Spy Anti-Photography App

Is it technologically possible, using today's technology, to make a phone app that renders a spy nearly impossible to photograph with another smartphone in a public place?

Assume the spy has with him nothing but a standard smartphone and normal clothing. He isn't doing anything special to disguise his face. All the work is done by the app on a normal smartphone, interacting with the cloud, of course.

Can it work? Think about it for a minute before I give you a solution.… READ MORE

Internal Assessments Best Practices in QMS

By Mary McAtee
iPads on the Shop Floor Internal Assessments Best Practices in QMS

Old School Basics Utilizing High Tech Tools

I would have to say that one of my favorite Quality activities is performing audits and training auditors.

Properly trained and managed your audit program for both internal and Supply Chain, can provide a wealth of information concerning the health and effectiveness of both your and your Supplier’s Quality Management System.

Much of what I planned on sharing is simple common sense but I am always surprised by how uncommon common sense appears to be.… READ MORE

Supplier Risk is Changing the Role of the Chief Procurement Officer

By Edith Simchi-Levi
Executive Coaching Leadership Graphic 1 Supplier Risk is Changing the Role of the Chief Procurement Officer

The article, “Companies are looking more towards their Chief Procurement Officers for a supply chain revolution” caught my attention as it summarizes succinctly what is now becoming a more important role and significant transformation in the way companies are managing their suppliers and their supply chain.

Traditionally, the role of the Chief Procurement Officer (CPO) has been a secondary one compared to others in top management. It was mostly limited to negotiating good deals and tracking supplier performance.… READ MORE

Too Much or Too Little Inventory?

By Gregory Hartunian

Do you know which items have too much or too little inventory? What if you knew? How would you go about cutting overstocks while still ensuring a competitive service level? Would you be able to reduce stockouts without incurring a prohibitively expensive inventory increase? How would these changes impact service levels, costs and turns—for individual items, groups of items and overall?

Most companies know they have too much or too little inventory but lack a key ingredient for optimizing inventory: Service Level-Driven Demand Planning.… READ MORE

The New Normal and the New Neutral

By Jeff Speakes

The “New Normal” is a phrase coined a few years ago by the Pacific Investment Management Company (PIMCO), or at least that’s what they claim. It referred to a lengthy period of slow economic growth that they expected to persist as people recovered from the financial crisis. In view of the very modest economic growth that has occurred over the past five years (since the recession formally ended in 2009), the PIMCO forecast has worked out pretty well.… READ MORE

Patience is a Virtue, Especially When Implementing an Integrated Business Planning (IBP)/ Executive S&OP Process

By Craig McLaughlin
share save 256 24 Patience is a Virtue, Especially When Implementing an Integrated Business Planning (IBP)/ Executive S&OP Process

Back in early 2013, when I moved into my current role of leading the global Integrated Business Planning (IBP)/ S&OP program for Mondelez, I came into the job from a Business Unit operations leadership role.

As any of you operational folks will relate to, getting “stuff” done “now” is what keeps the lights on, but moving into a global job takes some adjusting because in our case, my focus shifted from decision making to decision influencing. A frustrating shift if you aren’t ready for the change.… READ MORE

The Illusion of Intelligence

Maybe the reason that scientists are having a hard time creating artificial intelligence is because human intelligence is an illusion. You can't duplicate something that doesn't exist in the first place. I'm not saying that as a joke. Most of what we regard as human intelligence is an illusion.

I will hedge my claim a little bit and say human intelligence is mostly an illusion because math skills are real, for example. But a computer can do math. Language skills are real too, but a computer can understand words and sentence structure.… READ MORE

Joining Forces for the Third Act

By Lora Cecere
shutterstock 1788296 300x202 Joining Forces for the Third Act

“I read your blog, and was struck by some of your comments on Forbes,” stated the email. “Could we arrange a call?”

“Sure,” I said, and the call was quickly arranged.

As I answered the phone, I heard the voice of an aggressive investor in supply chain technology software. He seemed very certain in an uncertain market. I scratched my head because I question how anyone can be this “sure.” Since more and more equity groups are reading this blog, and sending me questions, this post is for them.… READ MORE

Managing Inventory in Our Daily Lives

By Tim Kachur
grocerystorepic Managing Inventory in Our Daily Lives

Supply chain professionals see the world through a different lens than most. Where others see products on the shelf, we think of the containers on a ship, or trailer hauling down the highway full of that product and the possible shipping lanes and utilization.

When we see deliveries to our local store or restaurant, many of us think of the replenishment process, delivery routing and if it was a “milk run.”

When our e-commerce parcel is delivered, we think about the strategic decision on where to place a fulfillment center and the inventory optimization made to improve service levels.… READ MORE

Writing Tip of the Day

If you can write down what you are thinking, that's the only skill you need to become a professional writer. (Editors can fix your grammar and spelling.)

But writing what you are thinking is much harder than it sounds.

An amateur writer usually writes what he imagines other people think, or what other people have already written, or what other people might expect to be written. It is surprisingly difficult to capture your own thoughts in prose. And that means vast amounts of knowledge and creativity are stranded in skulls all over the world.… READ MORE

Collaborative Planning Forecasting & Replenishment (CPFR) and the Extended Supply Chain

By Cedrick Laporte-Roy
share save 256 24 Collaborative Planning Forecasting & Replenishment (CPFR) and the Extended Supply Chain

Has your organization been struggling to deliver a consistent fill rate to your client or service level to your client’s customers? Has it been challenging for your company to keep decent inventory coverage or maintaining satisfying forecast accuracy? If you answered yes to one of these questions, it might be time for your corporation to rethink some aspects of your supply chain.

In today’s competitive market, it is more and more difficult (if not almost impossible) to gain efficiencies and improve demand response for companies working in silos.… READ MORE

Supply Chain Analytics in Mergers & Acquisitions

By Sumeet Mahajan
M&A3 copy Supply Chain Analytics in Mergers & Acquisitions

Just within the first quarter of 2014, U.S companies registered $299.6bn in mergers and acquisitions; the highest Q1 by value since the pre-crisis level. Even globally, the M&A activity has been at fever pitch with a 39% increase in deal value, from $449.7bn in Q1 2013 to $625.4bn in Q1 2014 as noted here.

This week alone two mega-deals were announced: AbbVie announced it is buying Shire for $54B and R.J Reynolds Tobacco Company announced that it will buy rival Lorillard for $27B.… READ MORE