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Company Supply Chain - Weakest Link?

The Supply Chain is a competitive differentiator for organizations and managers. Chief executive officers (CEOs) who neglect it put their organizations in jeopardy.

Identification of key areas where supply chain managers can influence their supply chains is critical in assessing the influence they currently exert. Outsourcing of core business functions like distribution or manufacturing could lead to serious problems for a company. Good Supply Chain Management (SCM) begins with finding the right people to lead a company's supply chain operation, right from the most senior on down the ranks. Managers must participate in recruiting a top-notch supply chain team that will use customer-focused metrics and best-practice benchmarking to bring about cross-functional alignment and achieve efficiencies, which the top management should personally review.

Two serious threats to the supply chain are product complexity and obsolete inventory. It is important to eliminate such cross-functional disconnects. A long term approach should also include business planning, promotional programs, and customer-contract negotiations, with inherent supply chain ramifications.

Keyword: Supply chain optimization; Supply chains; Supply Chain Management, Outsourcing, Lead time

Case Study Quotes

"Pretty much, Apple and Dell are the only ones in this industry making money. They make it by being Wal-Mart. We make it by innovation". - Steve Jobs, Apple