Welcome!

SDN Journal Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, TJ Randall

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Agile Computing, @DXWorldExpo

@CloudExpo: Blog Post

Why You Should Build Your Supply Chain from the Customer Up | @CloudExpo #SaaS #Cloud #Agile

The benefits of Supply Chain Orchestration for customers and businesses

Why You Should Build Your Supply Chain from the Customer Up

Satisfying customers and winning their loyalty is the foundation that every successful business is built upon. Delivering a consistently excellent experience builds a level of customer intimacy that will set your business apart from the competition. Consider that 80% of your company's future revenue will come from just 20% of your existing customers, according to Gartner.

The supply chain landscape is shifting, as customer expectations soar and new services and software bring greater complexity. There's a great deal of pressure to maintain operational excellence, integrate disruptive new technologies, and innovate for a superior customer experience. Tying these disparate threads together requires responsive Supply Chain Orchestration (SCO).

Finding the right balance
"There was a time when supply chains could settle for trade-offs: cost or speed, service or quality, flexibility or reliability. Those days are long gone," predicted Paul Keel, Senior Vice President, 3M Supply Chain, talking to Forbes. "The equation has shifted from an imbalanced ‘or' to an equilibrium centered on ‘and.'"

Crafting an optimal customer experience that not only meets, but ideally exceeds expectations, is difficult when there are so many moving parts and players involved. Consistency and reliability are requirements for a customer-centric system. However, companies must remain agile, so they can adapt to variations in demand, changes in the market and supply volatility. None of this is possible without real-time visibility and control.

Establishing visibility
All companies want better supply chain visibility. The average company has seven Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) instances and little confidence that ERP is going to close the widening gaps between the perceived importance and the actual performance of most supply chain elements, according to Supply Chain Insights research. One supply chain leader said, "Today, it is much like chewing gum, bailing wire and a shoestring."

Supply Chain Orchestration (SCO) can bridge the gaps between retailers, wholesalers, manufacturers, and logistics service providers. It can bind your systems, suppliers and service providers together to bring clarity and understanding. You need real-time oversight of the entire life cycle before you can find the optimal workflow. Establishing real-time visibility is a prerequisite for creating a better customer experience, because it empowers you to integrate the flow across multiple activities, services, and business units.

From visibility to control
Once you have established end-to-end visibility, you can start controlling your supply chain to meet customer demand and then measure performance against expectation. SCO highlights problems immediately as they arise, and offers the ability to build in automated rerouting, so you never let a customer down. Over time, the data you're collecting about your supply chain can serve as the basis for process optimization and predictive analytics. An accurate cost-to-serve analysis makes it easier to align your efforts and fulfil customer needs.

Find out where the weak spots are. Learn which suppliers and services are working well and which aren't. When you want to expand into a new market, or offer a new delivery service, SCO can help you to configure the required flows and understand the risks, the costs and the benefits involved. There's no need to take a leap of faith when you can see the cold hard facts. These kinds of actionable insights enable your supply chain to evolve, grow, and improve.

Customer chain control
Most companies build supply chains from an operational perspective. They rely on an ERP system to handle commercial orders, production, inventory and finances. They employ a Warehouse Management System (WMS) to deal with receiving, storage, and packing. They rely on a Transport Management System (TMS) to execute orders and move products around. Each element is focused on efficiency in its own sphere, with no oversight, no insight and little flexibility.

Where do the needs of the customer figure in all this?

If customer satisfaction and loyalty is your primary goal, then the customer must be front and center. If you truly want to deliver astounding service for your customers, then every customer order must be viewed as an individually optimized supply chain. It still needs to be fully configurable based on capacity and costs, and supported by business rules and learning algorithms, but the perfect blend of service should be driven by the ultimate customer requirements.

More Stories By Martin Verwijmeren

Martin Verwijmeren is co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of MP Objects (MPO), a leading provider of smart cloud software for supply chain orchestration with offices in Boston, Rotterdam, Tokyo and Hyderabad. He was previously vice president of IT for CEVA Logistics. He has a PhD in distributed systems for integral inventory management from Eindhoven University of Technology.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
JETRO showcased Japan Digital Transformation Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo® at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. The Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) is a non-profit organization that provides business support services to companies expanding to Japan. With the support of JETRO's dedicated staff, clients can incorporate their business; receive visa, immigration, and HR support; find dedicated office space; identify local government subsidies; get...
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...
In this presentation, you will learn first hand what works and what doesn't while architecting and deploying OpenStack. Some of the topics will include:- best practices for creating repeatable deployments of OpenStack- multi-site considerations- how to customize OpenStack to integrate with your existing systems and security best practices.
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Red Hat's Chief Archi...
Digital transformation has increased the pace of business creating a productivity divide between the technology haves and have nots. Managing financial information on spreadsheets and piecing together insight from numerous disconnected systems is no longer an option. Rapid market changes and aggressive competition are motivating business leaders to reevaluate legacy technology investments in search of modern technologies to achieve greater agility, reduced costs and organizational efficiencies. ...
As organizations shift towards IT-as-a-service models, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and now cloud environments grows with it. Commvault can ensure protection, access and E-Discovery of your data – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud, or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enterprise. In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Randy De Meno, Chief Technologist - Windows Products and Microsoft Part...
"With Digital Experience Monitoring what used to be a simple visit to a web page has exploded into app on phones, data from social media feeds, competitive benchmarking - these are all components that are only available because of some type of digital asset," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
It is ironic, but perhaps not unexpected, that many organizations who want the benefits of using an Agile approach to deliver software use a waterfall approach to adopting Agile practices: they form plans, they set milestones, and they measure progress by how many teams they have engaged. Old habits die hard, but like most waterfall software projects, most waterfall-style Agile adoption efforts fail to produce the results desired. The problem is that to get the results they want, they have to ch...
Organizations planning enterprise data center consolidation and modernization projects are faced with a challenging, costly reality. Requirements to deploy modern, cloud-native applications simultaneously with traditional client/server applications are almost impossible to achieve with hardware-centric enterprise infrastructure. Compute and network infrastructure are fast moving down a software-defined path, but storage has been a laggard. Until now.
Without a clear strategy for cost control and an architecture designed with cloud services in mind, costs and operational performance can quickly get out of control. To avoid multiple architectural redesigns requires extensive thought and planning. Boundary (now part of BMC) launched a new public-facing multi-tenant high resolution monitoring service on Amazon AWS two years ago, facing challenges and learning best practices in the early days of the new service.
HyperConvergence came to market with the objective of being simple, flexible and to help drive down operating expenses. It reduced the footprint by bundling the compute/storage/network into one box. This brought a new set of challenges as the HyperConverged vendors are very focused on their own proprietary building blocks. If you want to scale in a certain way, let's say you identified a need for more storage and want to add a device that is not sold by the HyperConverged vendor, forget about it...
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...
The best way to leverage your CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at CloudEXPO. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audienc...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place November 12-13 in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd international CloudEXPO | first international DXWorldEXPO and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICC-USA, a computer systems integrator and server manufacturing company focused on developing products and product appliances, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. ICC is a computer systems integrator and server manufacturing company focused on developing products and product appliances to meet a wide range of ...
With 10 simultaneous tracks, keynotes, general sessions and targeted breakout classes, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO are two of the most important technology events of the year. Since its launch over eight years ago, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO have presented a rock star faculty as well as showcased hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors!
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that the upcoming DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO New York event will feature 10 companies from Poland to participate at the "Poland Digital Transformation Pavilion" on November 12-13, 2018.
Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more business becomes digital the more stakeholders are interested in this data including how it relates to business. Some of these people have never used a monitoring tool before. They have a question on their mind like “How is my application doing” but no id...
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
"We're focused on how to get some of the attributes that you would expect from an Amazon, Azure, Google, and doing that on-prem. We believe today that you can actually get those types of things done with certain architectures available in the market today," explained Steve Conner, VP of Sales at Cloudistics, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.