Welcome!

Industrial IoT Authors: Derek Weeks, Yeshim Deniz, Kevin Jackson, Elizabeth White, SmartBear Blog

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Agile Computing, @BigDataExpo

@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.


@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that EnterpriseTech has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. EnterpriseTech is a professional resource for news and intelligence covering the migration of high-end technologies into the enterprise and business-IT industry, with a special focus on high-tech solutions in new product development, workload management, increased effi...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devic...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SourceForge has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SourceForge is the largest, most trusted destination for Open Source Software development, collaboration, discovery and download on the web serving over 32 million viewers, 150 million downloads and over 460,000 active development projects each and every month.
Multiple data types are pouring into IoT deployments. Data is coming in small packages as well as enormous files and data streams of many sizes. Widespread use of mobile devices adds to the total. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists looked at the tools and environments that are being put to use in IoT deployments, as well as the team skills a modern enterprise IT shop needs to keep things running, get a handle on all this data, and deliver...
We build IoT infrastructure products - when you have to integrate different devices, different systems and cloud you have to build an application to do that but we eliminate the need to build an application. Our products can integrate any device, any system, any cloud regardless of protocol," explained Peter Jung, Chief Product Officer at Pulzze Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM has been named “Diamond Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st Cloud Expo, which will take place on October 31 through November 2nd 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, California.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CHEETAH Training & Innovation will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct. 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CHEETAH Training & Innovation is a cloud consulting and IT training firm specializing in improving clients cloud strategies and infrastructures for medium to large companies.
SYS-CON Events announced today that TMC has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo and Big Data at Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Global buyers rely on TMC’s content-driven marketplaces to make purchase decisions and navigate markets. Learn how we can help you reach your marketing goals.
"MobiDev is a Ukraine-based software development company. We do mobile development, and we're specialists in that. But we do full stack software development for entrepreneurs, for emerging companies, and for enterprise ventures," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Conference Guru has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. A valuable conference experience generates new contacts, sales leads, potential strategic partners and potential investors; helps gather competitive intelligence and even provides inspiration for new products and services. Conference Guru works with conference organi...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend 21st Cloud Expo October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-14, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
IoT solutions exploit operational data generated by Internet-connected smart “things” for the purpose of gaining operational insight and producing “better outcomes” (for example, create new business models, eliminate unscheduled maintenance, etc.). The explosive proliferation of IoT solutions will result in an exponential growth in the volume of IoT data, precipitating significant Information Governance issues: who owns the IoT data, what are the rights/duties of IoT solutions adopters towards t...
With the introduction of IoT and Smart Living in every aspect of our lives, one question has become relevant: What are the security implications? To answer this, first we have to look and explore the security models of the technologies that IoT is founded upon. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nevi Kaja, a Research Engineer at Ford Motor Company, discussed some of the security challenges of the IoT infrastructure and related how these aspects impact Smart Living. The material was delivered interac...
No hype cycles or predictions of zillions of things here. IoT is big. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, Associate Partner at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data analytics considerations, edge-to-cloud tec...
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists examined how DevOps helps to meet the de...
When growing capacity and power in the data center, the architectural trade-offs between server scale-up vs. scale-out continue to be debated. Both approaches are valid: scale-out adds multiple, smaller servers running in a distributed computing model, while scale-up adds fewer, more powerful servers that are capable of running larger workloads. It’s worth noting that there are additional, unique advantages that scale-up architectures offer. One big advantage is large memory and compute capacity...
"When we talk about cloud without compromise what we're talking about is that when people think about 'I need the flexibility of the cloud' - it's the ability to create applications and run them in a cloud environment that's far more flexible,” explained Matthew Finnie, CTO of Interoute, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Datanami has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Datanami is a communication channel dedicated to providing insight, analysis and up-to-the-minute information about emerging trends and solutions in Big Data. The publication sheds light on all cutting-edge technologies including networking, storage and applications, and thei...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Silicon India has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Published in Silicon Valley, Silicon India magazine is the premiere platform for CIOs to discuss their innovative enterprise solutions and allows IT vendors to learn about new solutions that can help grow their business.
The Internet giants are fully embracing AI. All the services they offer to their customers are aimed at drawing a map of the world with the data they get. The AIs from these companies are used to build disruptive approaches that cannot be used by established enterprises, which are threatened by these disruptions. However, most leaders underestimate the effect this will have on their businesses. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Rene Buest, Director Market Research & Technology Evangelism at Ara...