Internet of Things (IoT) is probably one of the most used buzzwords in our business. IoT is about making everyday objects more efficient and “smart” letting the users act only when necessary instead of constantly checking things, like a smart bin that tells you when its full or smart thermostat that learns your preferences so you do not need to adjust it manually constantly, etc.

Last year it was about time to retire my current sound system and upgrade to a state-of-the-art wireless sound system. The old one started to show hick-ups and was not easy to integrate with new ‘tools’ in the house (e.g. smart phones, tablets), inflexible to relocate because it used cables (comparable to an EDI connection) and used CDs and music records (non-dynamic library, only offline available).

2016 is approaching. It's a good time to think about New Year's resolution. It's one thing to pledge but the hardest part is uphold it. You could argue that resolutions may be overrated, the idea of working towards goals for the upcoming year, especially as a Supply Chain professional is something we would like to encourage. In order to avoid the same fate as last year, consider these five ideas for your supply chain management efforts.

International supply chains are often regarded as grasshoppers: They’re always looking to find the cheapest materials, the lowest cost of labor and the lowest tax rates. While striving for profit maximization and growing “efficiency,” they are, in fact, caught up in a race to the bottom. I’m not interested in this kind of race and I believe many people feel to the bottom of their hearts that this is the wrong kind of race. So can we turn this game upside down and make it a race to the top?

I attended the Second Supply Chain Finance forum in December, 2014 and it was interesting to see all different, sometimes contradictory, perspectives from different stakeholders in the field; Buyers, Suppliers, Fund Providers and Platform Providers.

Imagine the following situation:
You're involved in a project to lower the operational costs by deploying a web platform where your customers can place their orders which automatically show up in your own ERP system, allowing you to immediately work on the orders without having to manually enter the order details in your ERP. In exchange you are willing to share information about stock levels and order status with your customer. This would illustrate a typical give-to-get scenario.