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  • 10 Oct 2017 2:37 PM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    By: Muddassir Ahmed 

     

    As most of us know, finance is an important function to any organisation as the company has to know how viable its balance sheet and profit and loss (P&L) statement is. The head of this function generally titled as Finance Manager is amongst the key supply chain stakeholders in my opinion.

     

    Generally finance managers are responsible for business activities like budgeting and sales forecasting, accounting, reporting, bookkeeping, audits, payables and receivables, pay employees wages and salaries, prepare and plan internal financial information and prepare for never ending audits!

     

    However, nowadays they are require doing more to involve in innovation initiatives, helping create vision and strategy and get involved in employee engagement initiatives. In my opinion it is important that supply chain folk have a good understanding of finance. And how this function can contribute to the success of the jobs we are in. This will ensure that the business can effectively manage the money we are saving as supply chain and procurement individuals, else we are spending in various commodities.

     

    So if you need slightly better chance of succeeding at your business goals and mission here are 5 good reasons why your finance manager is amongst your key supply chain stakeholders:

     

    1.   Finance can help you to show impact on bottom line

    As supply chain professionals we are always involve in cost reduction, inventory management, sales forecasting, supply management and many other activities which impact companies’ bottom line. If you are good friends with finance they can help you present the numbers in user friendly  way, that highlight the saving you are making and making a solid impact to bottom line. The can also help you show solid audit trail of these savings.

     

    If you are driving any E&O and Inventory reduction initiatives they can help you create provisions for dead inventory, identify cost elements which impact most or even stock accuracy! These are just one of the very few examples why finance colleagues are one of your key supply chain stakeholders and how they can help you showing impact to bottom line.

     

    2.   They can help you in your budgeting and profit planning

     

    All supply chain and procurement managers have to submit or give their input annual budgeting and profit planning. In the early days of my Supply Chain Manager role, I found this task daunting, to the extent that I often questioned my manager with why exactly was I having to do this? You can guess the answer!

    Your finance manager can help you with the process and provide your right guidance on how you can work through the input data, how you can sanity check your output and give you comparatives to validate your data.

     

    For example entries like direct labor in warehouse, employee salaries, office suppliers, training and travelling budgets, Inventory budget, capital expenditure are typical items you have to deal with when you’ve been ask to put your annual budget! If you know them all great, if you don’t then you might want to tell your finance colleagues they are one of very important supply chain stakeholders!

     

    3.   They can help you fit in with business culture

     

    When you are new in a company or someone new in the job it is important to understand the culture of the business. Considering supply chain and procurement are mostly viewed as cost center, adding little value apart from year-on-year saving. As these diminish, supply chain folks are forced to critically understand the wider business. Your finance leader can help you understand wider business and culture to learn what else is important.

     

    4.   You can make them look good!

     

    Yes, we can also make finance guys look good. Not just our friends, in sales, customer service or marketing. For example, one of the task finance managers has to provide most accurse sales forecast for next year. So if you are running a well-oiled Sales & Operations Planning process you can provide sales forecast date for next 12-18 months which can be the most reliable input to profit planning.

     

    Furthermore, in most businesses finance folks are responsible to providing forecast of inventory, cash flow, profit and loss all these financial aspects where we as supply chain professionals as massive impact (link to point 1 above). If we can provide reliable data which help them forecast these financial schedule with increased reliability and in turn we can make them looks good. What is in it for us as supply chain team? As they say in English…

     

                “You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours”   

          

    5.   Finance can help you priorities strategically.

     

    In my experience most supply chain jobs are very operational and tactical in nature. Someone is wrong somewhere every day.  The only day when something is not wrong, it is either or Christmas Eve, Christmas Day or New Year’s Day! This makes our job very ‘reactive’ and ‘tactical’.

     

    It is not all about avoid price increase, increased performance, service levels, and implications of risk. We ought to be responsible for giving input to strategic direction to business. So in all the day to day chaos around us, a day with finance guys off site just to discuss strategic topic can do wonder!

     

    Conclusion:

     

    There are many other reasons why finance managers and their teams are amongst your supply chain stakeholders which could be very specific to your business. I have only tried to mention a view based on my experience.

     

    We as supply chain and procurement professionals should be seen as promoting integration with other functions and ingrain themselves into stakeholder communities, acting as advisers and internal consultants, and generate outside the box ideas. 

  • 14 Aug 2017 11:09 AM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    By: Muddassir Ahmed

     

    In a JIT supply chain, reliable suppliers will reduce supply uncertainty and make the supply chain more effective, therefore supplier selection is crucial. However, Purchasing in JIT environment is different and therefore it requires a slightly different mindset for selecting suppliers who can survive in JIT Supply Chain long term. Researchers1 suggested that the selection and evaluation of supplier’s ability to delivery in JIT Supply Chain should be based upon the following factors:

     

    JIT Supply Chain- Quantitative & Qualitative Supplier Selection Factors

    1.      Delivery of a Quality Product

    2.     Delivery On-Time.

    3.     Frequent Deliveries.

    4.     Delivery in Small Quantities.

    5.     Delivery of Exact Quantities.

    6.     Supplier’s Management Policy and Philosophy

    7.     A Willingness and Openness to Share Data and Information

    8.     Attitude towards Partnership

    9.     Willingness to Undertake Continuous Improvement

    10.   Desire to Develop New Products

    11.   Ease of Communication at All Levels

     

    Hall (1983) suggested capacity and willingness to improve as additional criteria to the above list.

    Carr and Truesdale (1992) stated that Nissan’s supplier selection team visits supplier factories frequently. They evaluate delivery reliability similar to those above. They evaluate products from design and development through to the manufacturing processes.

     

    The Nissan team also looked at planning, operation, tidiness, appearance of workshop, working situation and professionalism. For professionalism they looked at engineering management attitude, the number of engineers employed, how they are structured, their technical capability and their influence within the organisation. Supplier’s location and market size is of less importance to Nissan.

     

    Aleo (1992) described the supplier selection procedures of Kodak. A selection team is formed by Kodak consisting of multi-discipline specialists. They developed a suitable decision matrix for the particular product under the evaluation. The suppliers are ranked numerically according to their ability to meet Kodak’s programmed needs.

    The selection process started with a review of current documentation pertaining to their suppliers. A comparison of supplier capabilities is then recorded in the decision matrix. The team review all historical data, quality, delivery and inspection procedures. Kodak maintained an open communication with its suppliers in the area of quality improvement and advised suppliers who failed to achieve the expected quality standards. A follow-up inspection is undertaken to ensure that the agreed changes have been carried out.

     

    Southey (1993) described the current practices of supplier appraisal as more encompassing than before. The appraisal can be divided into two areas namely quantitative and qualitative. Quantitative includes location, financial position, facilities and capacities, technical capability and standards of quality, whereas Qualitative consists of items 6-11 in list above.

     

    Southey (1993) also suggested other general evaluation criteria when there are numerous suppliers, for example, comparison with the level and quality of similar suppliers, supplier’s relationship with competitors, supplier’s track record and potential for future improvements to sustain JIT Supply Chain.

     

    In JIT Supply Chain, ‘Lean supply’ requires additional supplier selection criteria. Particularly in the sense of sourcing parts close to the points of manufacture so as to keep logistic cost to a minimum. The supplier must be ready to provide a service ‘locally’ wherever the manufacturer requires it in the world. As lean production develops globally, manufacturers tend to find local suppliers prepared to compete to improve leanness.

     

    Summary:

    There has been huge amount of research done to identify suitable supplier selection criteria. The above mentioned 11 quantitative and qualitative factors are just one aspect which has been identified with keeping JIT Supply Chain only in mind.

  • 14 Aug 2017 11:06 AM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    Original Post on APICS.org

     

    Apparel supply chains used to be known for producing high-fashion designs with slow response times. Designers and retailers forecast demand a year in advance and tailored their releases by season. As consumer trends have swung toward demanding low prices and fast response times, the apparel industry has shifted dramatically. Today, many businesses are trying to satisfy consumers who expect the products they want to be available right now. And for the most part, companies are succeeding in this endeavor.

    This newest phase of the apparel supply chain life cycle is called fast fashion, which recognizes attempts to provide the latest styles quickly and at low prices. Because prices are so low, consumers are less concerned about how long the product will last. Instead, they are willing to make impulse buys and continuously purchase new items to keep up with the latest trends. Companies therefore are shortening the length of the fashion cycle and integrating sustainable innovation into the core product design and manufacturing process (Amed et al. 2016). The companies most cited as being in the forefront of fast fashion are Inditex, parent of Zara; H&M; Forever 21; and Primark. A study by Bloomberg Businessweek reports that Zara grew sales by 240 percent and H&M sales jumped 180 percent between 2004 and 2015 (Baker 2016). By comparison, Gap, which has a more traditional fashion supply chain, experienced level sales during the same period.

    It’s interesting to think about early apparel supply chains and how far this industry has come. Hundreds of years ago, materials were sourced from local shepherds, designs were simple, and clothing was created for function instead of fashion and often handed down from generation to generation. Improving economic conditions helped that industry grow from a local to a regional one, encompassing consumers in neighboring communities or within the same country. Materials started being sourced from larger ranchers, and designers focused on high-fashion dresses that were modeled in exclusive fashion shows and sold as unique pieces to the rich and famous. To make the designs available to the public, regional manufacturers created imitation items. This also lured consumers into retail establishments, creating a more formalized business process. Still, most participants in this supply chain were within the same region, so response time was not a critical issue.

    Designers soon found that there was a huge market in clothing and began to develop their own brands. Styles were scheduled to fit the seasons, so designers and retailers had to plan a year in advance. The apparel usually was sold through department stores, although a few designers established their own retail outlets. However, as more brands flooded the market, apparel companies learned that they needed to keep their prices low in order to stay competitive. As a result, supply chains expanded as companies outsourced to countries with lower labor costs, especially China.

    In addition to competing on price, retailers found that response time became a competitive advantage. Those trying to operate on the four-season schedule had difficulty forecasting types and amounts of individual styles, sizes, colors and brands. Consequently, these businesses usually ended up with excess inventory that had to be sold at even lower prices or eventually scrapped. This gave rise to the fast-fashion model, which focuses on more-frequent releases of low-cost apparel throughout the year that deliver on consumer product interests. However, this shift stretched supply chains even further as apparel companies worked to keep up with the new requirements of quickly changing styles, continued lower costs and faster deliveries while juggling emerging environmental and working-conditions concerns. Zara, for instance, hires local and regional suppliers to fulfill time-sensitive orders and uses remote, low-cost suppliers for its evergreen products (Kowsmann 2016).

     

    Fast fashion also has integrated the roles of design and manufacturing. Designers have to not only create the items but also consider how they can be manufactured and how these processes will affect the supply chain (Khan, Christopher and Creazza 2012). Again, Zara is the generally acknowledged leader in responding to design changes. Its designers work with the company’s production and logistics teams to review daily data feeds from retail stores. This feedback, along with comments from customers, store managers and country directors, help the design team decide what products to make (Baker 2016).

     

    Supply chain implications

    What does all of this mean for supply chain managers? First, there is increased pressure to establish and maintain supply chains that can deliver quality, low-cost goods quickly and efficiently. At the same time, they must be agile enough to change as market conditions change. Successful supply chains must be tightly integrated in order to be transparent to all participants, from the various tiers of suppliers to consumers. This level of integration demands a level of collaboration not found in many of today’s supply chains. It requires

    • systems and processes linked together to enable complete and rapid flow of information
    • policies and procedures that are clearly issued, understood and followed
    • consistent and fair transactions
    • technology that is appropriately matched to the functions being performed
    • a clearly recognized leader — whether a retailer, a manufacturer, a third-party logistics professional or even a broker who coordinates all of the steps in the supply chain
    • the ability to ensure the flow of goods while maintaining the smooth transitions among supply chain members. 

    In addition, the use of low-cost labor and the short life cycles of products have created corporate social responsibility challenges for supply chain professionals. As buyers discover the working conditions in some supplier organizations, this increases awareness about employee pay and safety. Concerned consumers expect companies to source from suppliers that support workers’ rights while offering low-cost products.

    Similarly, supply chain managers must consider the end of their products’ life cycles. The flood of clothes being sold is overwhelming the reverse supply chain. About 10.5 million tons of clothes end up in American landfills each year because resale shops can only handle about 20 percent of the clothes being discarded (Bain 2015). This creates environmental waste that eventually will have to be addressed.

    Fast fashion still is an emerging model in the apparel industry, but it quickly is becoming a concern for department stores and other large retailers, which are rapidly losing apparel consumers to these fast-fashion leaders. To be most effective in the future, apparel companies must consider both the market demand and the supply chain. This will enable the industry to keep up with consumer style preferences, appropriate response times and price points, and social and environmental implications created by an evolving market.  

  • 07 Aug 2017 8:25 AM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    By: Lars Schmidt 

     

    You’re looking for a job—which means you’re networking your pants off. Wisely, you’re focusing on contacting recruiters and human-resources folks in particular, and you’re (just as wisely) taking a two-pronged approach: paging through LinkedIn for all it’s worth, and piecing together the email addresses of the contacts you identify, whenever you’re unable to send them an InMail message.

     

    You realize it’s a bit of a crapshoot, since a lot of the time, this means reaching out to people you don’t know, so it’s all the more crucial that you nail your introductory message. But how do you do that? Recruiters and HR professionals receive loads of unsolicited notes from jobseekers, and yours needs to stand out.

     

    So Fast Company asked five recruiters which types of messages—via email and LinkedIn alike—make them reach for “delete”, and which ones they actually respond to. Here’s what they said.

     

    What They Ignore

    Questions that five minutes of research can answer. “Are you hiring?” “What jobs should I apply to?” “What’s the best way to apply?” These are all straightforward questions that take mere minutes to answer just by checking out a company’s careers page. If you pose an easy question to a recruiter, it sends the message that you may not be willing to put in the effort needed to perform at their company.

     

    Anything too generic. Don’t fire off an obvious mass email—to a recruiter or anyone. While recruiters may rely on template emails themselves, that’s all the more reason why they’ll spot yours in a second. Sure, you might cry hypocrisy here, but the fact is that if you’re shotgunning canned messages and hoping for a response, don’t expect to get one.

     

    Instead, do a bit of homework on the recruiter you’re contacting. Do you have any shared connections, alumni, or interests? “Personalized, tailored outreach with a warm intro is easier than ever with data at our fingertips,” LinkedIn’s VP for global talent acquisition Brendan Browne points out. That means there’s no excuse for errors. “I received a few recent ones saying, ‘Your experience at Google is impressive’—I never worked at Google.”

     

    Show recruiters you take networking seriously enough to deserve their attention. Also, be sure to check the recruiter’s profile to see if they list the types of roles they recruit for (sales, tech, etc.) so you can target recruiters who actually work in your field.

     

    Anything that makes them look up basic info on you. Just as you need to take the initiative to do your homework on them, don’t make recruiters hunt down easy-to-find data on you. When you reach out, always cover the basics: Say who you are, where you work, and what you’re looking to do next.

     

    Anything too long. Don’t write an essay: Be brief and get to the point. “The great messages that get my attention are short, sweet, convey genuine interest, and clearly connect their background to our hiring needs,” says Duo Security senior recruiter Jasmine Burns. Pro tip: Adding hyperlinks lets you add more content and context without adding length.

     

    Blanket requests for job-search help. Not all recruiters are the same. Agency and executive recruiters represent candidates and help connect them with employers; corporate recruiters focus mainly on hiring for their own organizations. That distinction matters. “I’m a corporate recruiter, not a headhunter,” says Pete Radloff, principal technical recruiter at the media analytics company comScore. “While I’d love to help everyone find a job, asking me to generically ‘help with your job search’ isn’t realistic.”

     

    What They Respond To

    A clear objective, request, or call to action. Don’t be vague about why you’re connecting. On LinkedIn, it isn’t rude to send a connection request and then immediately follow up with an ask or a pitch as soon as it’s accepted. Same goes for email: Include a call to action in your very first message. Most recruiters are turned off by vague messages that dance around the point they know you want to make. Be clear about why you’re getting in touch and what you hope to gain.

     

    Modesty. Check your ego. If you include awards or accolades on your LinkedIn profile, trust that recruiters will see them. Lead instead with your work and what you offer, otherwise it’ll sound like an oversell. As Lyst’s head of talent Matt Buckland puts it, “It’s important to maintain a calm certainty of your own skills and how they’ll benefit the company.” There’s a balance here, he explains: “Too modest and you risk sounding needy or desperate, too far in the other direction and you may sound arrogant.” So stick to the facts. “Tell us what you did, how you did it, and what you learned. Your skills will become obvious, and you’ll sound measured and confident.”

     

    Messages that are personal, accurate, and specific. Be specific about the type of job you’re interested in (even if you haven’t spotted an opening for that precise role), and why you feel your background and experience would benefit the company. “I prefer [candidates being] very specific on parameters, such as why they’re interested in my company’s stage, location, and scope of job,” says Anna Ott, an HR expert at the incubator hub:raum.

    Mentioning outright that you’re excited to work in an organization that’s in the middle of a “restructuring phase” or “growth/scaling,” Ott explains, combined with your “functional skills and/or industry expertise, helps me gauge alignment.” Recruiters get a lot of outreach emails, so the sooner you can get to your value proposition, the more likely your message is to be read.

     

    A measure of polish. Your initial outreach is all a recruiter may have to make an initial assessment of you. That means typos, punctuation, and grammar matter. This shouldn’t really need saying, but recruiters say they encounter basic writing errors all the time. So take a moment to perfect your message. Proofread it twice—or even ask a friend for help—because you probably only have one shot. 

  • 03 Aug 2017 10:11 AM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    Original Post

     

    It’s our perpetual hobby horse here at Argentus that Supply Chain needs to be doing more as a field to attract young people. And the industry has started to pick up the slack. Whether it’s organizations partnering with universities to provide information and educational opportunities, or industry associations holding informative events aimed at the wider public, many Supply Chain leaders are using creative strategies to develop the next generation of talent in the field.

     

    But is there something about Supply Chain’s image that’s holding it back from being seen as the crucial, strategic function with tremendous career potential it is today?

     

    This is an issue that popped up in our discussion of why there aren’t more Women in Supply Chain Leadership roles: it’s the question of Supply Chain’s popular image and whether it’s preventing women and others from viewing it as a lucrative and vibrant career option.

    On company websites, magazines, promotional videos, and industry association pages, the Supply Chain industry has always employed imagery of the nuts-and-bolts of how products get to market. We’re all used to images of hard hats, warehouses, trucks, trains, shipping containers, boxes, and palettes as a sort of visual shorthand for Supply Chain as a function. We use plenty of these images here at Argentus in our blog posts, service pages, etc.

     

    We get it: there needs to be some kind of imagery to associate with an industry or function. But it’s worth considering: does imagery of trucks and boxes adequately convey the strategic edge that Supply Chain offers to companies? Does it offer a realistic vision of what Supply Chain Directors, Planners, Strategic Sourcing professionals and others do every day to uncover efficiencies and integrate global processes across a business?

     

    Or does it send a message to young people that a career in Supply Chain is, let’s face it, boring?

     

    We all know that’s not the case. We recruit for jobs in Supply Chain every day, and we hear this from candidates all the time: A progressive career in Supply Chain is fast-paced, with tons of variety. It’s very closely tied to both technology and globalization, so it’s rapidly evolving. And it’s rewarding, both intellectually and financially. But many people outside the field have a persistent perception that is rooted in Supply Chain’s origins: that it’s a blue-collar, transactional function. And the imagery that we often employ hasn’t caught up with how the field has evolved.

     

    Let it be said: we fully support and admire all the front-line individuals who make Supply Chains run effectively. Distribution centre staff, drivers, and transactional buyers are all crucial components of Supply Chain success. But it can’t be denied that images of trucks and warehouses end up reinforcing an image of Supply Chain as a purely “blue collar” function. Beyond that, they often don’t show the people themselves who really provide the value. Maybe part of the difficulty is that Supply Chain offers value as a connector. It connects suppliers with businesses, manufacturers with distributors with customers. And it’s harder to depict the connections between things than it is to depict the things themselves.

     

    We’ve written before about how Supply Chain isn’t the flashiest business function, and it rarely gets recognition in the news. In fact, many in the wider public aren’t even familiar with what Supply Chain is. But at all levels of business all the way up to the C-suite, more and more people are noticing that Supply Chain offers a strategic edge that allows companies to succeed in a global context. It brings business functions together, streamlines operations, and ensures positive customer experiences.

     

    Isn’t it time that Supply Chain’s image caught up to the times? 

  • 11 Jul 2017 8:00 AM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    By MGravier · on SCMR.com

     

    Companies depend more than ever on collaboration with suppliers and customers, yet they’re terrible at it. According to a recent study from 3M, 70-percent of suppliers claim that half their customers do not have systems in place for collaboration – this leads to inefficiencies.

     

    Only 43-percent of suppliers feel fully empowered to collaborate, and half have held back on strategic innovations because the customer does nothing to encourage or facilitate improvements. The result is unresponsive supply chains, particularly in the current economic environment characterized by volatility with unpredictable peaks and troughs of demand. Staying profitable requires finding new efficiencies.

    The biggest opportunity is operational: companies need operational processes that translate collaboration into bottom line supply chain performance. Here are some operating techniques you can implement to try to manage to manage collaboration to ride the wave of demand uncertainty.

     

    On-site assembly and inventory – Keeping a small store of finished or semi-finished product on-site is a powerful method that requires active collaboration to create flexibility and adaptability to customer demands. A widespread approach in healthcare and trade crafts, the method does require some skilled workforce and a degree of modularity.

     

    Centralized planning/information, decentralized execution – Long a staple of military doctrine, this approach is a hallmark of Seven Eleven where store managers use local knowledge to make ordering decisions in the uncertain convenience store environment. The centralized information and analytics tools help store managers at the same time it more tightly integrates the supply chain.

     

    Replace inventory with rapid replenishment – A staple case study in supply chain classes, the use of expedited transportation to reduce both pipeline and on-site inventories has yet to achieve its full potential as indicated by Amazon’s rapid expansion. Customers are willing to wait for a variety of products, particularly if the wait is only a day or two.

     

    Refer customers to competitors – Not a first line of defense, but customers that see that you help take care of their needs are more motivated to return. After all, if you don’t have it but know where to find it, you preserve your role as the go-to supplier. And too many companies are oblivious about when customers order from someone else—you want to know when and why this happens.

    Collaboration is a necessity in today’s supply chain and companies need to better embrace it in order to be successful. Managing your demand uncertainties may be as simple as asking your paid experts to offer their expertise.

     

  • 06 Jul 2017 12:32 PM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    Original post on LI by Nainsi Jain

     

    I came across this question when I was preparing for the behavioral questions for an interview. While thinking about the answer, I actually discovered my personality trait. I am passionate about Improvements. During my career of almost 9 years, I always strived for continuous process improvements, even after making an improvement I start identifying another loophole into the system to make the system more efficient. My team members used to call me 'Ms. Perfectionist', who is never satisfied with the present system.

     

    I never knew I was following lean concepts of eliminating Mudas, Kanban, 5S etc. while making those improvements. These fancy words were taught to me at ASU and I actually start relating my past experiences while learning the concepts. So, in a way it was a reverse education for me wherein I applied concepts earlier while working and learned the terminologies later.

     

    Yes, the question helps me discover my hidden passion. A passion which I follow even when I am at home. A passion which is an integral part of my thinking. A passion which defines me completely. A passion which explains my curiosity of learning new skills, attention to details, taking initiatives and ownership, the foresight for eventuality.

     

    Find out your hidden passion!!! 

  • 22 Jun 2017 11:40 AM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    By: Christon Valdivieso, CSCP, SSBBP and Afton Knight, CSCP, SSBBP

     

    The Beyond the Horizon (BH) supply chain research project, a joint venture between APICS and Michigan State University, recently released a report which investigates the focus and “current business practices” of supply chain executives. One key questions they asked supply chain executives was, “What keeps you awake at night?” Not surprisingly, one of the top six answers was capacity and resource availability.  

    Over the past decade most American industries have experienced some level of contraction followed by consolidation. Now, after several years of soft, yet steady, growth, companies are starting to outperform their operations.  

     

    Read full article 

  • 25 May 2017 11:16 AM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    By: Christon Valdivieso, CSCP, SSBBP and Afton Knight, CSCP, SSBBP

     

    Making strategic business decisions can be stressful and difficult in the best of situations. Having good data and insight provide objective support and fact-based grounds for those decisions. I was able to work on a project recently with a California-based beverage company that was looking to develop an advanced planning and scheduling (APS) system. Manufacturers have historically relied on experienced production managers for their planning and scheduling needs but, as complexities increase within manufacturing processes and the supply chain as a whole, companies, including the beverage company we worked with, are moving toward automating their production planning and scheduling functions. After reviewing the benchmark data, we supply this thought: How advanced is your APS system?

     

    The APICS dictionary defines an APS system as "any computer program that uses advanced mathematical algorithms or logic to perform optimization, and/or simulation on finite capacity scheduling, sourcing, capital planning, resource planning, forecasting, demand planning.” Our initial step in the project was to benchmark industry standards by spending time with planning teams from various operations. Through this process we developed three key factors needed for a successful APS system implementation: 1) Communication, 2) Visibility, and 3) Integration.

     

    Read Full Article 

  • 10 May 2017 2:11 PM | Christon Valdivieso (Administrator)

    By: Christon Valdivieso, CSCP, SSBBP and Afton Knight, CSCP, SSBBP 

     

    Recently a friend and I were discussing the value of blockchain technology to businesses. He pointed out that blockchain has the potential to increase visibility and decrease processing time allowing businesses to operate faster and with greater integration. My point is that businesses are not ready for it and thus it’s a pointless technology.               

     

    While blockchain is a great technology that can increase speed and visibility, companies are already way too much “block” with no desire for the “chain”. Working with different companies I have found that most companies do not share data cross-functionally well, making the idea of sharing information across companies laughable. 

     

    Read Full Store Here 

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