Supply Chain Optimization

Feb 18 VIP Roundtable: Supply Chain Optimization

FountainBlue’s February 18 VIP Roundtable was on the topic of ‘Supply Chain Optimization’, with opening remarks by Lam Research. Our executives in attendance represented a range of backgrounds, organizations and industries, but all are successfully navigating the supply chain challenges and opportunities to benefit their teams, products, organizations and customers. Below is a summary of their best practices for supply chain optimization:

Be Strategic

  • Provide a platform which would allow disparate corporate functions (such as manufacturing, operations, hardware and software development) to collaborate and proactively manage supply chain challenges.
  • Proactively manage the supply chain of the wide range of parts throughout the development, customization, integration life cycle.
  • Leverage technology such as AI to understand the current and future risks for your individual vendors, and consequently your own supply chain optimization needs for each of your product lines. 
  • Design foundational architectures which are modular, versatile, and dynamic, while also being easily integrated, easily replicated, and easily adjusted.
  • Upgrade or phase out outdated copy-cut/locked-and-loaded supply chain optimization strategies which served the needs of past products, past eras, past customers.
  • Consider working with simulators and models to plan-fully strategize on a range of supply chain needs.
  • Proactively manage and mitigate the risks around the supply chain flow, making vendor, process and people adjustments as needed. 
  • Work with business professions to ensure compliance with local, national and global part standards, especially around security, materials and quality. 
  • Practice AI-based hyper-automation optimization, enlisting the support of an ecosystem of internal and external stakeholders.

Manage Your Vendors

  • Map out all the individual parts needed for each of your product lines and adopt a multi-tier view for your vendors.
  • Diversify your vendor options, and ensure that your vendors represent the sustainability, diversity, and versatility requirements of increasing interest to partners and customers.

Customers First

  • Strategically plan for and proactively deliver to the needs of the customer, being as flexible and agile as possible to address their changing needs.
  • Manage your customer needs based on supply chain bottlenecks which are beyond your control.

Empower Your People

  • Respect the work-life integration needs of our people – supply chain optimization must be more plan-ful, less emergency-driven and less stress-inducing.
  • Build relationships of trust across ecosystems of vendors, partners, suppliers, customers. 

The bottom line is that leaders and managers at all levels must adopt collaborative, agile and flexible leadership and management standards which would 1) manage the risk, 2) maintain the security and functionality, 3) ensure the optimal amount of quality supplies and 4) ensure the people have a coordinated, informed view of the needs of the customer, and the ability to deliver to those needs. 


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