Tag Archive: supply chain

The Internet of Things is Trending in Supply Chain

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Internet of Things (IoT) is trending in supply chain circles. A buzz has started. According to a recent article on Kinaxis, IoT has nearly taken hold of every aspect of our lives. Can you believe there will be over 6 billion connected devices by next year? And that number is projected to increase to 20 billion by 2020. Watch out! A key question is whether we are ready for the stream of data coming from these devices and how we’ll handle it (and leverage it) in supply chain planning processes. For example, just think of the power of a simple Amazon…
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Time or Money – Which Gets the Priority?

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In today’s Amazon-impacted world, we believe in instantaneous delivery. It has become an expectation. Even my mom who orders on Amazon by calling me believes a two-day delivery is a bit long. After all, she might not realize she needs something until the last minute. Thus, which is more important – time or money? Here are a few questions to ponder when thinking about time vs. money: 1. Do you expect rapid deliveries across the board? 2. Are you willing to spend extra money for speed? Are your customers? Do you know this answer or are you guessing? 3. How important is…
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Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade and Compelling Timeless Experiences

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Last week, my brothers and nephew were in town for a vacation around Southern CA. One of our stops was Disneyland, and my brother Brian purchased lunch tickets that enabled us to have good seats for Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade. It has always been my favorite since my first trip to Disneyland on a family road trip from Chicago across country when I was quite young. See below…. how could it not be your favorite? Disney did a fabulous job of putting this together. They go the extra mile for the “little touches” that make the difference. In this…
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Amazon and Whole Foods

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Amazon hit the news big time with the purchase of Whole Foods. It even got my mom’s attention, and she asked the store manager if they would continue to exist. He assured her that they planned to stay. It just so happens that I spoke on the Amazon Effect at the Future Ports Annual Conference and at an IOT (internet of things)/ Supply Chain Data event almost immediately after the announcement. We had some fascinating discussions at the IOT event about Amazon and their strategy and impacts. Certainly this move will shake up traditional retail grocery stores! Are you thinking…
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Forecasting: How Far Should You Look into the Future?

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Whether setting strategy or designing a SIOP (sales, inventory and operations planning) process, one of the most important questions to consider in forecasting is how far into the future will you look? And why? As we think about whether the answer should be 1 month, 1 quarter or 1 year, check your thinking. When assessing the future it is important to think through the elements that may impact your forecast. 10 Questions to Ask When Forecasting and Designing SIOP 1. Do you have customer contracts in your business/ industry? If so, how far out do they go? 2. Regardless of the…
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VMI – Supply Chain Collaboration on Steroids

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Supply chain collaboration is in vogue. Customers have figured out that if suppliers have access to more information on what they need and what is important to them that they’ll typically do a better job of meeting those needs. Suppliers have figured out that the more they understand customers, the more likely they’ll be able to delight them while minimizing spending. And this type of thinking carries over to your suppliers’ suppliers and customers’ customers and all supply chain parties in-between such as transportation and logistics partners, trusted advisers and more. So, what are some of the ways supply chain…
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VMI – What are the Benefits?

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Vendor managed inventory can have many benefits – both from a strategic perspective and a tactical one. We are seeing that it is gaining in popularity as manufacturers and distributors and retail locations see the value of collaborating with supply chain partners to drive dramatic benefit across the supply chain. Several of the top benefits include the following: 1. Increased revenue – By partnering with customers on VMI and customer collaboration programs, you become a trusted and value-added partner. As new business opportunities arise, we’ve found that those who offer VMI typically have an advantage. First, the customer knows they will have…
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My Cat Has the Right Idea About Rest

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My cat Smokey decided stretching out on my computer was a good idea. He can rest almost anywhere! I think cats have the right idea about rest in that we all need to take a bit of time to rest and recuperate now and then. Perhaps you did that this Memorial Day weekend or just take a few hours of your day from time to time. I had a lighter week last week in terms of meetings and so I felt rejuvenated after getting all sorts of website updates done and to my webmaster while also taking time to enjoy…
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Amazon Is Going to Australia!

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Amazon has announced plans to go to Australia in a big way — of course! This has many Australian retailers unnerved while simultaneously providing Amazon with a new beachhead for its global distribution network. And, it appears as though Amazon might have a supportive regulatory environment for testing deliveries via autonomous drones and road deliveries since there are vast remote areas for potential deliveries. It certainly seems like Amazon is a company to watch… I asked my Australian consulting colleagues about this announcement, and their response was “Bring it on!”. Retail prices have been higher for quite a while and…
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New Survey Says Manufacturing Key to American Prosperity

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According to a survey by Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute, more than three quarters of Americans surveyed believe the U.S. should invest in the manufacturing industry. Nice to see what I see on a daily basis come to life and gain momentum! Specifically, more than 80% see manufacturing as vital to America’s livelihood, 76% believe the U.S. needs a more strategic approach to developing its manufacturing base and 90% believe manufacturing jobs will require a higher level of technical skill. Interestingly, the overall public ranked manufacturing 3rd, just after technology development centers and health care facilities, in terms of the…
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