About The Supply Chain Engineer

Supply chain management has figured prominently in organisational priorities since Keith Oliver in a reported conversation with a Philips manager, Mr. Van t’Hof, coined the term in the 1970’s, and it has become even more so at the onset of the 2020 coronavirus pandemic.  Supply chains are operational relationships made up of activities that transformContinue reading “About The Supply Chain Engineer”

Problems are Doorways to Opportunities

Since the start of 2021, semiconductor chips, which are used in cars, trucks, computers, and smart-phones, have been in short supply.  Supply has been so short that automotive companies have shut down assembly lines and consumer electronics corporations have delayed roll-outs of new products.  Bloomberg reported in its September 22, 2021 Supply Lines newsletter thatContinue reading “Problems are Doorways to Opportunities”

Solving the Supply Chain Mystery

I once met a regional sales manager of a large consumer good company at Davao City, the biggest city on the island of Mindanao, 978 kilometres (608 miles) south of Manila, Philippines.  As I was introduced, the RSM looked at me for a moment and smiled broadly. “You’re a supply chain consultant?” Before I couldContinue reading “Solving the Supply Chain Mystery”

The Path Towards Becoming a Supply Chain Expert Begins with Basic Competency

Sometimes identifying a problem is not in observing what’s going on; sometimes it’s noticing what’s not there. In my blog, “Where are the Supply Chain Experts?”, written last March 2020, I wrote there were no supply chain experts seen working side by side with business and government leaders in solving supply issues at the heightContinue reading “The Path Towards Becoming a Supply Chain Expert Begins with Basic Competency”

Appreciating the Value of Veteran Employees

When I was a young industrial engineer at the food production division of a multinational company, the accounting department asked me to find out why there was a large reported loss of refined coconut oil. They’re the ones we always look for when we need something.  I went to the production manager and he toldContinue reading “Appreciating the Value of Veteran Employees”

Just About Every Enterprise is a Supply Chain Enterprise

I and ten million people in Manila have the same problem every day.  Mobile phone reception—it’s lousy.  It would take several tries to call someone on my mobile phone and when I do, chances are the conversation would stop in the middle.  Poor cellular reception is a norm in the Philippines.  It’s just so hardContinue reading “Just About Every Enterprise is a Supply Chain Enterprise”

Why Shifting from the Month-End Surge to Delivery by Demand is Common Sense

“We just have to live with it,” the General Manager replied.  The GM was responding to my comment that month-end surges in sales orders were causing inefficiencies in the company’s logistics operations.  I was presenting an operations assessment report to a company that distributed name-brand computer printers and accessories.  One of the key observations fromContinue reading “Why Shifting from the Month-End Surge to Delivery by Demand is Common Sense”

Logistics Solutions Can Be Simple

A medium sized retailer of health food items imports products from abroad.  The retailer prides itself with a very well organised warehouse and a crew of workers that swiftly repack the imported products and send them to the retailer’s stores all over the country.  The retailer’s sales department, however, has constantly complained about lack ofContinue reading “Logistics Solutions Can Be Simple”

Six Elements to Find in a Digital Roadmap

A large producer of canned fruit items installed a brand-new radio-frequency identification (RFID) system at its manufacturing facility.  The RFID system aimed to streamline the producer’s inventory management system.  The canned fruit producer’s workers stuck RFID tags on every case of canned fruit and on the pallets where the cases were stacked.  As forklift operatorsContinue reading “Six Elements to Find in a Digital Roadmap”

Ten (10) Examples Towards Building Better Supply Chains

For years, experts have cited the urgent need for supply chains to adapt and get better.  In 2005, Paul Michelman via the Harvard Business Review wrote: “Threats to your supply chain, and therefore to your company, abound—natural disasters, accidents, and intentional disruptions—their likelihood and consequences heightened by long, global supply chains, ever-shrinking product lifecycles, andContinue reading “Ten (10) Examples Towards Building Better Supply Chains”