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APICS CEO Abe Eshkenazi, CSCP, CPA, CAE, offers his viewpoint on supply chain and the latest APICS news.
Letters to the readers of APICS magazine from Senior Managing Editor Elizabeth Rennie and other members of the editorial staff
The official APICS blog features insights, analyses and ideas from experts and APICS leaders to help advance supply chains.
Each week, APICS CEO Abe Eshkenazi, CSCP, CPA, CAE, offers insights into global news and shares his exclusive commentary connecting current events with supply chain topics.
Subscribe to this weekly e-newsletter.
APICS research cuts through the clutter and brings you critical ideas and innovations in supply chain management, best practices, how-to steps, and practical advice that give you and your organization a competitive advantage.
“Supply Chain Management: Beyond the Horizon” is an industry-focused initiative with research and educational components. The research was conducted by Michigan State University in conjunction with APICS.
Transportation Journal is an APICS academic journal devoted to presenting new knowledge about the supply chain, logistics and transportation fields.
APICS, through a partnership with The Manufacturing Institute, explores how manufacturing and supply chain can attract, retain and advance women.
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Through billions of years of evolution, nature figured out elegant designs for its organisms and natural materials. Therefore, when humans need to solve a problem, it makes sense to look to Mother Nature.
As managers, we must maintain awareness of our personal motivation schemes and take care to not assume we understand the motivations of others. We often refer to change-management models to guide actions for our teams, but these can provide an incomplete understanding of the work required, as we often neglect the importance of individual motivation management. ......Read More
The health care landscape is rapidly evolving, and more pressure is placed on hospitals and health systems to reduce costs, improve outcomes and increase patient satisfaction. The following real-world account demonstrates the benefits that can be realized when partners work together.......Read More
Third-party logistics (3PL) business ABC is based in China and works with a leading automotive manufacturer that has hundreds of service dealers. In the past, the client company would place service parts purchase orders (POs) directly from the parts manufacturers to be delivered to its dealers’ service departments. Unfortunately, delivery was sporadic, and customers often had to wait days for their repairs to be completed. Even though the dealers typically kept about one month’s worth of spare parts inventory, this still proved to be inadequate. ......Read More
Third-party logistics (3PL) companies play a key role in heightening global supply chain efficiency. Yet many of them tend to provide a narrow range of offerings — generally just transportation and warehousing — which constrains supply chain opportunities and leaves these businesses with pricing as their only competitive weapon. Meanwhile, purchasers at many organizations face tremendous pressure to control costs, most often due to a lack of purchasing power and insufficient volume. These professionals are seeking innovative ways to manage procurement more effectively.......Read More
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is a forum where the governments of 34 democracies with market economies work together, as well as with more than 70 nonmember economies, in order to promote economic growth, prosperity and sustainable development. The member countries account for 63 percent of world GDP, three-quarters of all trade and 18 percent of global population.......Read More
Transparency in global supply chains is vital. Without it, it’s impossible to anticipate and manage supplier risk, minimize supply chain disruptions, prevent litigation, and protect your brand. Unfortunately, for years now, global supply chains have been a bit of a murky business. As the impact of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ripples across the globe — alongside increasing antibribery and corruption regulation and enforcement in many Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries — the pressure for supply chains to be transparent continues to mount.......Read More
Telecom and technology giant AT&T has been around for 141 years. Although the company operates in more than 200 countries and acquires an average of five patents a day, its leaders know continued success depends on sustainability. And from there, it’s a short leap to supply chain, which they recognize is central to any sustainability initiative.......Read More
Cities are getting smart, partly because of the rise of cloud computing and the internet of things (IOT). City administrators are starting to use IOT data to run their operations and help improve residents’ environments and lives. AT&T is doing more than taking note of this trend; it’s working with city officials in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami and other cities through its Smart Cities solutions.......Read More
Competition is the soul of capitalism. Without competition, growth and improvement are impossible. Those organizations that are successful in the long run know how to compete in their markets. Innovation, team spirit and perseverance are direct results of that expertise.......Read More
Spanish clothing and accessories retailer Zara has been mentioned in this department frequently in the past few years. The company is famous for being able to receive an idea from a retail store manager and, as little as two weeks later, have the new product available for purchase. This continuous flow of new designs — rather than characteristic seasonal releases — is transforming the fast-fashion industry.......Read More
I once had a long-term consulting assignment with a manufacturer of large-vehicle chassis. The chassis were sold to motor-home manufacturers that would add the bodies and interior accessories. Each chassis consisted of the frame, engine, axle, transmission, brakes, electricals and anything else necessary for safe and legal driving.......Read More
Many years ago, when I was an automotive industry plant materials manager, I faced a big challenge. My company’s enterprise resources planning (ERP) system was failing us miserably with regard to our expendable packaging. Although we had initially been very successful at implementing a fully integrated ERP system driven by forecasts, material requirements planning and bills of material, it was discovered that pallets, corrugated boxes, dunnage and other packaging items were essentially impossible to plan for.......Read More
Supply chain managers know that the integrated nature of 21st century supply chains requires the breaking down of operational silos to build a connected, effective entity. Different players within the supply chain must be aware of each other’s functions and activities and how these connect to their own roles. In this way, the entire supply chain can ensure that it is working toward a common goal and cooperating on the best way to reach it.......Read More
According to the World Health Organization, 2.4 billion people do not have access to clean sanitation, and 1.8 million children die every year because their immune systems are not strong enough to battle diseases — many of which could easily be prevented with soap. In fact, simple handwashing cuts morbidity rates by nearly 50 percent. Sicknesses related to contaminated water supplies and poor hygiene most often plague poor, war-torn regions or those in the wake of a natural disaster.......Read More
Better employee engagement and empowerment remain a mirage for many organizations. Most executives are committed intellectually to these goals; however, on a day-to-day basis, these professionals tend to push cultural niceties further down the list of immediate priorities. Plus, too often businesses ripple through cycles of engagement and empowerment that turn out to be unsustainable.......Read More
Recently, I was part of an APICS job task analysis committee for the Certified in Logistics, Transportation and Distribution designation. At one point, we developed an elevator speech to describe supply chain management. After a couple of revisions, it looked like this: “Every organization has a supply chain. The most effective and efficient ones are closed-loop systems for moving, storing and configuring products, starting with raw materials and ending with a satisfied customer. Whether information or physical goods, nothing happens until something moves.”......Read More
As a supply chain manager, wouldn’t you like to know everything about your products’ histories, including the origin of individual materials at the mine or farm, who fabricated or assembled each item, how and when the products were transported, who approved or certified their quality, and dozens of other bits of information? Of course you would. But most companies have too many products, and most supply chains are too complex, to track completely and with 100 percent certainty.......Read More
Historically, the relationship between a company and its sup- pliers sat somewhere along a continuum from a mutually beneficial strategic partnership to an adversarial dynamic in which buyers squeezed suppliers to achieve the lowest possible pricing. However, for the past 30 years or so, the best companies have been embracing an approach first modeled by Toyota Motor Corporation that takes a strategic view of supplier relationships and continuous improvement and leverages the competitive advantages that can only be achieved by working closely with suppliers. These businesses have discovered that engaging suppliers as collaborators—instead of adversaries—enables their supply chains to operate more effectively.......Read More
Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems (IDS) has 28 locations worldwide producing weapons, sensors, and integration tools that support mission-critical areas including air and missile defense; land- and sea-based radar; naval ship operating systems; command, control, communication, computer, surveillance, reconnaissance, and intelligence systems; and other advanced technologies. In addition, IDS offers air traffic management solutions, sonars, and torpedoes.......Read More
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