Notable Highlights from Aberdeen Supply Chain Summit 2012

With over 200 registrants and a packed audience, the Aberdeen Supply Chain Summit held in Chicago last week was a huge success. The agenda was filled with leading practitioners eager to share stories about what is working – and what’s not – in their roles as global supply chain leaders. Daniel Turney, vice president of Global Operations at Kellogg Company kicked off the event with his keynote address on Holistic Supply Chain Management: Moving from Organizational Silosto an Optimized and Interconnected Chain, which set the stage for an engaging event.

One of the more notable sessions was by Brett Frankenberg, vice president of Supply Chain Planning and Inventory Management, Coca-Cola Bottling Company Consolidated, titled Get Connected to the Consumers, Stay Ahead of the Competition. A few takeaways include:

  • Labor planning and management: Real-time mobility solutions and dispatching via smartphones are new programs at Coke
  • Raise the bar: Shelf-level thinking is an opportunity to optimize cost and service
  • Frequency management: It is a huge challenge and requires dynamic supply chain at Coke
  • T&OP: Transportation and operations process at Coke addresses price of transportation and capacity concerns
  • Tools for displays, POS data and merchandising activity are under system/process reviews at Coke with a goal of enabling synchronized data exchange with supply chain partners.

Based on specific Twitter feeds and the overall Coke presentation, it is clear there is a tight connection to retail shelf sales, distributors and manufacturers, and profitable supply chain execution. For instance, the tremendous growth in lot sizes and the sheer volume of SKUs required for shelf-level delivery are compounded – hence frequency management is up and there is an opportunity to optimize cost and service. In addition to the amount of data sharing and collaboration with retailers and shelf-level, requirement has grown complicated, leading to the term T&OP (like S&OP but for Transportation and Ops Process). A tight synchronization between shelf level events and plans is clearly connecting the Coke supply chain (near real-time) to its retailers and allowing the company to be competitive. We heard similar takeaway in the consumer electronics industry in the day two presentation by Nick Delany, president of VTech Communications, Inc., speaking about customer-centric S&OP.

And JDA also presented…

Danny Halim, vice president of Industry Strategies for JDA Software, hosted the JDA Supply Chain Segmentation Round Table session. Highlights from the roundtable discussion included getting customer buy-in and setting expectations to successfully segment your supply chain. The key here is by applying segmentation, companies can get the upper hand by having the options to set their strategy for success – and balancing the tradeoffs of cost, service, customer and product.

Overall Summit Takeaways:

Transformational, not incremental change supports growth and success. From Dan Turney at Kellogg to Nick Delany at VTech, this takeaway was demonstrated to drive both excellence and company profitability. In addition to profitability, the competitive advantage that innovation and transformation provide was emphasized by Frankenberg at Coke. As one attendee said “Great program today. Good topics and discussion” #abgSCM2012 @CresaIndustrial.

All in all, the entire event was a huge success with a takeaway for every practitioner and supply chain segment. Be sure to check out Aberdeen’s summit page periodically by clicking here for posted speaker presentations and comments.

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