Sunday, May 27, 2018


A feature of e-commerce is the reversal of roles. Customers own their sales; power has shifted. Retailers and manufacturers come to them via their websites.
Key for customers is meeting Customer Expectations--part of the Amazon Effect--is the perfect order that is delivered complete, accurate, and on-time. On-time is about the velocity of order delivery. Satisfying those expectations is driven by the New Supply Chain.
Being able to provide customers with the service they expect does not require being the size of Amazon. Rather, it is about having and providing the essentials of the New Supply Chain.
The essentials for the New Supply Chain that deliver e-commerce success with customer expectations are:
  • — End to end
  • — Velocity through the entire supply chain, especially for Inventory and Order Delivery
  • — —Warehouse Network Alignment
  • Merge or Dual Supply Chains
  • — Upstream Supply Chain
  • — Technology
  • — Integration
  • — — Process, both internal and external
  • — Metrics—
  • — And more
 Some things to remember for transforming your supply chain--
  • There is no quick, easy answer. Your current supply chain, with its design and operating issues, did not happen overnight. So, transforming will not happen overnight.
  • Avoid signs along the way that say e-fulfillment answers, last mile solutions and other optimistic terms.
  • Watch out with the "low cost"/cheap ideas, from both internal and external sources. They are part of the "easy answer" cadre of providers and programs that can take you down wrong paths.
  • Avoid "agile" which is code for trying to do more with your supply chain than it was designed to do.
How to start. Hint—remember it is about velocity.
  • —Evaluate where you are.  Assess / define / measure / identify gaps. For example, how well do you perform at delivering customer expectations? This will establish where you are and how you are doing.
  • Build for where you are going.
  • — Segment products / suppliers. Know what is important, why, and where.
  • — Use lean Value Stream Mapping, especially for the international supply chain
  • — Compress time
Remember, this is about your end-to-end supply chain. Not just logistics components in the supply chain. Stay focused.