Category: Organizational Development

Professionalism

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In a recent strategy meeting of our local APICS chapter, we stated our primary Mission as: “We Develop Professionals”. APICS is an international professional society that has become a recognized source for education and certification of Supply Chain and Operations Management professionals. As a chapter, we hold “professional development meetings”, provide “professional” training courses, seminars, and workshops, and offer “professional support” for our student chapter. Often we hear people say “he or she is a real professional”, but what does that really mean?
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The Secret to Successful System Implementations

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I’m in the middle of helping a client implement a companywide system and the challenges and issues we are facing in this effort remind me of the importance of the basics I’ve written about before. As I have said in earlier articles, large scale implementations are complex undertakings whose success is by no means ensured. Studies have shown implementations fail almost as often as they succeed. The secret of success is understanding that there are two major deliverables in every system implementation: Getting the solution ready for the business and Getting the business ready for the solution.
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Learning from the Pain: Gathering Lessons Learned after an ERP implementation

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Someone once said that ERP implementations, “are the corporate equivalent of a root canal.” That feels like a good analogy to me right now. No matter how well you plan and how well you execute that plan, there is always something that causes you pain, but we can reduce the pain by gathering lessons about what happened and applying them to the next implementation. Lots of people talk about gathering and applying lessons learned after a big event like a system implementation but very few do it in a way that is effective. I use a 3 step process to ensure that meaningful lessons are developed and applied.
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Start Process Improvement by Getting the Facts – A Case Study

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I am often called upon by clients to help them improve one or more of their business processes. Though the industries vary and the processes are different, when asked to help improve a process I always start in the same place. What are the facts; how do we get the facts? If you have processes that needs improving, I suggest you start by getting the facts. Understand what metrics are in place and what they are telling you. Use the facts to keep people aligned and motivated on the effort required to make improvements
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Risk in Global Supply Chain Is on the Rise

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According to the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS) risk index, risk is the highest since 2013. It is easy to become complacent. Are you adding risk into your supply chain conversations and plans? The increase is driven by supply chain risk in Western and Central Europe, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa. Specifically: Western Europe – This trend is clearest in Western Europe, where risk rose to 2.63 in Q3 from 2.60 in the previous quarter. The uncertainty around the post-Brexit relationship between the UK and the European Union has had a negative impact on trade…
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Why Marketing Shouldn’t be Overlooked with SIOP

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I’ve been partnering with clients to design and implement SIOP (sales, inventory and operations planning) programs the last several years as I’ve found them to be a GREAT way to achieve several results simultaneously: 1) Support growth, 2) Improved service levels/quicker turnaround of deliveries (shorter lead times), 3) Improved margins and efficiencies, 4) Accelerated cash flow; and 5) Improved employee morale and teamwork. Although the technical side plays an important role (figuring out future demand and aligning with manufacturing, staffing, suppliers etc.), the aspect that generates the best results is that it aligns the executives and functions within the organization (and…
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Empower Your People to Grow

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Businesses must capture opportunities rapidly to outpace their competition. Thus, it is even more important to be the best at identifying, prioritizing, and implementing opportunities which will deliver bottom line business results. The time to leapfrog your competition is now. Why is empowerment the key to success?  Empowered employees achieve substantial results which also tie directly to what’s required to succeed in the new normal: 1) Reduce costs & delays. 2) Deliver exceptional service. 3) Innovate in alignment with vision. Or, just think about the Ritz Carlton. Their employees are empowered and will make sure their customers are happy. If you’ve experienced the…
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Building a World Class Workforce

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Customers in the global economy are more demanding than ever before. They can be; there is more competition than ever before. Customers take it for granted that you will deliver a low cost and high quality product or service. Now on top of that, they demand it faster and customized to their individual needs. To be a survivor in the marketplace today you must produce world class quality products and services, designed to meet the specific customer’s needs, deliver them quickly anywhere in the world at a competitive price.  The company that seeks to become world class will have to create…
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Executive Summaries on Enterprise Apps© Number 6: Managing Differently After Implementing ERP

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What do you, yes you, the senior executives of the company do differently the day after your new ERP is up and running? The correct answer is everything, but we’ll focus on three specific items. Organizational Design Process Design Business Metrics
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Executive Summaries on Enterprise Apps© Number 2: Three reasons to implement a new ERP system

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A new Enterprise Requirements Planning (ERP) system can be an expensive and risky undertaking. I advise my executive clients that the decision to replace the existing system or to implement their first ERP system should be driven by one or more of the following three Decision Drivers. To improve profitability and cash flow To solve problems with existing systems To improve operations
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