Spend Matters Afternoon Coffee

Jason's been talking about this for months now.
Manufacturing Moneyball: Using Big Data and Business Intelligence To Spur Operational Excellence -- In these economic times, it is important to examine existing business practices and ask difficult questions: "How can we work smarter? How can we improve our processes? What are we leaving on the table? How can we regain our competitive advantage through operational excellence?" This piece focuses on the manufacturing industry, which is experiencing an industrial renaissance as a result of its application of business intelligence ("BI" or analytics) to Big Data to uncover and leverage data that has remained either (i) hidden or (ii) unappreciated. In this respect, manufacturers that are ahead of the curve are playing what amounts to Moneyball, a strategy first implemented successfully by then-Oakland Athletics' manager Billy Beane and made famous first by author Michael Lewis and, more recently, by the movie of that name starring Brad Pitt.

I personally see a direct correlation to checked baggage fees. Anybody else?
Most Annoying Airline Delays Might Just Be in the Boarding -- It's the common tale of woe for many travelers waiting to board a plane. First the airline has to go through a long list of passengers who have priority: First- and business-class passengers, frequent fliers, elite card holders, uniformed members of the military, families with children, those who hold credit cards affiliated with the airlines, passengers who paid for priority seats. By the time coach travelers are called, the overhead bins seem to be already full.

Procurement personalities...
Procurement people should be likeable? That's c***, you stupid ******* **** -- Andrew F Smith, our guest blogger, talked yesterday about the qualities procurement people need now, particularly in terms of relationships. That was timely, as Procurement Leaders featured a piece last week I wanted to comment on. It came from Paul Teague's discussion with " author, teacher, and consultant Jimmy Anklesaria, founder and president of The Anklesaria Group, a Del Mar, CA consultancy", on the topic of the most important character traits for procurement.

MEGA AWESOME nerd stuff.
NASA is Working to Develop Tractor Beams -- One of the cooler, yet practical devices in the various Star Trek series was the tractor beam: a beam of light that enabled the Enterprise to either tow disabled ships or push away objects. Now, it appears, NASA would like to make the tractor beam a reality. Yesterday, the space agency announced that it has started funding research into three different approaches in the hopes that one of those approaches pan out into an actual, working tractor beam.

Sheena Moore

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