The Cool Connection bridges Finance and Supply Management

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The Cool Connection is based on the business game called The Fresh Connection (www.thefreshconnection.biz).   The games have been developed by Involvation Interactive, a Netherlands-based consultancy specialized in developing and marketing of simulations and learning programs in Supply Chain Management and Supply Chain Finance.

The objective of The Cool Connection(“TCC”) is to bridge the two worlds of supply chain management and finance through via gaming that forces multiple disciplines to work together. This web-based simulation aims to highlight and teach the interdependencies between these disciplines. Typical supply chain topics such as service level, delivery methods, production intervals and warehousing are linked with financial topics such as payment instruments, financing and cash management.

An important feature of The Cool Connection is KPI setting. This is actually quite powerful because the KPI setting per function has to be aligned with the common strategy and often it is not of course.

TCC supports a ranking per function based on certain KPI’s and the overall score of the team. Teams compete with each other to determine highest ROI

  • Best Sales Manager -highest revenue
  • Best Supply Chain Manager lowest inventory levels
  • Best Purchasing Manager lowest purchase price
  • Best Finance Manager lowest financing costs

A number of bank teams have played simulated rounds, and the winner is the team having the highest ROI.

Example

I think the TCC is a good learning tool to help companies and banks understand that there are trade-offs in any supply chain decision.  No one can model the real world, but having a game that puts people in charge of different departments, each with their own KPIs, helps them understand different outcomes.  Integrated transaction banking is high on the agenda of banks as their sales teams look to be more solution oriented and  need to get a better understanding of the real supply chain companies are faced with.

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