thumb What is a VANVAN (Value Added Network) has history but no formal defining document. It isn't part of the X12 and isn't anywhere required. There is a lack of an existing generally accepted definition of what a VAN is. We will tie this in with the notion that they exist for the purpose of promoting and enabling transfer of data between trading partners, but that they are not a requirement of the process or infrastructure.

shuttered-warehouseRetailers are shuttering their own warehouse operations in favor of third-party logistics providers. Even grocery chains are turning to third parties; Kroger and Ahold USA are just a few examples of the growing number of grocers handing over operations to 3PLs, according to MWPVL International, a specialized supply chain, logistics and distribution consulting firm.

CargoCap Kreuzung transparent 460CargoCap is the fifth transportation alternative to the conventional systems of road, rail, air and water. It is a safe and economical way to carry goods quickly and on time in congested urban areas by underground transportation pipelines.

currencyOver the last couple months we have been discussing uncovering the actualized financial benefit of an EDI program to the bottom line of an organization. In our webinar held on May 15, we discussed the subject in depth, and shared the spreadsheet model that I have developed in order to answer this question. In order to supplement that webinar, I would also like to review the various pieces of the model and how you could use it for future analysis.

cloudAs a supply chain or ecommerce professional, I’m sure you’re weary of hearing about “the cloud”, “big data”, “virtualization”, “mobile apps”, and a bunch of other recent tech buzzwords. Once the hype dissolves over time, they’ll just vanish like a puff of smoke and the IT guys will stop talking about them in the cafeteria, won’t they?

analyticsRecently ec-bp.com hosted a webinar about transaction costing. The topic is a perennial one with the EDI and supply chain professionals. In that webinar Tony Dukes provided an explanation of a cost analysis methodology he developed and has been using within his own work. But I wonder if there are more obvious indications of costs that you may be experiencing.

office clutterThey have shows on it. Thousands of professionals are hired every year for the sole purpose to get rid of it. Most people hate it, but find a hard time getting rid of it. What am I talking about? Clutter!!

Scrum 256x256There are lots of project management resources available in the enterprise today, but which approach is right for your requirements? Choose the wrong project management methodology, and you can miss deadlines, overrun costs, incur the wrath of top management. Choose the right path, and projects will run smoothly, without delays, restarts or missed expectations.

big problemI like to listen to people, read group discussions, read expert opinions and make lists. So, from numerous sources, I made an unranked list of what LOTS of people regard as their biggest SCM problems. Then I searched out an expert opinion on what are the biggest SCM problems. The one I liked best was "Top Supply Chain Challenges" from the Supply Chain Council (the SCOR people). Next, I slotted the opinions of the workers in the trenches into the five categories from the Supply Chain Council. I could be wrong, see if you agree!!!

supply chain networkingHow do we justify a Social Supply Chain? Companies are not going to have any MORE Information than they have now, but they will use it differently/better because of what is happening with social technologies. Much of this information is beyond the four walls, but he wall between employees, vendors and customers is falling down. Thus highly socially networked companies that take advantage will find themselves in a more favorable position and see improvements over less networked companies. This means increased working capital, decreased inventories and better service levels.