The Supply Chain Category

Viscose Suppliers to H&M and Zara Linked to Severe Health and Environmental Hazards

Zara and H&M are among the fast fashion giants that have been found to source viscose from manufacturing sites whose processes pose serious health and environmental dangers, according to a new report from Changing Markets Foundation. When the foundation visited 10 such sites in China, India and Indonesia, it found that untreated hazardous waste was leading to severe air and water pollution, and for people who lived near the manufacturing sites, physical and mental disorders.

The Salesforce.com of Bud: Putting Some SaaS into the Marijuana Supply Chain

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As we introduced in the first part of this series, marijuana purchasing managers have long been putting up with managing orders, inventory and supplier relationships the old way. Faxes, texts, emails, Excel spreadsheets and even corkboards littered with Post-It notes were all fair game. But it wasn’t helping the buyers at the dispensaries or retail shops advance strategically. Enter SaaS platforms to save the day.

‘Best of the Best’ 10 Years On: APICS CEO Abe Eshkenazi on the Past, Present and Future of the Procurement Profession

Sales and operations planning hardly seems sexy on paper. Yet as more than 200 cross-functional professionals poured into the grand ballroom of the Chicago Marriott O’Hare for the 10th annual Best of the Best S&OP Conference Thursday, the participants seemed excited to tackle this essential business process, as well as learn from an impressive lineup of senior supply chain leaders. To learn more about the topics the presenters chose to speak on this year, I sat down with APICS CEO Abe Eshkenazi, who provided a fascinating perspective on how the conference has developed over the last decade.

‘Or Accept the Consequences’: Advice for Women in Supply Chain from Dr. Lisa Ellram and Dr. Wendy Tate (Part 2)

In Part 1 of this two-part interview, Dr. Lisa Ellram, distinguished professor of supply chain management at Miami University, and Dr. Wendy Tate, associate professor of supply chain management at the University of Tennessee – Knoxville, talked to me about the challenges that women working in supply chain face and how different professionals they’ve known have dealt with the challenges – from learning how to play golf to taking on extra responsibilities. This second half of the interview covers the difficulty of changing traditional work cultures, the subtlety of modern-day workplace challenges, and advice that the two professors give their female students.

Getting Ahead by Playing Golf: Dr. Wendy Tate and Dr. Lisa Ellram on Challenges Faced By Women in Supply Chain (Part 1)

This past spring, I talked to Dr. Wendy Tate, associate professor of supply chain management at the University of Tennessee – Knoxville, to find out why female student enrollment in the university’s supply chain program had been dropping significantly. The conversation eventually led to the topic of both real and perceived weaknesses of female professionals in supply chain. Tate introduced me to Dr. Lisa Ellram, distinguished professor of supply chain management at Miami University. The two of them recently talked to me about the challenges that female professionals in supply chain face and how different women they know have tried to deal with these challenges to varying degrees of success.

5 Quick and Crazy Ideas About What Amazon’s Acquisition of Whole Foods Means for the Intersection of B2B and B2C

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We, like a lot of folks, said “whoa” this morning when reading about Amazon’s announcement that it was buying Whole Foods. It stopped us in our tracks, which is not a surprise. For if we were to dissect our personal household spending, Whole Foods would certainly top our lists, like many other families who can afford it, no doubt. But what’s curious from our vantage point is not what Amazon’s purchase of Whole Foods — if approved by shareholders and if it passes regulatory hurdles — means for our own credit card bills. Rather, we’re keen to see what it means for Amazon Business and the intersection of business and consumer buying.

Legal Recreational Marijuana: How to Manage a Brand New Supply Chain

The relatively recent votes to legalize either medical or recreational marijuana in seven new states during the November 2016 election — California, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada (recreational); and Arkansas, Florida and North Dakota (medical) — have opened our eyes to the vast opportunities for players on all ends of the supply chain within this young industry.

Jabil Launches InControl to Take Aim at Supply Chain Point Solutions

Manufacturing giant Jabil launched recently what it calls a supply chain decision support platform, pitting its cross-industry expertise as a contract manufacturer against the services offered by point solutions. Called InControl, the platform offers five applications that provide visibility, collaboration tools and diagnostics for supply chain professionals. The apps cover supply chain visibility, event risk, design for supply chain, risk management and supply chain diagnostics.

Must-Watch Films and TV: Recommendations From and For Procurement Professionals

A few months ago, we published a post on book recommendations for procurement and supply chain practitioners. Textbooks they were not: I solicited recommendations both inside and outside Spend Matters for books that have relevant takeaways for procurement, even if they are about, say, tulips (that would be Mike Dash’s “Tulipomania”). Today we’re back with another round of recommendations, this time in the film and TV show category. The gist remains the same: What films and TV shows, while not nominally about procurement or supply chain, nevertheless contain pertinent lessons?

Are Your Supply Chain Peers Already Implementing Blockchain?

Last summer, our sister site Trade Financing Matters’ David Gustin wrote: “I guess someone must have told ‘American Banker’ and many other publications [that] you put blockchain in the title and people will at least open the article.” We admit to having no shortage of enthusiasm for writing about blockchain technology and its exciting implications for supply chains here on Spend Matters. As we wrote back in 2015, “Certainly you’ve heard of bitcoin. But do you know about blockchain, the technology behind bitcoin? If not, you should. We believe it has the potential to be one of the top technologies in the supply chain.”

Putting “Strategic” Back into Sourcing with Deloitte — New, Complimentary Research

The need is there for a wholly strategic supply chain sourcing platform built on a supply network design model. It's time to move on from the standard BOM-based sourcing workflows and low-level commodity sourcing efforts that utilize e-RFX tools. Pierre Mitchell, chief research officer at Spend Matters, makes his case in Part 1 of his two-part series: Deloitte's Game-Changing Analytics Platform Puts 'Strategic' Back into Sourcing.

This two-part research series is culled from his four-part series (linked to in this paper) and features a comprehensive approach to strategic supply chain technology and trends.

Switzerland Again Tops FM Global’s 2017 Resilience Index, But Rankings Have Shuffled

Switzerland has again taken the top spot on the FM Global Resilience Index, which ranks 130 countries and territories according to their resilience to supply chain disruptions. This fourth annual report, released alongside an interactive graphic, cites cyber attacks, natural hazards and supply chain failure among businesses’ most urgent risks today. The no. 1 country may have stayed the same as 2016, but a bit of shuffling took place throughout the list.