Daily Archives: December 18, 2009

Do You Have Your Biggest Supply Chain Risk Covered?

If you said “yes“, think again! I know for a fact that the odds of you having your biggest supply chain risk covered are so statistically insignificant that they are effectively zero. Why? Because I cover supply chain technology, and it’s current reach. And despite the best efforts of myself, and a few other individuals who have been pounding away at the keys for years, most of the technology that you really need hasn’t yet permeated your four walls (or your ceiling or your floor for that matter).

You see, your biggest risk is not market shifts, natural disasters, or political turmoil — it’s your platform. The platform that your people rely on day-in and day-out to do their jobs … and if it doesn’t give you the visibility you need, you’ll never know which risks you have, which risks you have mitigated, or which risk just appeared that is about to wipe-out a third of your operations if you don’t act fast and mitigate it.

So check out my two-part series that ran last week on @Risk and 2Sustain, because when I say don’t ignore your platform risk because sustainability is an internal concern as well, I mean it!

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The Role of Optimization in Strategic Sourcing – The Future of Optimization

This series discusses the recent report from CAPS Research on the role of optimization in strategic sourcing. The primary goal is to highlight, clarify, and, in some cases, correct parts of the report that are important, confusing, or incorrect to insure that you have the best introduction to strategic sourcing decision optimization that one can have.

What will the future hold? The authors predict development in the following two directions:

  1. more self-serve applications that require no third-party involvement
  2. more powerful services that handle even larger, more complex problems

In other words, the same-old same-old for the foreseeable future. I’m sad to say I have to agree. Until strategic sourcing decision optimization catches on, most of the current providers are not going to make significant investments exploring new vistas for a solution that the majority of their customers aren’t even coming close to stressing out today. You see, current applications are just “scratching the surface” of potential uses. Optimization is very powerful and could ultimately be used to optimize the entire supply chain.

However, the applications will continue to get more user-friendly and easier on the self-service front as providers get exposed to even wider ranges of models and uses and refine their interfaces to support even more possibilities (while simplifying the definition of the average model). So this is something to look forward to.

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