Throughout the course of a typical year, I usually speak -- either online or at events -- at least a few dozen times. And part of this continued dialogue and conversation often involves -- usually tangentially -- the concept of supply risk. In most cases, I've found that the majority of companies are woefully underprepared for the many forms of supply risk that could cause irreparable damage to their brands, stock prices, and customer relationships. But the first step to proactively tackling supply risk management is to learn more about it -- and to bite off smaller initiatives which target the most potentially damaging areas of the business (and which are quantifiable and hopefully, relatively straightforward to address). And I can't imagine a better way to learn that listening to a few expert talking heads bring the subject alive.
To this end, in a few weeks, I'll be participating in a webinar on the subject with a number of other experts in the area including supply management and risk guru/academic/reformed consultant (no offense, Accenture) Donovan Favre and Supply Chain Management Review's Frank Quinn. I've had the chance to talk to Donovan and Frank already, and as we've circulated our webinar material, I've got to say that collectively, it amounts to some of the most insightful information that I've seen in one place on supply risk in quite some time. Emptoris, who is hosting the webinar, has given us free reign to talk about a subject that we should all know more about.
In my part of the presentation, I'll be talking about how and why supply risk -- in the form of quality and supply disruptions, among other types of risk -- are making the headlines on an increasingly regular basis. At the same time, I will also pay homage to the rising interest in green and sustainable procurement and how as the spotlight in the two areas grows, green/sustainable supply risk issues -- which are not cut and dry -- increase as well. But talk is cheap without pragmatic advice. So I'll also provide a number of steps that companies can take to better mitigate and manage supply risk as well. As the real guru on the subject, Donovan Fabre will be elaborating and expanding on the concepts that I introduce (his knowledge and material is some of the best of I've seen on the subject). So join us for a webinar which is clearly shaping up to be much more than just a part of a vendor's marketing program. I can promise that the material, enthusiasm and passion for the subject will be first rate.
As an aside, if you're seeking out other sources of information on supply risk, some other experts in the industry you might want to chat with include Kevin McCormick and Robert Handfield. Both are academics and consultants who have had significant experience digging into the area. On the vendor side, Jim Lawton, who has been relatively quiet on the subject of late, also has some strong opinions and great cases about the benefits of investing in supply risk management. Or, if you're looking for highly specialized information on the topic, let me know. There are a few other folks I might be able to put you in touch with (and if you want contact details for everyone else and you can't find them on Google, drop me a line. I'd be happy to make a connection for you).
- Jason Busch