailers’ […]

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Guest Commentary: Control Tower 2.0 – Managing Logistics Costs in a Risky and Volatile World

In today’s globalized and volatile world, leading companies are looking for ways to gain better information visibility so they have more control over outcomes when events negatively impact their supply chain. Many are looking to the concept of a “control tower” that provides centralized, near-real time, granular visibility to inventory positions as well as to inventory movements. These control towers continuously aggregate vast amounts of information from the extended network of suppliers and carriers, as […]

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