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A refreshing innovative approach to Supply Chain Excellence…

Operational or Supply Chain Excellence has been one of the buzzwords that is often heard around senior Supply Chain Execs. However, is excellence the right terminology, or do we need to rename “excellence”?

Due to globalisation, continuous creation of new small “global” businesses that are able to compete with eatablished organisations, leading supply chain organisations have started to look beyond “operational excellence”, best-in-class, benchmark data and industry metrics, towards using a combination of their own internal and tailored external relevant data to continuously review, asses and adopt evolving leading-edge processes, technologies and behaviours to stay ahead in this ever increasing competitive business landscape. 

This new approach, named Operational Innovation, has become an effective methodology to deliver transformational impact through the following elements…

Innovative solution design

Instead of spending a lot of time and effort in designing the optimal operational and supply chain solutions, successful organisations focus on creating a solid solution foundation, which is constantly reviewed and improved with cross functional teams to deliver cross-divisional, fit-for-purpose solutions. 

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Close collaboration

Instead of phased hand-offs between Subject Matter Experts, Technology Specialists, Operational teams, Sales, Finance, etc., leading innovative supply chain solutions should be created through continuous close collaboration with all impacted process participants at every stage of the supply chain journey. 

Use of Robotics

A recent article (How will manufacturing robotics change in 2017) describes how robotics will change the industry as early as 2017. The article describes how by 2019, 35% of leading companies in logistics, health, utilities, and resources will start implementing robotics to automate their operations. 

End-to-end Solution integration

Key to delivering true Supply Chain Innovation is the manner in which organisations integrate end-to-end processes, technologies, data and internal vs. external organisational units. Due to the external focus on innovative technologies, many organisations are still only focused on technology integration, but leading businesses have started explore how different cloud solutions can be integrated across their partners and customers, creating hybrid learning organisational models which go beyond the traditional joint venture organisation models.

Continuously generate value

In Supply Chain it’s crucial to continuously generate value. Through the ise of innovative technologies,  solution partnerships, operational models, etc. leading supply chain organisations are known to continuously review, adapt and improve their supply chain environment to deliver operational innovation. It allows supply chain to go continuously deliver a “new and improved” excellence.  

In today’s world, Supply Chain Excellence is not enough. There is no “end-station”. It’s critical for supply chain organisations to adopt an ongoing innovation journey, which requires people with the right mindset, experience levels, attitude and curiosity to deliver Supply Chain Innovation….

 

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