Innovation as a Strategic Differentiator: How Your Workforce, Customers and Competitors Can Help

8:00 a.m. Opening Address
8:20 a.m. Are Supply Chain Practitioners Close Enough to the Customer?
(For more information click here)
9:35 a.m. Executive Exchange (Q & A)
10:15 a.m. Coffee Break
10:45 a.m. Talent in the Supply Chain
(For more information click here)
11:50 a.m. Executive Exchange (Q & A)
12:25 p.m. Luncheon
1:25 p.m. Luncheon Address, Phillip C. Yeager
2:05 p.m. How Can You Innovate Your Supply Chain and Transportation Practices?
(For more information click here)
3:25 p.m. Executive Exchange
4:10 p.m. Closing Remarks
4:30 p.m. Reception

Session Notes

Are Supply Chain Practitioners Close Enough to the Customer?

Today's evolving business priorities require that supply chain managers focus more on planning activities that move closer to the customer (for example, revenue growth versus cost reduction initiatives). Traditionally, supply chain practitioners have focused primarily on cost reduction in corporate cultures that are risk adverse. The traditional rationale for this view characterizes supply chains as focused on cost reduction or efficiency in contrast to those "responsive" supply chains built to be flexible and focused on customer expectations. CEOs caught in this paradigm continue to outsource to lower labor costs without finding new means to leverage supply chain capabilities to grow revenues. How can you change your company's perspective? This session focuses on collaboration processes, and the quantitative benefits of collaboration between organizations and their customers.

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Talent in the Supply Chain

Talent acquisition and retention is a frequent challenge cited by supply chain executives. This challenge is exemplified in positions ranging from senior management to day-to-day operations including manufacturing, warehousing, and transportation. This session focuses on finding and attracting alternative labor resources: thinking out of the box, how do we meet the demands placed on us by the talent shortage? This challenge is further magnified for organizations operating globally when supply chain talent must be developed and retained in dynamic markets. For the management positions, it is also important that the talent include cross-disciplinary expertise such as finance and new product development and introduction. There are a number of possible sources that can be considered, including collaboration, outsourcing, retraining, flextime, contract, and immigration are tactics that can be considered. These sessions discuss the strategies that leading firms are using to acquire, develop, and retain global supply chain talent.

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How Can You Innovate Your Supply Chain and Transportation Practices?

Innovation is extending to the supply chain. What are some examples of successful supply chain innovation and transportation? What is the impact of the technology cycle with supply chain systems? What are the risks of early adoption? Late adoption? Leading firms are extending their experience in product innovation to supply chain innovation. The results include changes in supply chain design, processes, capabilities, and sustainability considerations. Specific questions include: 1) Where do you locate production and distribution facilities to improve service, financial, security, and sustainability performance; 2) How can supply chain processes be integrated with partners to reduce redundancy and asset requirements; and 3) How can you demonstrate the customer value-add that can be provided by supply chain excellence?

This session will focus on these three areas innovative ways for collaboration among supply chain members, and the quantifiable benefits of collaboration to help achieve supply chain innovation. It will focus on how supply chain participants work together and collaborate to achieve the objectives of lean logistics and transportation; these strategies cannot be purely internally focused and must take into consideration customer benefits and operating efficiencies with the customer in mind (e.g. service metrics, cost competitiveness, etc.)

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