Category Archives: Supply Chain Visibility

GSA Issues RFI For Solution to Tackle Counterfeit IT Products in Federal Supply Chain

Supply Chain Fraud

The U.S. General Services Administration announced early last week it looking for a supply chain solution as part of a pilot program aimed at helping federal procurement professionals authenticate IT and communication products in the government’s supply chain. The independent organization that supports federal agencies issued an RFI May 9 to gather information about the development of a supply chain solution and interface that would prevent counterfeit IT components from entering the federal supply chain.

Black Swan Events: A Double-Edged Sword for Supply Chain Resiliency Proponents

In 2011, the unthinkable occurred in Japan. A massive earthquake triggered a tsunami, which in turn triggered a nuclear power plant meltdown, all of which combined to create a humanitarian disaster of epic scale. It is during times like these that many companies rethink their supply chain vulnerabilities and threat matrices. The result is an upswing in interest in supply risk management and resiliency strategies and initiatives and associated technology solutions.

Infographic: Accomplishing Supply Chain Visibility Through MRO-as-a-Service

A few weeks ago, we published a four-part series focused on how maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) is a significant — yet often overlooked — business function in the supply chain. Authored by Michael Lamoureux, research analyst, and Pierre Mitchell, chief research officer, the series explores how this ignored category is abundant with possibilities for cost savings and overall supply chain improvements, especially when using a managed service provider model that works in the product supply chain in your approach.

FM Global’s Index Identifies Most Resilient Countries Around the World

FM Global Resilience Index

Oil prices, exposure to natural disasters and political turmoil, including terrorism threats, were the major factors impacting a country’s business resiliency in 2015, according to the recently released FM Global Resilience Index. The index ranks 130 countries on their ability to respond to supply chain disruptions, a tool FM Global, a commercial property insurance provider, intends for companies to use to manage risk and make business decisions.

5 Critical Supply Risk Mitigation Principles for Your Sourcing Process

supply risk

Supply chain risk management (SCRM) is becoming a top priority in procurement, as organizations lose millions because of cost volatility, supply disruption, non-compliance fines and incidents that cause damage to the organizational brand and reputation. Bribes to shady government officials, salmonella in the spinach and forced labor in the supply chain can all result in brand-damaging headlines that can cost an organization tens of millions in sales and hundred of millions in brand damage. And while reputation may only be important for name brands, cost volatility and supply disruption affect all manufacturers.

Is Your Favorite Fashion Brand Transparent with its Supply Chain Sustainability?


Levi Strauss & Co, H&M and Inditex, which owns the popular brand Zara, rank the highest among fashion brands when it comes to supply chain transparency, according to a new report published by the Ethical Consumer in partnership with Fashion Revolution. The Fashion Transparency Index scored fashion companies according to how well they publicly communicate their supply chain sustainability initiatives.

Consumer Goods Companies Lack Supply Chain Visibility, Unable to Assess Environmental, Social Impacts of Products

supply chain visibility

The majority of consumer goods manufacturers lack visibility into their supply chains and are unable to truly track sustainability practices or identify problem areas such as possible deforestation and forced labor, a new report from The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) shows. The group’s 2016 Impact Report stated that of the 1,700 companies surveyed, only 19% indicated they had full supply chain transparency. Twenty-seven percent said they had partial visibility into their supply chain and 54% had no supply chain visibility.

Supply Chain Risk Management Lessons From the Japan Earthquakes

Japan earthquakes

The earthquakes and aftershocks that have hit Japan in recent weeks have caused significant supply chain disruptions. While companies cannot completely predict natural disasters, they can and must position themselves to be able to respond when one occurs, risk management experts say. A key part of setting up a strong risk management program is having access to information that provides a high level of visibility over what is happening in your supply chain.

What the New Trade Enforcement Act Lacks: An Interview with Pierre-Francois Thaler of EcoVadis

forced labor

The new Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act makes it illegal for the U.S. to accept imported goods made through forced labor. The U.S. government has a list of more than 400 goods produced using child or slave labor that can serve as a guide for companies assessing their supply chains. However, according to Pierre-Francois Thaler, co-founder and co-CEO of supplier rating technology provider EcoVadis, companies looking to truly tackle slave labor in their supply chains and establish long-term sustainability initiatives need to dig deeper and do their due diligence beyond checking the government’s list.

The Need for Food Retailers To Work With Suppliers & Improve Product Transparency

hidden workers

Consumers today are demanding more information than ever before on the food they buy and eat. It’s not a new phenomenon, but it’s an important point for food companies and retailers to take note of, especially as they compete for customers’ dollars and loyalty. A new report, however, has shown nearly two-thirds of consumers don’t think food companies are transparent enough — they want more food production information than they are finding at the grocery store.

Customs Bill Compliance Requires Greater Visibility into Multitier Supply Chains

customs bill

The Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 was signed into law in February and prohibits the United States from accepting imported goods made through forced labor. A previous loophole allowed goods produced through slave labor to enter the country if demand for the product outweighed current supply. The new law also known as the customs bill calls on companies to gain a higher level of visibility into their multitier and global supply chains.

Supply Chain Mapping is the First Step to New Trade Act Compliance

Global Risk Management Solutions (GRMS)

With the recent passage of the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015, which bans the U.S. from accepting imports produced by slave or child workers, companies will have to start digging further down in their supply chain to investigate whether this forced labor exists. According to Mickey North Rizza, vice president of strategic services at BravoSolution, companies need to start preparing now for enforcement of this new trade act, and that begins with mapping your supply chain to identify areas of risk.