Supply Market Intelligence:  Think Differently, Gain an Edge

Supply market intelligence (SMI) is a proven approach to reducing risk and gaining a competitive advantage. It begins with the collection and analysis of market data—but doesn’t stop there. The leaders excel at engaging key stakeholders in the SMI process and then disseminating the information in a way that leads to better business decisions. It’s a new way of thinking that can pay big benefits.
image
By Robert Handfield
November 01, 2010 - SCMR Editorial
Download Article PDF

Facing increased uncertainty in economic markets, organizations are increasingly aware of the need to closely monitor market conditions and respond appropriately through improved supply chain strategies.  As more organizations seek to build sourcing strategies that capture cost savings opportunities, they are finding major shortfalls in the market intelligence and cost modeling capabilities that form the basis for effective strategies and negotiation. Further, they are discovering that the needed integration of market intelligence into operational decisions, including budgets, profit objectives, market pricing, technology insights, global expansion is generally not well executed.

The result is misalignment between demand and supply planning, and major gaps in operational performance and risk mitigation.  To address this situation, organizations need to develop deep market intelligence, that will provide insights into core elements of market trends, commodity pricing, global capacity, government and regulatory changes that could impact global sourcing. They also need insight into economic trends that will impact their organization’s supply chain.  Unfortunately, these capabilities seem to be lacking in most organizations, based on the results of a study we recently conducted among supply management executives. Our research is based on interviews with subject matter experts in a number of industries who have deployed or are in the process of deploying centers of excellence for supply market intelligence. In addition, we surveyed 89 global supply chain executives through the International Association of Commercial and Contract Management (IACCM).

This article explores the concept of supply market intelligence (SMI).  We describe how companies are structuring their supply management organizations to optimally collect market data, identify best practices for synthesizing and deploying this information, and establishing metrics for measuring outcomes of SMI.  Further, we discuss how some leaders are now beginning to extend the application of SMI to other strategic business decisions that lie outside the realm of contracting and category analysis—an activity that is positively impacting decisions in annual budgeting, customer markets, technology integration, and financial budgeting.  We believe that the innovative application of SMI to these areas, though still in a nascent stage, will enable many organizations to achieve superior market performance and outcomes.

SUBSCRIBERS: Click here to download PDF of the full article.


About the Author

Robert Handfield

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!

Recent Entries

UPS today announced diluted earnings per share of $1.32 for the third quarter 2014, a 13.8% improvement over the prior year period. Operating profit increased 8.3%, resulting from balanced growth across all three segments.

The Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) reported this week that U.S. trade with its North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners Canada and Mexico increased 4.4 percent from August 2013 to August 2014 at $100.6 billion.

As expected, global trade dipped from August to September but still saw annual gains, according to data issued this week by Panjiva, an online search engine with detailed information on global suppliers and manufacturers.

Transportation and logistics merger and acquisition (M&A) activity in the third quarter saw annual gains, which were driven by smaller deals in the trucking logistics, shipping, and passenger air sectors, according to data issued in the Intersections report by PwC this week.

With the holidays rapidly approaching, it appears retailers are not quite done getting inventory set up and on the shelves in time for what is expected to be a fairly active shopping season. That much was evident based on recent data for September volumes issued by the Port of Los Angeles (POLA) and the Port of Long Beach (POLB).

Comments

Post a comment
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.