Tag: Supply Chain Optimization

What the Next Era of Globalization Will Look Like

Supply chains are being rearranged, slowly but surely, as companies reevaluate their sourcing practices and aim for more resiliency. The past few decades of globalization have had some major flaws; a new, more localized economic strategy can provide both resilience and sustainability. The old way saved big companies a lot of money as long as nothing went wrong. But when anything goes wrong—be it a tsunami, geopolitical event, or war—major problems arise. There’s no single answer. It very much depends on the country, industry, and which supply chain you’re talking about. At P&C, we have a practice dedicated to addressing, improving, and optimizing global supply chains. Please reach out to me to discuss your issues and ideas on this topic.

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Winging It: Inside Amazon’s Quest to Seize the Skies

With so many airlines, cargo, and logistics companies comprising our customer base, I couldn’t resist sharing this article. Where does Amazon Air stand today? The company now owns 11 planes and leases about 100 others, flown by seven air carriers that make more than 200 flights a day out of 71 airports, including a European hub near Leipzig, Germany. Last year, Amazon opened a $1.5 billion air hub at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG)—among the largest capital investments in the company’s history. Current status: As a result, nearly three-quarters of Americans in the continental US live within 100 miles of an Amazon airport. Read this story for some great insights regarding Amazon’s disruption strategy.

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Supply Chain Leaders, Prioritize These Three Talent Strategy Essentials

The need for ‘Renaissance Skills’ is back. While deep, specialized skill sets in procurement, operations, manufacturing, and logistics will always be important, companies also need individuals attuned to driving important bigger-picture outcomes like greater resiliency, innovation, business responsibility, and cost reduction. One approach, that we at P&C also advocate, is to implement a system of rotating assignments among the various supply chain departments. A deeper knowledge of connections and interdependencies will not only improve performance in their current role but also help prepare them for a future network planner role. Contact me to learn how this approach has delivered transformative outcomes for our clients.

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‘Vampire Energy’ Is Sucking the Life Out of Our Planet

We all know that vampires only exist in the fictional realms of literature and TV—right? Vampire energy, also called standby power or phantom loads, is power that certain electronics and electrical appliances consume even after they are placed in standby mode or switched off. The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) reports that more than 100 billion KWh are wasted every year because of vampire energy, costing American consumers over $19 billion. Compared to residential, industrial vampire energy consumption is a much bigger emissions problem. Life sciences is even larger. For them, unsustainability begins in the drug development stage and continues into the manufacturing process, where laboratories refrigerators and freezers, run nonstop to maintain pharmaceuticals and supplies. Addressing the problem can mean tougher regulation or investing in technology—either way, it’s time for industry to reduce its carbon footprint. Want to discuss about how you might improve your sustainability efforts? Please reach out to me.

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Are the Risks of Global Supply Chains Starting to Outweigh the Rewards?

The conflict in Ukraine is only the latest jolt to global supply chains. Disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, climate-related events, and geopolitical tensions were already undermining
their rationale. As companies rethink sourcing, they will have to consider new factors concerning geography and geopolitics, logistics, decarbonization and sustainability, and suppliers’ health. Over the last three decades, firms have taken advantage of reliable, low-cost transportation and a benign trading environment to leverage low-cost labor to deliver a plethora of products to distant markets. In the recent past, we’ve been encouraging this, as well. But now supply-chain “resilience” is getting tangled with economic and technological “sovereignty,” a euphemism for more localized production. Are you struggling with the changing dynamics of supply chain geo-politics and other pressures? Please reach out to me to discuss some alternative strategies to consider.

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The Right Way to Mix and Match Your Customers

Finding complementary patterns of demand across your customer base can help smooth out costly spikes and slumps, especially today given the extreme supply chain bottlenecks and related cost spikes. Smoothing demand variations requires that companies think differently about their customers, assessing them by how they fit into the overall portfolio rather than measuring the value of each on a stand-alone basis. This article highlights some valid suggestions: seek out new customers that exhibit variable demand; identify and retain customers that provide hidden value through asynchronous demand; and adapt creative operational agreements with flexible fulfillment windows. For deeper insights regarding how to identify and monetize this approach for your business, please reach out to me or your P&C point of contact.

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NDC Delivers on Promise for Major US Airline

P&C’s strategy continues to reap benefits. United Airlines’ executive speaks about its past, current, and future involvement in jointly mastering this major industry transformation. NDC allows them to make customers happy, personalize offers, and become true retailers.

Need to Fit Billions of Transistors on a Chip? Let AI Do It

Cutting-edge computer chips are increasingly important to just about every corner of the economy—from cars to medical devices to scientific research. Sketching out a computer chip is both complex and intricate, requiring designers to arrange billions of components on a surface smaller than a fingernail. Decisions at each step can affect a chip’s performance and reliability, so the best chip designers rely on years of experience and hard-won know-how to squeeze the best performance and efficiency from nanoscopic devices. Previous efforts to automate chip design have come to little; however, recent advances in AI have made it possible for algorithms to learn some of the ‘arts’ involved in chip design. This should help companies draw up more powerful and efficient blueprints in much less time. All of the major chip manufacturers are currently testing this approach, so stay tuned for future advancements and innovations that could affect your business.

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Manage the Suppliers That Could Harm Your Brand

I would call this the topic of the year, since almost all of our clients have had to address some challenges—many of them critical—regarding supply chains. There’s no doubt that the pandemic has placed a spotlight on working conditions in factories that supply global companies. To avert problems, firms often impose codes of conduct on their suppliers and perform audits to assess compliance. Do these measures actually lead to improvements? After an unsatisfactory audit, what are the chances the supplier will remedy matters? The authors studied thousands of factories around the world and found that suppliers are more likely to improve conditions if they: certify compliance with management system standards, adopt lean management, use union workers, avoid piece-rate pay, and serve once-tarnished buyers. The research also identified monitoring methods that can boost the odds of improvement and uncovered several factors that result in more-accurate audit reports. A worthwhile read for all.

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Competing on Platforms

An online platform’s success is dependent upon providing sellers with a large base of potential
customers while providing customers with a broad range of easily searchable offerings. For sellers and advertisers, entry costs are low. For buyers, there are none. The platform’s goal is to capture the largest market share relative to other platforms—a winner-takes-all strategy. Platforms have almost godlike powers. They are gatekeeper, rule maker, judge, and jury. For businesses dependent on a platform, this creates a dangerous situation. This article suggests finding a balance, but also: offering products or services in multiple channels, using the platform to market yourself, trying to game the system of algorithms that govern the platform, and diversifying your income streams.

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Creating a Platform for Authenticated Travel

Responding to COVID-19, P&C developed this solution for IATA enabling airline passengers to demonstrate compliance with applicable health requirements, helping the industry recover over the near term and setting the stage for the next generation of contactless check-in procedures in the future.

NDC Platform Unites Airline Industry Players

NDC, or New Distribution Capability, represents a fundamental change in the travel industry: enabling innovation, personalization, and brand recognition within a single technology platform. P&C helped create the strategy behind this new approach to delivering airline content across multiple channels and bringing a seamless shopping experience to customers.

Open Platform Strategy Reinvents Travel Industry

Travel industry, redefined. P&C helped cultivate the concept for a global market technology leader to realize its vision of broadening their business to envelop all aspects of travel, while creating an open platform for others to join this emerging transformative ecosystem.

Commitment to Responsible Fashion – en français

Nous pensons que les marques doivent être authentiques et refléter activement leurs valeurs fondamentales. Ici, nous nous sommes associés aux Galeries Lafayette pour intégrer leur éthique de responsabilité sociale dans leurs fonctions de merchandising et d’achat, et communiquer cet engagement aux consommateurs via le programme «Go For Good».

Commitment to Responsible Fashion

We believe that brands must be authentic and actively reflect their core values. Here, we partnered with Galeries Lafayette to integrate their ethos of social responsibility into their merchandising and buying functions, and communicate that commitment to consumers via the “Go For Good” program.

Digitizing One of the World’s Busiest Airports in Response to a Pandemic

For our airport clients, pre-flight processes for COVID-19 represent some of the most elaborate responses to the pandemic. With this client, we redesigned a comprehensive set of traveler interactions, developed and deployed transformative technology solutions, and trained an entire workforce to address a wide array of business processes ranging from check-in to boarding.

Global Cargo Operations for Passenger Airlines

Cargo operations represent a significant line of business for our airline clients. This video highlights many of the unique capabilities and cargo types we developed with one of our clients, which became especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Orchestrating a Seamless Launch to Residential Journeys

For property developers beginning relationships with new residents, the start of the customer journey is often fraught with challenges associated with home handover; here, we worked with this client to conveniently orchestrate a variety of different physical and administrative processes to provide a superlative initial experience.

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