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Supply (154)

Do We Need VANs?

Old Chevy_VanWith supply chain platforms providing the E to E linkage and Managed File Transfer Services- do VANS still play a role? The pros and cons of VANs, AS2, FTP, Electronic Commerce Communications Providers. We will be evaluating TRANSPORT, not mapping,  Web portals, or other services which could be performed by a VAN as well as by other EDI service providers.


What is a Social Supply Chain?

kinlock BlackberrySocial supply chain is using "social media technology" all across the entire supply chain : from supplier's suppliers to customer's customers. It means integration of social media technologies (collaboration, sharing) to connect and encompass the participants across the whole supply chain.


Do You Have the Right Score?

ScorecardUse a search engine, any search engine, and type in Vendor Scorecard or Supplier Scorecard.  The results will include hundreds of hits on the Internet.  What I find a bit surprising, however, is the hundreds of hits result in very little subject matter diversity.  There are vendor scorecard templates, software, samples, developing successful scorecard articles, and some organization specific vendor scorecard criteria.  This was far from my preconceived notion of what would appear in my search results.  Scorecards are very much a part of supply chain practice these days. World class organizations are utilizing them; but it seems very few are discussing them openly.


Turning the Retailer/Vendor Meeting Into a Partnership/Strategic Discussion

cooperation"Both sides would get what they wanted; that has always been our mantra." That sounds like a worthy goal in any relationship. How successful in real-world practice, though, is cultivation of the retailer-supplier pairing?


The EDI Mandate Letter

surprised-man-reading-letterYour worst case scenario is finally happening. You’ve received the dreaded ‘EDI Compliance’ letter from your largest customer. You don’t use EDI now because you're ‘too small’, and even though you signed a contract that said you’d support electronic trading, you never thought the customer would follow through with it. Now what?


The 800 Pound Gorilla

boxTo my surprise, when I arrived home from work the other night a nice brown box was sitting on my porch next to the front door.  It was addressed to me!  When I examined the box more closely, I didn’t recognize the shipper’s name; hence, I opened it with curiosity wondering what was inside.  It was my new watch!  But wait a minute, I didn’t order it on-line from the company on the ship label or packing list; I ordered it on-line from The Watch Company.  It then occurred to me…..I was the victim of the drop ship process!  So of course, this encouraged my mind to run amuck.  What are the pros and cons of this purchasing engagement I just encountered?


Food Safety Modernization Act, and What You Need To Do With ASNs

food-safety-modernization-act-S510It's time for grocers to adopt Advance Ship Notices (ASNs)--but the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) of 2011 isn't the most pressing reason.


The Amazon Effect on Distributors

What-me-worry-715605 We’ve heard much wailing and gnashing of teeth about the potential impact of Amazon’s move into the industrial supply (MRO) business with its Amazon Supply (AS) site. What’s going to happen to all of those poor industrial distributors? Will they go the way of the buggy whip, typewriter, and bookstore, or will they survive the onslaught of the feared Amazon machine? Well, although it’s early and little is known of Amazon’s specific plans for this market, I’d like to offer a couple fearless predictions for your reading pleasure.


How 3PLs Can Differentiate Themselves in a Crowded Market

logisticstruckGoogle the term “third-party logistics providers” and you’ll get way more than you bargained for – to the tune of thousands upon thousands of links. Estimates on the number of 3PLs – whose services include warehousing, fulfillment and supply chain management to suppliers and manufacturers -- ranges somewhere between 15,000 and 16,000 in North America. So trying to differentiate yourself in such a highly fragmented market is no easy task, to put it mildly.


Edge Integration: Leveling the Supply Chain IT Playing Field

iStock 000019549761XSmallFor years innovation and integration in supply chain software was limited to the Global 1000. They purchased multi-million dollar ERP and supply chain apps,  drove integration between trading, partners, demanded EDI connectivity, vendor managed inventory (VMI) , etc.. The ability for small and medium businesses to profit from these strategies was limited. It was simply too costly. Smaller companies simply had to react.  However, cloud computing, e-commerce, and edge integration are changing the game in the most profound way.


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