Tuesday, August 31, 2004

B. is an operational tool

According to Philipp Nattermann from Johannesburg, B. is simply an operational tool.

Top Executives all want to occupy the point on the strategic landscape that their most successful competitor has staked out. Soon other competitors can be seen herding around that best-practice company's product, pricing and channel strategies.

Products and services become increasingly commoditised, and margins tumble as more and more incumbent companies compete for smaller and smaller segments of customers.

Clustering around the strategy of the most successful company actually destroys value. Companies that had been making a profit in less-profitable sectors of the market leave them to join the herd. The combination of profit lost through this abandonment and static overall earnings at the herding point forces industry earnings downwards.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Whitepaper: how best-in-class supply chain centers are driving efficiency and value

Supply chain organizations have to take every opportunity to lower cycle time, reduce uncertainties and stay current with market trends. Supply chain executives need to optimize both dimensions by working closer with business units, other corporate groups, and with customers directly. A new B. study by Best Practices, LLC takes a data-driven look at how best-in-class supply chain centers:

  • Increase efficiency by setting accurate performance metrics for order management & distribution center operations
  • Respond to market needs by leveraging new technology and driving automation in order management processes
  • Ensure high satisfaction levels at business units, operating companies and external customers
  • Define, measure and communicate value effectively to internal and external customers

Research findings - collected from primary executive interviews, surveys and research with more than a dozen leading companies - reveal that top companies:

  • Team with operating/business units and e-commerce groups to identify and approach key customers for conversion to 100% electronic transactions and to advanced collaboration techniques, like forecasting.
  • Use activity-based costing universally to increase visibility of operational costs to the operating/business units.
  • Enhance CSR authority and training to provide elevated and proactive levels of customer service.
  • Drive cycle time reductions everywhere through six sigma teams and through expanded definition and use of cycle time metrics.