Your supply chain is in great shape. You have visibility with your suppliers and with your customers, and understand where orders are, and when issues arise you can spot the source and track it down. But when your products arrive, are you certain they meet all the safety and regulatory constraints that make them safe to sell? In 2013 alone there were 28 million product recalls. If you were involved with any of them you have a good idea what information you didn't have at your fingertips. Is there a better way to track and manage this sensitive information?
For most of us involved in managing the supply chain, disruption is the last thing we want to consider. But many organizations are actually fostering disruptions of their own enterprise with goals to innovate and change the way things are done and the results that are achieved. Disruption caused by innovation can be seen as a progressive way to bring positive if dramatic changes to processes that have been functional for a long time.
Supply chain visibility is an interesting topic. At least it's interesting to those who want to talk about it, but possibly not so interesting to those that actually need to do something about implementing and making it a reality within their own enterprise operations. The disconnect however, does seem to be narrowing if KPMG's recent report is to be believed.
It is a given that to manage our supply chain, we have to have as much visibility as possible. Our SCM Control Tower is hooked up with logistics providers, parts suppliers, customers, manufacturing, procurement...did I forget anybody? Yup. The electronic commerce people who move this data all around for us: the Services Hub.
We have been gathering a list of issues that need to to be resolved before building a Supply Chain Control Tower: SCM and IT partnership; Visibility; Strategy and expectations; Foundation for the tower; and Team-building. Here's a recap of what we know, what we need, and where we might go.