supply chain Content

The Hidden Procurement & Supply Chain Benefits of Chinese/US Cross-Border Swine Deals (Part 2)

As the NYT pointed out in a column highlighting some of the details (and regulatory scrutiny) surrounding the recently announced acquisition of Smithfield Foods by Shuanghui International, a partially state owned/influenced Chinese firm, closure of this deal in particular is not a given. But something we can take away from the proposed transaction regardless is not just Western capacity in the agricultural and food supply chain, but also the value of enhanced supply chain visibility and risk standards in driving deals and valuations in these areas.

Exploring A/P and Procurement Best Practices at P&G: Lesson 4

Lesson Four here is that project participants must understand improvement objectives and how to handle trade-offs. So let’s assume you’ve seized a nice prize, and per the WSJ article, let’s say the prize for P&G is $2B in cash. The prize could be taken as freed cash (or to a supplier, an increase in cash held captive!) But it could also be taken as a cost reduction in the form of an early discount. So, we have the classic cash vs. cost trade-off (we’ll ignore the service aspect of on-time payments that AP is measured on). So, which is more important? In this case, it’s cash.

FMC’s Total Cost of Ownership Equation: Safety, Quality, Delivery and Price

FMC Technologies’ four business drivers are: safety, quality, delivery and price. They use these to create a total cost of ownership model. With the deployment of a hybrid supplier performance management and spend analysis solution (Spend Radar – SciQuest), FMC Technologies’ initial challenge was centered on definitions (i.e., how to ensure that the same report would generate results that were equally robust and well-defined regardless of area of operations). If FMC Technologies could not achieve this, it would be impossible to benchmark across areas or have meaningful discussions with business owners and suppliers around why there were dips in performance in certain areas.

Trading “Apps” for Applications: May the Best Supply Chain Platform Win (Part 2)

So far, I’ve only been talking about this concept in a single-tier fashion. Now imagine the network or platform serving not just as the glue that allows companies to plug and play different best-of-breed applications but also as applications that sync across multiple tiers of a supply chain. Such a vision is not too radical. In fact, it is beginning to happen right now, and it will transform the basis by which we buy applications, as well as the value they create, based on the “data exhaust” that comes out of them.

Thought Innovation – Considerations for Supply Chain and Procurement in the Share Economy

Disruptive trends continue to shift the business landscape and challenge longstanding operations. Disruptions come in many forms (natural disasters, raw material availability, factory and line down situations), but innovative and disruptive trends are often overlooked, in particular the share economy. The impact of these trends on supply chain and procurement is not the first to come to mind, however it is an integral part of evolving models to thrive in the future for the share economy.

Exploring A/P and Procurement Best Practices at P&G: Lesson 3

The third lesson to remember is that the invisible hand needs to make invisible opportunity visible. Even when companies strive to simplify the value chain, there are still opportunities, albeit they tend to be hidden and difficult to find. P&G has employed many typical strategies for creating value in the P2P process, including an ERP backbone "wrapped" with appropriate best of breed solutions, a supplier portal strategy and others.

Alternative Spend Analysis Approaches: Performance Management at FMC Technologies

Unlike many organizations that use spend analysis as a tool to drive supplier rationalization, FMC Technologies is not looking to reduce its supply base. Rather, their focus on building visibility into spending and supplier performance centers on standardizing and deepening relationships with their strategic suppliers worldwide. Some of the data points they leverage in this hybrid spend and performance analysis include quality, on-time delivery, open purchase orders (POs), forecasts and supplier risk information.

Trading “Apps” for Applications: May the Best Supply Chain Platform Win (Part 1)

Even though we’re woefully under-qualified to write about apps and platforms compared to some truly geeky technologists we know, it’s important for general Spend Matters readers (on the procurement and supply sides) to understand the massive scale of how the application and network market is going to be transformed in the coming decade.

When Supplier Performance Management Met Spend Analysis

Good performance management approaches have to rest on good data – data that is indisputably referenced by business units, corporate leadership and suppliers alike. The spend analytics field has matured to the point where leading solutions can process complex data sets from a broad range of ERP solutions and provide consolidated dashboards and reports with drilldown to the lowest-detail levels within hours of designated close time. In contrast, SPM (supplier performance management) often involves manual work such as entering information in balanced scorecards, which obviously makes timely reports difficult.

New Research: Making Spend Analysis a Big Data Supply Chain Application

It used to be that spend analysis was focused on helping category managers, consultants and others tasked with identifying and implementing savings opportunities. Fast-forward ten years to today, and spend analysis has been put in a whole new context-- namely, as a tool to bridge the analytics gap between supply chain operations and the business.

Tax Optimization Meets Supply Chain and Procurement

KPMG frames the topic in their analysis by noting that “most multinational manufacturers are currently struggling to ‘triangulate’ their supply chain to achieve end-to-end visibility among customers, suppliers, partners and intragroup entities. This is not just about improving ERP systems or other ICT elements; it also requires organizations to carefully plan and monitor the division of roles, risks and tangible and intangible assets amongst the group.”