Get on the Supply Chain Bandwagon — Sage Advice for the Middle Market

While many would argue that North America has been the king of the middle market -- after all, the US was built primarily on small, regional businesses -- it appears likely that this title is likely to move to China or India as enterprising, young businesses flourish in these markets thanks to regional and global demand. Therefore, it's not surprising that you'd encounter sage advice for such organizations in local periodicals in these countries. Out of India, Business Express has sage advice for middle market organizations that need to hop on the supply chain bandwagon.

In the piece, the author argues that small and medium sized businesses are "often are not large enough to justify centralised organisations for supply chain management ... The result is a focus on individual facilities and, therefore, on a decentralised supply chain organisation." In addition, "SMEs often don’t have personnel who have knowledge of sophisticated supply chain strategy and operations. Most of them recruit people with strong operational distribution and logistics skills rather than those with a broader supply chain perspective and experience."

This results in organizations that create processes "site by site with an emphasis on internal local efficiency ... [often lacking] detailed process documentation." While these observations are coming out of a rapidly developing Indian manufacturing marketplace, I'd argue they hold for most similar organizations in North America and Europe -- not to mention China -- as well. Without question, the middle market is a different supply chain animal worldwide, and talent and skill sets typically lag those of larger companies.

Jason Busch

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