cloud-computingMost Supply Chain Management executives are concerned with the risks from extended supply chains, but only a few have real end-to-end visibility into their supply chains. For those without this full visibility, outsourcing and globalization have put a “lot of rocks on their wagon.” They see increased demand/supply variability and increased lead times. They don't see problems until it is too late and then, they are slow to react. We need to aim for a demand driven Supply Chain Management solution in the Cloud. For discussion purposes, let's call it “SCM NET WORKS”

Let's start with a real time network. Where ever it is and whoever runs it, the aim is to get as many links in the supply chain on it as possible. It must be a multi-party network that uses the latest technology (Cloud, mobile apps, Big Data, etc). It is like a social network. It is a many-to-many network. It is bigger than a bread basket and it is faster than lightning. It will result in a real time decision-making supply chain operation that allows an unlimited number of trading partners to plan, execute, synchronize and optimize in real time all of the business processes and events that are going on in numerous extended supply chains. It includes everything from raw materials right up to the consumer.

SCM NET WORKS drives critical improvements in demand, supply, and logistics management. Effectiveness and efficiency are provided by best-of-breed applications with an entirely unique and correct view of the supply chain. It brings together both planning and execution processes in SCM according to demand and supply. It connects, coordinates, and enhances all enterprise systems, including supply chain management tools, ERP systems, third party applications, and newer cloud-based systems.

Integrated business planning in SCM NET WORKS melds short term goals with long term vision. It leverages the cloud platform to synchronize end-customer demand across all internal operations and key trading partners, including contract manufacturers, suppliers, logistics providers, and retailers; it tracks, monitors, and plans continuously and in real time. Smart demand-driven decision making in SCM NET WORKS produces improved supply chain performance. Smart supply choices in SCM NET WORKS reduce costs and improve service levels by coordinating the planning and execution processeses across the whole supply chain network participants, including manufacturers, co-manufacturers, co-packers, component suppliers, raw material suppliers, MRO providers, warehouses and carriers.

SCM NET WORKS combines planning, execution, fulfillment, collaboration, and business intelligence into a single multi-party, multi-echelon cloud-based solution that is designed to interface with existing enterprise systems. SCM NET WORKS continuously monitors changes to demand and supply to allow companies to plan, execute and collaborate with their entire supply network in a synchronous and closed loop fashion. The solution leverages demand, inventory, capacity, in-transit, and in-process supply to auto generate replenishment requirements and provide end-to-end visibility of planning and execution information to the entire value chain from procurement to payment.

Logistics in the SCM NET WORKS processes the whole logistics scene from order to delivery and enables customers to plan the whole transportation cycle, including procurement and contracting, shipment planning, execution and tracking, yard management, appointments, and financial and claims settlement – all on a single, cloud-based platform

I have concentrated somewhat on Supply Chain Control Towers. I am well aware of the deficiencies of many of the current implemented towers and feel we need to work towards an “SCM Control Tower II” approach.

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