Why Continuous Improvement Is as Important as Ever

USC Consulting Group

Continuous improvement has always been an important methodology for businesses looking to remain competitive; but now more than ever, it has become essential to face the challenges presented by the novel coronavirus. What is continuous improvement?

Supply Chain 2030: Forge a New Path

Supply Chain Shaman

Our goal is to build a guiding coalition to think differently to improve outcomes. Today only 12% of supply chain teams are driving improvement, performing better than their competitors and driving value (as determined by Price to Tangible Book Value). It cannot be about incremental improvement. It is clear that new outcomes cannot happen through a focus on traditional continuous improvement programs.


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Don’t Confuse Excellence with Perfection

Talking Logistics

After a lot of back and forth discussion, and not really getting through to him, I finally said, “If perfection is your goal, then you’re always going to be disappointed,” especially in baseball, where failing 7 out of 10 times at the plate is considered excellent. Don’t confuse excellence with perfection,” I told my son, words of advice that I repeat to myself tonight. Was Apple striving for perfection or excellence with those products?

Manufacturers Should Focus on This Most Critical Component for Manufacturing Operations Excellence


We conclude this two part series about manufacturing operations excellence by consultant Chuck Intrieri, by outlaying why manufacturers should focus on a critical component that will help sustain manufacturing operations excellence for years to come. What is Driving Sustainable Manufacturing Operations Excellence? Education and training must be continuous to keep up with the times. Running Towards LEAN for Better Manufacturing Operations Excellence.

Visibility in Transportation Management Leads to Supply Chain Excellence

Talking Logistics

With visibility as the key driver for an effective supply chain improvement strategy, businesses today must rely on building collaborative relationships in their extended supply chains to gain visibility from end-to-end. And as supply chains continue to grow, diversify and become increasingly global, total insight, oversight and foresight will become increasingly critical. in Freight Cost Savings Per Shipment: Logistics Sourcing activities improve negotiated rates.

The Journey of Supply Chain Excellence


You’ll note in the headline I use the preposition “of” instead of “to” when describing the “journey of Supply Chain Excellence.” Successful supply chain practitioners always seek opportunities to improve, understand the competitive and regulatory environments are fluid, and improvements in process, policy, practice, performance measures, and technology will continue to present themselves.

Yowza! A Nine-Step Decision Process to Help Guide Supply Chain Planning Selection

Supply Chain Shaman

<Bear with me… > Here I share a nine-step process in an attempt to help companies unravel the process for buying supply chain planning software. They center on how to make a good decision in the purchase of supply chain planning solutions. Most have purchased software, but are dependent on Excel spreadsheets. I take pride in the fact that business leaders turn to me to help them buy software. Sadly, only 7% of companies test before purchase.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Shippers

The Logistics of Logistics

Highly effective shippers realize that purchasing decisions should be based on value, not just cost. The best value combines a good price, with excellent on time performance and great service. Excellent communication. First, the routine, day to day shipping is improved through good written and verbal communication. Secondly, a lot of improvements are discovered through conversations between shipper and logistics pro. Continuous improvement.

Demand-Driven Transformation at Shell

Supply Chain Shaman

Nick Lynch is the Global Excellence Manager at Shell Lubricants, a division of Shell Global. At the Supply Chain insights Global Summit , Nick shared his story on driving demand-based improvements. Nick strongly believes that it is insufficient to drive supply chain improvement through incrementalism. It is just not enough to do a software upgrade or slowly push continuous improvement projects. This enabled improvements in Sales and Operations Planning.

Guest Blog Part 3: Listen to the Process


In this final entry, my focus turns to continuous improvement. I left you with the thought of keeping the goals of the mission in mind and continually reinforcing and communicating key outcomes and progress toward the attainment of those goals. This is the start to the continuous improvement process. Through patient listening, you’ll receive good – and sometimes surprising – process feedback that can lead to key quality and performance improvements.

Stories of Supply Chain Leadership: An Interview with Joan Motsinger of Seagate

Supply Chain Shaman

Many companies talk about Supply Chain Excellence, but most leaders struggle to define it. One supply chain leader, in a discussion last week, likened supply chain excellence to fitness. He felt that supply chain excellence was analogous. We then rated companies on their ability to manage and improve a portfolio of metrics: operating margin, inventory turns and Return on Invested Capital (ROIC). Our journey for supply chain excellence has changed and evolved over time.

Embracing the Digital Supply Chain

Supply Chain Shaman

Many of my clients save 5-10% of funds from their continuous improvement projects and self-fund their efforts. Digital path to purchase? The automation of the moments of truth in the buying cycle to decrease demand latency and better sense shopper and consumer demand in real-time.) Lora thinks that we are never too old to learn or to push for supply chain excellence. This week I am busy packing.

Household Products Industry Stuck in Neutral and Going Backwards

Supply Chain Shaman

average) and 3 times better ROIC for the period (33% versus P&G’s 11%), note that none of these three household products companies made progress on supply chain excellence in the period of 2013-2015. P&G’s rate of improvement on the Metrics That Matter was lower than the peer group. While they lost operating margin in the recessionary period, as shown in Figure 3, they improved turns and regained margin post recession. I was on my way to Peru.

Is A Customer-Centric Strategy the Same as Demand-Driven? Outside-In?

Supply Chain Shaman

The network senses, translates, and orchestrates market changes (buy- and sell-side markets) bidirectionally with near real-time data to align sell, deliver, make and sourcing organizations outside-in. In principle, there is greater value when the processes use independent channel signals, as opposed to dependent demand (orders and shipments), and build value networks to connect/orchestrate across buy- and sell-side relationships. This requires modeling and continued refinement.

Network Consolidation: A Step Forward for Market-Driven Value Networks?

Supply Chain Shaman

The network senses, translates, and orchestrates market changes (buy and sell-side markets) bi-directionally with near-real time data to align sell, deliver, make and sourcing organizations outside-in. For example, Infor purchased GT Nexus in 2015; OpenText purchased GXS in 2014, GHX purchased H-Card, LLC today; E2open purchased Terra Technology in May 2016 and Orchestro on Monday. Thoma Bravo purchased Elemica in June 2016.

Changing Mental Models

Supply Chain Shaman

In the last five years, while the physician is still important, the buying decisions transitioned from the supplier to the care provider. They are primarily focused on cost management on new purchase decisions. By and large, they struggle to gain cross-functional alignment on process redesign to improve outcomes. They lack the understanding of continuous improvement programs and struggle with alignment.

Building Outside-In Processes

Supply Chain Shaman

While traditional supply chain processes evolved from functional excellence definitions for source, make and deliver from the inside-out; to make the digital pivot and become more market-driven, companies need to define new supply chain processes outside-in. In the outside-in supply chain, the signals are from the buy and sell-side markets back to the enterprise. How can you capture customer requirements and reduce deductions and improve matching?

Integrated Planning: Is It Rubbish? Be Careful What You Ask For….

Supply Chain Shaman

To avoid heated political debates, the planning team needs to constantly evaluate the fit of the plan and drive continuous improvement on planning outputs. This requires continue education. There are seven traps: High Forecast Bias Improves Sales. Buying From the Same Vendor Improves Integration. At the end of this discussion, ask yourself, “Are you driving towards improving the goals of the corporation?

A River Runs Through It…

Supply Chain Shaman

To move the product, the company discounted the cars to stimulate purchase. Continue the Discussion at the Supply Chain Insights Global Summit. We will continue this discussion at the Supply Chain Insights Global Summit. Insights on leadership, continuous improvement, and talent development for emerging markets. A River Runs Through It is one of my favorite films. The scenes directed by Robert Redford are beautiful.

Seeing Beyond the Firewall

Supply Chain Shaman

Supply Chain Operating Networks: The building of supply chain applications using many-to-many architectures to connect multiple parties to multiple trading partners to improve multi-tier supply chain visibility, planning and execution to improve relationships in extended value chains. . The processes are largely batch, using data with great latency (orders and purchase orders). In 2004 Compuware purchased Covisint.

Optimizing S&OP for the High Tech Industry

DELMIA Quintiq

Where do we need to build vs. buy given constrained supplies? The results achieved provide continuous improvements in how to better anticipate demand and improve customer service levels, while reducing inventory costs and inefficiencies.

S&OP 249

You buy the inventory. You transform the inventory. You sell and service the inventory.


You buy the inventory, you transform the inventory and you sell and service the inventory. Even with these changes and expectations, you still have to buy the inventory, transform the inventory and sell and service the inventory. You Buy the Inventory. Full inventory visibility is critical when you are about to buy inventory. Material requirements planning (MRP)/advanced planning systems help calculate that buy.

Holding Ourselves Accountable for Business Results

Supply Chain Shaman

As a guest writer for Forbes, public relations firms constantly pepper me with requests to speak to technologists boasting of having answers to improve supply chain resilience. Few measured projects against improved results. To get where you are going, you have toe see where you are….

Reshoring Or Not, What is Manufacturing? 4 Questions to Ponder with Real American Manufacturers


Editor's Note: This is a two part series featuring Chuck Intrieri, who along with providing excellent insights over at his industry leading The Lean Supply Chain blog, is also a consultant who works with companies for Cost Reduction, Supply Chain Optimization, Logistics, Manufacturing, and 3PL Selection. Plastics were purchased and stored in huge silos. Question number four : Manufactured or Purchased components or parts to complete the finished goods.

Amazon’s Freight (Train) Is Coming


Editor’s Note: This article is from Steve Bettwy , Vice President – Quality and Business Continuity, Operational Excellence, and Continuous Improvement at Direct Supply. More recently they’ve started adding smaller trucks, purchasing 20,000 vans as well as virtually guaranteeing profit for anyone willing to run a fleet of their own. Two thirds of American households buy from Amazon.

Q&A With Women Making a Big Impact in Supply Chain


Over time, I’ve been fortunate to work in groups where both men and women were well represented, and I’ve had excellent leaders who championed my career by giving me the freedom to chart my own path.

5 Supply Chain Collaboration Essentials to Mitigate Disruptions

Logistics Viewpoints

Furthermore, it should leverage advanced AI and analytics combined with a configurable platform to ensure tight communication, information sharing and continuously improved collaboration with multiple tiers of suppliers, logistics providers and partners.

7 Strategic Performance Business Practices with 3PL KPIs and 4 KPI Problems to Solve


We continue our series on understanding the 3PL KPIs (Key performance indicators) from 3PL consultant, Chuck Intrieri of The Lean Supply Chain as it relates to the engagement with a 3PL. Are we improving? Process improvements and Continuous Improvement Opportunities. Both parties must develop human resources to improve operations. Human Resources should be trained for continuous improvement.

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Want a Better Supply Chain? Here Are 4 Reasons to Outsource Your Transportation Management

Talking Logistics

Third party logistics (3PL) and outsourcing of nearly every conceivable logistics function is a known, proven, and highly mature strategy that delivers near immediate financial and operational performance efficiencies that assist companies to reduce costs and improve supply chain performance. For example, a 3PL can combine the freight of 30, 40 or 50 clients to give shippers far more buying power than they would command “going it alone” in these trying times. Excellence ?

Success Story – Imperial Distributors Update

Herlitz Inventory Management

COVID-19 continues to negatively affect Imperial Distributors’ suppliers, causing shortages and delays leading to poor vendor fill rates. Their developers perform at a very high level and they are up for any challenge and help us with any problem and continually improve the system.

Logistics Cost Reduction: 6 Focuses to Create More Profit


An excellent Warehouse Management System (WMS) can help reduce costs by automating cycle counting, and maintaining location control. This emerging trend of technology use will continue to weed out inefficiencies and further logistics cost reduction but also allow for a more strategic mindset in logistics. . Create a consortium of buyers (a client and several of their suppliers) to buy needed logistics supplies (i.e.

Rising Interest Rates: Maybe It’s Time to Bring Back the Forgotten Art of Price Analysis


Price analysis is a subject that is often overlooked in supply chain education, (although it is certainly a big part of our chapter on Strategic Cost Management in Purchasing and Supply Chain Management ).

The Evolving Landscape of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Supply Chains & Logistics


Speed in decision-making, speed in reducing cycle-times, speed in operations, and speed in continuous improvement. This has severely affected the smooth supply chain functioning across the globe due to the “panic buying” ripple effect.

Staying Ahead of Holiday Allocation Issues as a Candy and Snacks Brand


And if it is fulfilled, it might not arrive in time, resulting in costly buy-backs once the holiday has passed. Sales teams can improve Collaborative Planning, Forecasting and Replenishment (CPFR) by proactively partnering with retailers on replenishment plans.

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What Remains the Same?

Supply Chain Shaman

” He continued, “Great mass marketing used be our differentiator, but now the barriers to entry have changed. Through digital marketing, small brands are cropping up all over, and it is sentiment analysis and digital content driving purchases. I find most of them focus on improving the status quo and selling large system projects. Their focus is on continuous improvement of current processes. Importance of a Center of Excellence and Network Design.

Walmart: 3 Keys to Successful Supply Chain Management any Business Can Follow


However, one thing that should come to mind is the prowess of the retail giant’s supply chain excellence. Not only has Walmart excelled over the decades in traditional supply chain management but with recent news as of late, Walmart is also focused on continuous improvement by investing more into emerging technologies to capture more of the e-commerce market as well as a focus on sustainability.

Supply Chain Planning


To support this, it may ask its dealerships to buy more cars than necessary in order to level production flow. No process is perfect, so continuous improvement initiatives are crucial to maintain operational excellence. Where many organizations focus on engineering standards, lean organizations focus on standard work in order to create a baseline from which to improve. Balancing the People, Processes, and Purpose of Supply Chain Planning.

7 Strategies to Improve Your Supply Chain!

Supply Chain Game Changer

Strategies to improve your Supply Chain article and permission to publish here provided by Claire Glassman. An effective and efficient supply chain can help your business improve customer satisfaction and money by minimizing wait times for in-demand products. Subscribe Here!

Cambridge, SoftBank back Parcel Perform in $20M Series A

The Supply Chain Journal

While Dana von der Heide and Arne Jeroschewski were working to improve e-commerce logistics within Asia Pacific at DHL, the pair realized advancing the experience for retailers could not be done with just one carrier.

6 Steps to Viable Supply Chain Reality

Logistics Bureau

While your company undoubtedly has sustainability on its supply chain agenda, creating momentum can be tricky in what is after all, a fairly new way to approach performance improvement. Then highlight any points where you see potential for improved sustainability.