The Panama Canal Expansion and the Future of the Supply Chain, Part 2

December 30, 2011

In Part 1 of this two-part series, I discussed the views of five of the six experts interviewed by Bob … Continued

The Panama Canal Expansion and the Future of the Supply Chain, Part 1

December 29, 2011

In yesterday’s post entitled Supply Chain 2012: What Lies Ahead, I looked at some predictions about what is going to … Continued

Supply Chain 2012: What Lies Ahead?

December 28, 2011

This is the time of year when people start thinking about the months ahead. In this post, I’ll look at … Continued

Multi-channel Commerce Gaining Ground

December 27, 2011

Scott Fenwick, senior director of product strategy for Manhattan Associates, writes, "With consumers' growing expectations to shop the way they … Continued

Resilience, Risk, and Personality

December 26, 2011

Having read this post's headline, you might be wondering what personality has to do with resilience and risk. In a … Continued

Christmas 2011

December 23, 2011

Although Sunday is the Christian holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus, it is part of larger holiday season that marks … Continued

Radical Innovation: Can It Still be Done?

December 22, 2011

Jill Jusko, a Senior Editor at IndustryWeek, writes, "Global competition is in a take-no-prisoners mode. To compete, the U.S. manufacturing … Continued

Global Trade Management

December 21, 2011

The consulting world offers all sorts of management solutions to companies. For multinational corporations, one of the latest solutions to … Continued

Piracy on the Freeways

December 20, 2011

You read a lot these days about piracy on the high seas; but, you read relatively little about what could … Continued

Emerging Markets and the Supply Chain

December 19, 2011

Emerging market countries have been on an economic roller coaster over the past couple of years. Analysts continue to insist, … Continued

Supply Chain Management Education, Part 2

December 16, 2011

Part 1 of this two-part series discussed the rising interest in Supply Chain Management (SCM) education. In this post, I'll … Continued

Supply Chain Management Education, Part 1

December 15, 2011

Some interesting articles and posts have been written recently about supply chain management (SCM) education. Victoria Taylor is even bold … Continued

Supply Chain Innovation, Part 2

December 14, 2011

In Part 1 of this two-part series on supply chain innovation, I discussed the importance of networking, collaboration, and culture. … Continued

Supply Chain Innovation, Part 1

December 13, 2011

Dustin Mattison, founder of, indicates that his passion "lies in harnessing the power of the Internet to affect change … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 10

December 12, 2011

This is the final segment of a 10-part series on big data. That does not mean, however, that I won't … Continued

Dynamic Collaboration: Inside and Out

December 9, 2011

Lucy Tesseras, writes, "Supply chain collaboration has long been talked about as the next big thing, yet more often than … Continued

Update on the Shipping Industry

December 8, 2011

As we look forward to 2012, a glut of shipping capacity may be good news for customers and bad news … Continued

SAP Heads for the Cloud

December 7, 2011

One of the first groups that attempted to deal with the problem of integrating incompatible data included five former IBM … Continued

SaaS: Speeding Up or Delaying the Future?

December 6, 2011

Stephanie Neil writes, "Hosted applications remove the burden of buying and maintaining hardware, but off-premise systems could cause data integration … Continued

Multi-Channel Commerce: The Rise of E-Commerce

December 5, 2011

Gopi Krishnan, head of Infosys’ Supply Chain Management practice within Enterprise Solutions, writes that his clients see an “increasing need … Continued

Some Thoughts on the Future of Computing

December 2, 2011

An article in The Economist states, "We are entering what some in the technology industry refer to as a post-PC … Continued

Pallets and the Supply Chain

December 1, 2011

We're all aware of the millions of pallets (or skips) in use around the world that help in the transportation … Continued

Supply Chain Optimization

November 30, 2011

Robert J. Bowman, managing editor of SupplyChainBrain, writes, "Before companies can apply state-of-the-art technology to that crucial exercise [of optimizing … Continued

Liability and Risks in Cloud Computing

November 29, 2011

In a post entitled Business Heads for the Clouds, I briefly touched on the subject of liability and promised to … Continued

Supply Chain Resiliency Still an Issue

November 28, 2011

The Business Continuity Institute, a UK-based organization that was established "to promote the art and science of business continuity management … Continued

Learning to Innovate

November 25, 2011

Zoe McKay writes, "Some people are born innovators. Others can become innovators, providing they follow some simple guidelines. That's the … Continued

Thanksgiving 2011

November 24, 2011

Today is the Thanksgiving Day holiday in the United States. Like the past several years, it finds many people in … Continued

Uncertainty, Confidence, and Catch-22 in the Supply Chain

November 23, 2011

Daniel Dumke writes, “For several years now researchers [have] predicted, that in the future supply chains [will] compete, not companies.” … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 9: Physical Security

November 22, 2011

One might think that discussions about “big data” would start and end in cyberspace. The fact of the matter is … Continued

Local Sourcing Gaining Ground

November 21, 2011

Last fall, IBM announced that it had partnered with six other companies (AT&T, Caterpillar, Bank of America, Citigroup, Pfizer, and … Continued

Big Business: Good or Bad?

November 18, 2011

I recently read two articles that express very different opinions about big business. The first article, written by entrepreneur and … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 8: Cybersecurity

November 17, 2011

Joseph King, Group Vice President, JDA Managed Services, writes, "Before your business makes the leap into cloud computing, or increases … Continued

Innovation and Corporate Culture

November 16, 2011

Annually, Booz & Company analysts issue a report about corporate innovation. This year’s study focuses on corporate culture. [“The Global … Continued

Social Media and the Supply Chain

November 15, 2011

Today you'll notice that there is a new name, look, and feel to the blog. The change was made to … Continued

Supply Chain Complexity

November 14, 2011

The Financial Times recently asked three commentators, including good friend, Lora Cecere, to answer the question: "Do complex supply chains … Continued

To Innovate the U.S. Must Manufacture

November 11, 2011

The twentieth century was almost universally recognized as the American century. There were numerous reasons for that; but, high among … Continued

Business Heads for the Clouds

November 10, 2011

Rolfe Winkler writes, "After burying its head in the sand, Oracle is finally looking skyward. Better late than never for … Continued

The Growing Importance of Supply Chain Analytics

November 9, 2011

Dawn Mathew Varghese, a Senior Consultant at Infosys, writes, "Supply Chain Analytics is a very hot topic today and has … Continued

Artificial Intelligence and the Era of Big Data

November 8, 2011

Despite initial reports that Apple had disappointed everyone by introducing the iPhone 4S instead of the much-rumored iPhone 5, the … Continued

Regional, Local, and Sustainable Sourcing

November 7, 2011

Steve Hall, Deputy Editor of Procurement Leaders Magazine, provocatively writes, “Collaboration is, for some, mostly pointless – we’ve all got … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 7

November 4, 2011

In yesterday's post, one of the things I discussed was a study written by McKinsey consultants Brad Brown, Michael Chui, … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 6

November 3, 2011

Steve Lohr, technology columnist for the New York Times, writes: "The quest to find decision-making insights in the modern data … Continued

End-to-End Supply Chain Visibility: It’s no VUCA-tion for Supply Chain Professionals

November 2, 2011

In a survey conducted by ChainLink Research, pollsters "found that the vast majority of respondents (nearly 80%) do not manage … Continued

The Missing Part is Always the Most Important Part

November 1, 2011

I read with interest a short case study about the Boeing 787 Dreamliner [“Case study: Boeing’s Dreamliner,” by Ravi Anupindi, … Continued

Five Things to Do and Five Things to Avoid when Managing Supply Chain Risk

October 31, 2011

The past couple of years have witnessed some unprecedented natural disasters that have created major disruptions to supply chains (e.g., … Continued

Innovation Hubs and Regional Innovation Clusters

October 28, 2011

Last fall, New York Times' columnist Thomas Friedman found himself in a conversation with Kishore Mahbubani, the dean of the … Continued

The Big Data Dialogues, Part 5: Algorithms

October 27, 2011

In the prologue to the book entitled Algorithms, Professor Sanjoy Dasgupta, from the University of California – San Diego, and … Continued

Supply Chain Sustainability Takes Root

October 26, 2011

Steve Hall, Deputy Editor of Procurement Leaders, asks an interesting question in a blog entitled "Sustainability: When is it your … Continued

Supply Chain Performance

October 25, 2011

Companies are forever trying to come up with clever names to support the solutions they are pushing. I admit that … Continued

Consumer Goods Technology Features Enterra Webinar

October 24, 2011

Earlier this month, Enterra Solutions sponsored a webinar entitled "Building a Learning Supply Chain: New Success at Newell Rubbermaid and … Continued

“Startup America” Finally Starts Up

October 21, 2011

For readers who really pay close attention to detail, you might have noticed that I've removed entrepreneurism as one of … Continued

Upgrading Your Supply Chain without Breaking the Bank

October 20, 2011

In a post entitled Supply Chain Transformation, I cited an interview that Dustin Mattison had with Jeffrey Boudreau, a Partner … Continued

Supply Chain Sustainability Becoming Center Stage

October 19, 2011

When a particular business topic can dramatically affect a company's reputation or bottom line, one way of making sure that … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 4

October 18, 2011

In Part 3 of these on-going dialogues about big data, I discussed a couple of software tools that are widely … Continued

Rebranding Your Company

October 17, 2011

Today, my company, Enterra Solutions, LLC, officially announced the launch of its new web site and a new slogan, "Welcome … Continued

Corporate Disease and Darwinism

October 14, 2011

Entrepreneur and venture capitalist Luke Johnson believes that large corporations, despite having a favorable business landscape, fail to capitalize on … Continued

RFID Tagging and the Bottom Line

October 13, 2011

Often, when the subject of RFID tags is raised, the first thought that comes to mind is increased costs. After … Continued

Supply Chain Transformation

October 12, 2011

Earlier this year, Primark, the fastest growing fast-fashion retailer in Europe, was named “winner of the Retail category in the … Continued

C-Level Supply Chain Executives

October 11, 2011

Half a dozen years ago Lisa Harrington wrote, "Logistics and supply chain management continue to grow in stature within the … Continued

Building a Healthy Supply Chain

October 10, 2011

Although Sue Gillman, Partner and Co-owner of Aveus, a global strategy & operational change firm, believes that Gartner is good … Continued

Update on Somali Piracy

October 7, 2011

At the moment, Somalia is known for three things: dysfunction, starvation, and piracy. The world has basically ignored Somalia's internal … Continued

Simulations and the Supply Chain

October 6, 2011

A recent article in The Economist magazine talked about the increasing use of computer models and simulations to make political … Continued

To Survive the Current Economic Malaise Retailers Should Try a Little Customer Service

October 5, 2011

Milind Mody, founder and CEO of eBrandz, an Indian search marketing company, writes about a small, but very demanding, customer … Continued

Building a “Learning Supply Chain”

October 4, 2011

As supply chains become increasingly global and integrated, information systems need greater agility to manage the resulting complexity and the … Continued

Women Entrepreneurs: Going Gaga

October 3, 2011

Kristyn Wilson, Media Relations Director for Resource Interactive, told me, “The number of woman owned businesses in the U.S. is … Continued

Friendship, Happiness, and Courage in the Workplace

September 30, 2011

As an employer, I’m aware that job satisfaction is critical for retaining great employees. Employers would love to be able … Continued

Orabrush, Laughter, and the Wal-Mart Supply Chain

September 29, 2011

Every manufacturer wants to get its products on Wal-Mart’s shelves. The reason is simple: Wal-Mart is the world’s largest retailer. … Continued

Managing Supply Chain Risk

September 28, 2011

Supply chain risk management expert Daniel Stengl writes, “After a major disruption there are many firms [that] severely suffer and … Continued

Is Risk Assessment Getting More Difficult?

September 27, 2011

Despite access to more information and significant increases in available computing power, Carol Matlack concludes, “As the global economy gets … Continued

Improving Supply Chain Performance

September 26, 2011

Last December, Max Jeffrey, an integration consultant at Kinaxis, asked an important question, "Do you know the impact of the … Continued

Creating Jobs in America, Part 2

September 23, 2011

In yesterday's post, I discussed some of the initial recommendations offered by the President's Jobs and Competitiveness Council as well … Continued

Creating Jobs in America, Part 1

September 22, 2011

In June, two members of the President's Jobs and Competitiveness Council, Jeffrey Immelt, the Council's Chairman as well as the … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 3

September 21, 2011

In Parts One and Two of these dialogues, I discussed the subject of big data from a supply perspective — … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 2

September 20, 2011

In Part 1 of this series, I discussed a blog by supply chain analyst Lora Cecere that introduced us to … Continued

The “Big Data” Dialogues, Part 1

September 19, 2011

Supply chain analysts Lora Cecere and Bob Ferrari have engaged in an online dialogue about big data in the supply … Continued

Attention to the Cold Arctic Heats Up

September 16, 2011

Last December I wrote about the attention that the so-called Northwest Passage is receiving now that climate change has made … Continued

Update: Reducing the Operating Costs of Truck Transportation

September 15, 2011

After posting a blog entitled Reducing the Operating Costs of Truck Transportation, I was contacted by Tom Stitt from Staxxon, … Continued

Does Kindness Pay?

September 14, 2011

Stephen Grellet, a famous Quaker missionary, wrote, “I expect to pass through this world but once; any good thing therefore … Continued

The Birth and Death of Industry Hubs

September 13, 2011

A couple of years ago Ann-Elise Henzl, a reporter for Milwaukee's public radio station WUWM, asked a provocative question: "Is … Continued

Reducing Supply Chain Complexity

September 12, 2011

In a post written last month, noted supply chain analyst Lora Cecere discussed the complexity she perceives in many corporate … Continued

Teaching Problem Solving Skills in Math and Science, Part 2

September 9, 2011

In yesterday’s post, I discussed a number of recommendations that have been offered about how to get more students into … Continued

Teaching Problem Solving Skills in Math and Science, Part 1

September 8, 2011

There has been a lot of discussion about the American education system in the news recently. It seems that everyone … Continued

Entrepreneurship Not for the Faint of Heart

September 7, 2011

Although I'm a big advocate of entrepreneurship, I'm also a realist. Although many entrepreneurs dream of making their fortune by … Continued

Supply Chain Visibility

September 6, 2011

Supply chain visibility is a characteristic that most analysts believe will be increasingly important in the years ahead. They also … Continued

Labor Day 2011

September 5, 2011

I would have liked to have titled this post “Happy Labor Day”; but, with an unemployment rate hovering over 9 … Continued

Electrolux Design Lab 2011

September 2, 2011

Last year I wrote about the annual Electrolux Design Lab contest in a post entitled Designing the Future. The design … Continued

Looking Ahead in Supply Chain Transportation

September 1, 2011

A year ago the folks at Supply Chain Digest reported the findings of "the State of the Freight Report from … Continued

Service-Oriented Architecture and Event-Driven Warehouse Management

August 31, 2011

One of the earliest blogs I posted was about service-oriented architecture (SOA) [Great Article on Service-Oriented Architecture]. I published it … Continued

Globalization, Trust, and the Supply Chain

August 30, 2011

Charles Mann, author of the new book 1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created, recently wrote an op-ed piece in … Continued

Black Swans, Dark Clouds, and Silver Linings

August 29, 2011

Russ Banham writes, "Thanks to the global financial meltdown, we now know what a 'black swan' is. But do we … Continued

The Holes in Globalization’s Fabric

August 26, 2011

Overall globalization has been a good thing for the world. Millions (if not billions) of people have emerged from poverty’s … Continued

Surmounting the Last Mile Challenge in Urban Areas, Part 2: Small and Clean Vehicles

August 25, 2011

Yesterday, I discussed a couple of pipe systems whose creators envision using to move freight underground to help relieve street … Continued

Surmounting the Last Mile Delivery Challenge is Urban Areas, Part 1: Pipe Dreams

August 24, 2011

Delivering goods to final destinations (i.e., the "last mile" challenge) remains problematic for freight haulers in many urban environments. Towns … Continued

Supply Chain Risks: Who’s in Charge and What are They Looking At?

August 23, 2011

Bill McBeath, chief research officer at ChainLink Research, has stated, “Most companies fail to take a holistic approach to supply … Continued

Entrepreneurs: Hares versus Tortoises

August 22, 2011

British entrepreneur Luke Johnson writes, “I used to think Mark Zuckerberg’s achievement with Facebook was a fabulous inspiration to entrepreneurs … Continued

Playing (and Working) Out of the Box

August 19, 2011

A year ago I posted a two-part series about a so-called "creativity crisis" in America. In Part 1 of the … Continued

IBM Recommends New Rules for Supply Chain Management

August 18, 2011

IBM analyst Karen Butner writes, “The complexities of today’s economic environment and ever-expanding global supply chains mandate new guidelines for … Continued

Reducing the Operating Costs of Truck Transportation

August 17, 2011

The cost of a gallon of diesel fuel remains high and it doesn't look like prices will be reduced dramatically … Continued

Global Hunger: The News is both Good and Bad

August 16, 2011

Unless you don't follow the news at all, you are aware that the Horn of Africa is once again struggling … Continued

The Future of Innovation Appears Secure

August 15, 2011

Sharon Daniels, chief executive of AchieveGlobal, claims that “continual innovation may be the most powerful of any competitive advantage for … Continued