Supply Chain

Supply Chain

Don't Get Distracted By Counting the Pennies

In early November 2014, Staples Advantage (Staples' B2B operation) announced the results of a study they conducted regarding the role of telecommuters in the procurement process. They concluded that this small but growing portion of the workforce is not being properly incorporated in terms of their spend, adherence to process, and inclusion in the budgetary cycle. Since the research was sponsored...

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Supply Chain

Corrugated Price Forecast for 2015

The past year was a welcome one for buyers of containerboard and corrugated packaging as prices returned to relative calm and inventories were flush. Expect much the same in the coming year, according to analysts, as economic conditions continue to improve and manufacturers tap into growing demand in the food, beverage and automobile parts sectors. Cardboard or containerboard, whose major...

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Supply Chain

Procurement Is an Ever-Evolving Function

Credit: dream designs at FreeDigitalPhotos.net The DNA of purchasing professionals is changing. There is paradigm shift happening at most companies and procurement is being seen as a strategic function. Not only has the focus shifted to standardization and managing suppliers relationships, there has been growing demand of category-specific value add that purchasing managers can bring to the table...

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Supply Chain

Buyer's Market to Continue in 2015 with Growing U.S. Economy

Polyethylene resin. Heading into 2015, procurement and supply leaders can feel good about the economy and commodity prices. That's the word from the IHS executives and analysts who led presentations at the IHS Pricing & Purchasing Summit held recently in Washington, D.C. More than 150 procurement and supply leaders attended the event hosted by the global market information and analytics company....

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Supply Chain

In Risk Management, Small Oversight Can Equal Big Impact

Credit: Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net Oftentimes we are so focused on analyzing those things that can go wrong in production that we forget about the impact from the more indirect problems that can be just as crucial as missing a delivery date. In today's world, regulations are such a large part of doing business that companies of all sizes, from small businesses to major corporations,...

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Supply Chain

Mining for Savings: Sourcing Takes Team Approach

Credit: Alpha Natural Resources An economic downturn brings out the worst in some companies. They beat up suppliers to slash prices or delay payments, damaging valuable relationships. A downturn can bring out the best, too. These companies take a good, hard look at current purchasing practices and put in place the people and processes that help reduce cost and improve efficiency over the long...

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Supply Chain

Supplier Consolidation, Versus Rationalization, Leads to Stronger Supply Chains

Credit: manostphoto at FreeDigitalPhotos.net Recently, Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd., India's largest utility vehicle and tractor maker, announced plans to reduce its supply base by 10 percent a year for the next five years. We see this type of supplier consolidation happening more and more among discrete manufacturers, especially within the automotive industry. As you peel back the layers on this...

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Supply Chain

Purchasing Leaders Need Exceptional One-Off Leadership Traits

Running a purchasing or supply chain organization poses unique challenges to a leader. Purchasing organizations are constantly "fighting fires," handling unique crises and influencing a broad network of people internally and externally. The range of personal contacts, cultural differences, emotions, and challenges is global. In two of my books, I have used poetic license and characterized the...

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Supply Chain

Sustainability Is Not a 'Soft' Initiative for Procurement

"While it is certainly a part of the puzzle, sustainable procurement is not simply about selecting green products. It's about finding ways to enhance operational efficiency, realize cost reductions, reduce a facility's use of natural resources and their overall environmental footprint, and expand relationships between managers and their facility maintenance distributors."[1 The combined...

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Supply Chain

How to Define and Execute Success in HR Supplier Performance

The human resources professional spends a good portion of his or her day addressing unplanned issues with employees, management, and suppliers. When HR professionals are not consumed by these issues, they are in meetings, reading the latest regulatory changes, planning how to keep their programs competitive, and retaining their companies' most prized assets -- their employees. With such a lengthy...

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