Is your supply chain over-served?

At the recent Stifel Transportation and Logistics Conference, I moderated a panel discussion that included representatives from Wal-Mart, Dell, Under Armour and Clorox. One topic they covered that I found especially interesting was that some companies were entertaining the idea of slowing down their supply chain. Why would they do that?

By ·

At the recent Stifel Transportation and Logistics Conference, I moderated a panel discussion that included representatives from Wal-Mart, Dell, Under Armour and Clorox. One topic they covered that I found especially interesting was that some companies were entertaining the idea of slowing down their supply chain. Why would they do that?

First, decisions affecting logistics and supply chain costs are increasingly being made “up the food chain” at the C-Level. Executives looking at the bottom line are always interesting in cutting costs, but only recently have many started to look at new ways to save when it comes to their transportation spend. Additionally, companies are starting to look at whether the customer service they are offering in terms of supply chain speed is actually paying dividends.

For example, the Dell representative highlighted the savings associated with their decision to slow down its Supply Chain from 58 hours to seven days. With Dell’s (some would say) legendary dedication to speed and customization, that was a big change. But as Dell incorporates/combines a “made to stock” with their traditional “made to order” model, they are changing their supply chain.

Given the significance of this change, I asked how long it took Dell to make this decision? The answer: Two weeks. Afterwards, the individual from Dell told me with the slim margins in the PC/Tablet/Electronics industry, the savings associated with slowing down their supply chain are vitally important in Dell’s ability to compete.

It was interesting to note that the other shippers on the panel had their own stories about what their companies were doing to manage their costs. Whether it’s looking at packaging, sourcing from Asia, or working with carrier to address inefficiencies, it was obvious that when it comes to managing and reducing logistics and supply chain costs, everything is on the table.

One of the reason, I find these conference so valuable is because you can get a wealth of valuable information in a couple of days. You can hear from the top executives and learn what they are doing and how it will affect your operations. And that’s why I’d like to challenge you to attend NASSTRAC’s annual meeting in Orlando Florida on April 13-16, 2014. They have put together an outstanding education and networking event and in three short days, you’ll get more useful information than you can imagine. You can learn more by going to NASSTRAC.org.

 


About the Author

Mike Regan
Mike helped grow TranzAct Technologies to become one of the largest privately held logistics information and freight audit and payment companies in the United States. He is extremely active in and participates on numerous boards of industry specific organizations and is a highly sought after speaker for transportation related topics across the country.

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Lead your organization through the driver shortage and over-the-road regulations.
Potential transportation disruptions are looming as increased over-the-road regulations are set to go into effect in 2017. Experts believe these regulations will further impact the already challenged driver pool as well as reduce driver productivity.
Download Today!
From the January 2017 Issue
Following LM tradition, we start off the New Year with our annual “Rate Outlook” cover story and subsequent Webcast
Moore on Pricing: The other TMS functional options
2017 Rate Outlook: Where are freight transportation rates headed?
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
2017 Rate Outlook: Where are freight transportation rates headed?
Join our panel of top oil and transportation analysts for an exclusive look at where rates are headed and the issues driving those rate increases over the coming year.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
2017 Rate Outlook: Will the pieces fall into place?
Trade and transport analysts see a turnaround in last year’s negative market outlook, but as...
Logistics Management’s Top Logistics News Stories 2016
From mergers and acquisitions to regulation changes, Logistics Management has compiled the most...

Making the TMS Decision: Ariens Finds Just the Right Fit
The third time is the charm for this U.S. manufacturer on the hunt for a third-party logistics (3PL)...
Motor Carrier Regulations Update: Caught in a Trap
The fed is hitting truckers with a barrage of costly regulations in an era of scant profits....