Daily Archives: November 15, 2012

The Effect of Commodity Price Increases on CPG Manufacturers

Spend Matters welcomes a guest post from Bryan Cochie and Len Prokopets (see full bios at the end of this piece) of The Hackett Group. In recent years, CPG manufacturers have experienced squeezed profit margins as a result of a tough market environment. On one side, the global recession has created a great deal of demand volatility for CPG products. Developed markets like North America and Western Europe have shown little to no growth. Emerging markets like China, India and Brazil, which were expected to backfill the slow growth of the developed economies, have themselves experienced slow growth rates. On […]

Dodd-Frank Conflict Minerals Law: Headaches for Metal Supply Chains

As the old adage goes, “the devil lies in the details” – and that aptly describes the challenge many diversified US manufacturers find in meeting the new conflict-free minerals compliance requirements under the Dodd-Frank legislation. What seems straightforward enough – avoiding the 3Ts (tin, tungsten and tantalum) – actually becomes more challenging when one considers the wide array of semi-finished materials companies purchase.

Afternoon Coffee: Walmart Bribery Probe Expands, Offshoring (to robots), The Cost of Flying Fat

"A Wal-Mart spokesman declined to comment." Wal-Mart Bribery Probe Expands Past Mexico To Brazil, China and India -- An internal probe of Wal-Mart's actions in developing markets has extended beyond the company's Mexican subsidiary to Brazil, China and India. The expansion comes only a year after Wal-Mart revealed Justice Department and SEC investigations of whether it bribed officials to spur the growth of its Mexican subsidiary. Forget American labor... Robots in demand in China as labour costs climb -- In China, there's no better time to be a robot. Pictures from last week's International Industry Fair in Shanghai show them […]

Advanced Supplier Management: Vendor Registration Beyond the Basics

This post is based on material contained in the following Spend Matters Compass Series brief: Beyond One-Off Initiatives and a Virtual Vendor Master – Advanced Use Cases for Supplier Management. The primary challenge with open registration lies in defining registration stages. For example: what is mandatory to provide in each stage, who is allowed to approve data changes, how to handle exceptions, which other internal and external data sources to incorporate, and so on. The following are additional elements for consideration for companies moving to embrace advanced supplier management in the area of open registration: Categorizing and classifying capabilities, including […]

Procurement Today and Tomorrow: Becoming a Fire Starter (Five Pyro Initiatives)

Click for the first installment in this series: Procurement: From Finance's Poodle to Attack Dog. When it comes to starting fires versus fighting them, procurement has a great opportunity to take out not a teeny book of matches, but a flame-thrower aimed squarely at the apathetic naysayers in the business. During my talk at the Zycus Horizon conference, I shared the following five opportunities that procurement can take to start some serious fires. In subsequent posts in this series, I'll flesh out each of these initiatives in more detail including sharing a basic "how-to" guide for each program. Tackling services […]

Monitor Group and Libya: The Consultant Interview and Perspective (Part 1)

It's been a fascinating few days of coverage and analysis regarding Monitor Group's bankruptcy and Deloitte subsequently coming in and announcing they were purchasing the assets (i.e., consultants and brands, including Doblin and GBN, of the organization). We've covered the news extensively on our public site (here, here, and here) as well as on our subscription site, Spend Matters PRO, from an instructive supply risk and services procurement vantage point: Monitor Group Goes Bankrupt: Why Services Procurement and Risk Management Best Practices Matter. Like former Cambridge consultant Arthur D. Little, which had also gone bankrupt, Monitor no doubt overstretched itself […]