TRADE WAR 01

As the U.S.-China trade conflict worsens, U.S. businesses need to consider their options.

– By Patrick Cadic

In early August, the U.S. announced the introduction of an additional 10% tariff on some $300 billion worth of Chinese products. This fresh round of tariffs, scheduled to take effect in two waves on Sept. 1 and Dec. 15, will center around consumer electronics and toys. Almost immediately after this announcement, Chinese officials responded by introducing tariffs on $75 billion of U.S. agricultural products, also scheduled to take effect in two waves on the same respective dates. 

These newly proposed tariffs, coupled with President Trump’s recent calls for a complete halt of U.S. business interests in China, have added a fresh wave of uncertainty for U.S. importers. If the latest measures all go into effect, $550 billion worth of Chinese products will be covered by U.S. tariffs. And given that 20% of the world’s manufacturing output is driven through China, the repercussions could be significant. 

The conflict has already driven many companies to shift away from their Chinese suppliers and invest millions of dollars to establish new supply routes through Southeast Asia. Other businesses are coping by charging higher prices to their customers to balance out their added expenses, stockpiling goods in the United States so that future tariff hikes won’t impact them, or altogether curbing production and reducing the scope of their operations to cut costs. But, with no clear end to the conflict in sight, what is the most prudent strategy for U.S. businesses to pursue? 

Evaluating the Primary Options for Dealing with Tariffs

When the China and U.S. conflict began, many businesses assumed they could eat the costs of tariffs for a short while until the two sides settled their differences. But as the conflict continues, this option becomes less and less feasible. Instead, businesses are increasingly looking for solutions that allow them to offset the added costs that tariffs have brought, or that enable them to avoid having to pay tariffs in the first place. 

The following three options are those most commonly being deployed by businesses today. 

Redirect supply routes through new countries – In the first quarter of 2019, as U.S. and China trade disputes continued to worsen, U.S. imports from Vietnam rose by 38%, from Taiwan by 22%, and from Korea by 17%. U.S. imports from China dropped 13% in the past year. Finding non-Chinese suppliers is what companies like Hasbro view as the most cost-effective option in the long run. In Hasbro’s case, the goal is to reduce China’s share of its manufacturing from 67% in 2018 to 50% in 2020, and rely on Indian and Vietnamese suppliers to pick up the slack. Capstone is taking a similar approach. This company believes it can manufacture its new smart mirrors in Thailand for the same cost as it did in China before tariffs were introduced.
Although establishing these new supply routes may save Hasbro and Capstone significantly in the long run, onboarding new suppliers can take years and cost millions of dollars in set-up and due diligence. Also, it’s important to understand that redirecting supply routes is not a strategy that can be easily reversed once trade conflict ends. It has required substantial planning and millions of dollars in investment for most firms to leave China, and it would be another massive undertaking for these firms to reverse course at the conflict’s conclusion. 

Increase the price that customers pay for finished goods – In May 2019, a group of 173 footwear companies (including Nike and Adidas) penned an open letter to President Trump detailing how additional tariff hikes would force them to increase the price of their shoes for U.S. consumers. “There should be no misunderstanding that U.S. consumers pay for tariffs on products that are imported,” the letter said. “It is an unavoidable fact that as prices go up at the border... the consumer pays more for the product.”
Of course, raising the price of its goods for customers is an obvious outcome of added costs being lumped onto U.S. businesses in the form of tariffs. However, businesses must be wary of increasing the prices of their products in a manner that makes it too expensive for their target clients, or allows competitors to enter the market at a lower price point and take away their market share. 

Stockpile goods in the U.S. so that future tariff hikes don’t impact costs – In the early days of the U.S -China conflict, a number of U.S. firms were quick to import additional inventory from their Chinese suppliers and stockpile goods domestically. Although this action resulted in additional warehousing and inventory carry costs, the idea was that these added storage costs would be far less than the costs associated with purchasing tariff-laden goods down the road. For many companies, this turned out to be a successful cost-saving venture.
In these circumstances, accessing flexible or on-demand warehousing models allows businesses to quickly inbound and store their goods from overseas without having to purchase additional warehouses or tie themselves into long-term contracts. Warehouse space can be added or reduced as needed, and businesses can maintain a large stock of inventory in the U.S. that is unimpacted by future tariff hikes. However, keep in mind that there will always be upfront costs associated with purchasing and storing additional inventory, and these costs aren’t guaranteed to be less than the costs of dealing with heightened tariffs. At the same time, overseas suppliers aren’t always able to handle sudden requests for increased output, so being able to quickly inbound inventory before tariffs go into effect may not even be possible in some scenarios. 

Patrick Cadic is vice president of sales and marketing at Ware2Go (a UPS company), where he is scaling a team designed to disrupt the traditional fulfillment industry. With a background of progressing the financial services industry with applied uses of artificial intelligence and Big Data, Cadic is bringing a new perspective to an industry in need of change.

MOBILE COMMUNICATIONS 01

Reliable Contact

Connection improvements can help increase productivity and collaboration in today’s global business world.

– By Urban Gillis

In recent years, there has been a fundamental shift in how we work. Business operations have gone global and offices spanning countries and continents require connectivity like never before. Workers in different locations have always needed to be able to seamlessly communicate with each other, but just as the world seems to get smaller with every passing year, the complexity of our need for connection grows.

A sharp increase in mobility amongst knowledge workers in call centers, contact centers and traditional office environments has created a need for constant connectivity and the ability to access information anytime, anywhere and from any device. 

However, the need for connectivity and mobility does not stop at the call center. Beyond traditional in-office work environments, there are workers in more industrial environments, such as warehouses, fleets and in the field, that also need a reliable form of communication to execute the core functions of their jobs. 

For example, a floor manager who works in a noisy warehouse needs to be able to answer calls from various locations without worrying about whether the person on the other end can hear what is being said. A fleet driver who spends a majority of time behind the wheel needs to be able to easily communicate with co-workers without taking attention off the road. These workers need to maintain productivity with the same ease as those working behind a desk.

Technologies such as push-to-talk and voice-control can help to bridge the gap making these workers safer and connected without compromising their ability to do their jobs effectively. Organizations with traditional office environments have embraced these mobile solutions for years, and it’s time for enterprise businesses to do the same. Here’s why. 

Productivity

From booming inventory demands, increased product diversification and rising customer expectations, warehouse and fleet workers are busier than ever. Productivity is critical to keep up with the fast pace. Many companies have turned to mobile technology solutions to mitigate the challenges of today’s complex landscape. Workers who say their employers use mobile technology well report being more productive, creative, satisfied and loyal. Those who describe their employers as mobile “pioneers” report 16 percent higher levels of productivity than workers who say their employer’s use of mobile is “bad.” 

For warehouse or fleet employees, this mobile technology often comes in the form of wireless headsets. These headsets can integrate with existing business software and devices – making use of technology already available to an organization. They are also customizable for one-touch access to the functions most important to your business. This purpose-built technology can help streamline processes and adopt new best practices that support today’s increasingly mobile workforce. 

Collaboration

It’s no secret that collaboration is key to efficient and effective operations for companies across the globe. In fact, 86 percent of executives blame workplace failures on a lack of collaboration and poor communication. A common solution for building collaboration in today’s workplace? Mobile technology.

Anyone working on the warehouse floor or as a fleet driver can’t always answer a call or communicate with teams in a traditional way. Mobile technology solutions facilitate conversation by allowing organizations to connect seamlessly – whether they’re in the front or back of the house.

Technologies like push-to-talk and voice-control put collaboration at the forefront by offering simple solutions to connect quickly. With these technologies, the wearer doesn’t have to choose between taking calls and everything else their job entails. 

Effective Communication

Communication is critical when it comes to driving efficiency among teams. However, a vital piece of that puzzle is the ability to communicate clearly with team members. This can be challenging in high-noise environments like warehouses, factories or on the road. In a recent study, 45 percent of workers cited noise levels as the biggest factor affecting their productivity. Noise-canceling mobile technology can help ensure teams can efficiently communicate, no matter how demanding the environment. By tuning out the inevitable loud noises in these environments, team members can send and receive critical communications. 

When it comes to those working in warehouses and fleets – communication is essential for operations and safety.. For example, today’s fleet drivers can face hefty fines due to strict hands-free technology regulations. Headsets with voice control allow hands-free operation that provides workers with the ability to talk safely and unhindered. 

Some work environments require employees to be constantly on the move in high-noise environments. With the help of new mobile technologies, organizations now may boost productivity, strengthen collaboration and provide uninterrupted communication to drive stronger results in daily operations. 

 

Urban Gillis is the head of BlueParrott, North America. He is responsible for channel sales for BlueParrott in North America.

 SUPPLY CHAIN LABELING 01

Labeled for Speed

Printing and Labeling help goods travel quicker and more
transparently through an ever-quickening supply chain.

By David Crist

 Rising consumer demands are ramping up pressure at every juncture of the supply chain. Goods must travel from the manufacturer, through the warehouse and across transportation and logistics channels in near-record times so they arrive at the retail store or e-commerce delivery end-point. It’s job No. 1 for supply chain professionals to ensure inventory gets in and out of warehouses as quickly as possible and that goods are tracked efficiently along the delivery route. Today’s demanding consumers won’t stand for anything less. 

Meeting this new normal in customer expectations requires increased agility and streamlined operations inside the warehouse as well as for drivers transporting shipments on the road. To meet the challenge, supply chain and logistics operators are increasingly turning to mobile printing and labeling solutions as a game-changer that is fueling supply chain productivity. As a result, they’re boosting customer satisfaction and the bottom line. 

These printers integrate seamlessly with a wide range of warehouse management systems, route accounting software, and other logistics and management solutions. The benefits delivered are powerful:

High levels of efficiency for last-mile delivery – With accurate labeling at every key supply chain step – including packing and shipping, picking, receiving and cross-docking – advanced printing and labeling technology makes it possible for workers at the factory or warehouse to literally jump inside trucks at inbound docks and start relabeling products for speedy last-mile delivery.

Transportation efficiency boosts customer satisfaction – Transportation or route drivers can quickly and easily update or amend orders in real-time and print new, accurate invoices to hand to customers on the spot. This fast, efficient approach saves time for busy customers and busy drivers alike, increasing satisfaction and loyalty across the board.

Better visibility across the supply chain – Labeling pallets, packages and products with barcodes or RFID tags so they can be tracked in real-time as they travel from the manufacturer to the warehouse to the customer delivers new levels of visibility within supply chain operations.

Agile Supply Chain – For Any Size Operation

Since barcode labels play essential roles in supply chain operations, making the most of advanced mobile printers or strategically located stationary printers can help small and medium-size businesses strengthen their competitive edge. There are a wide range of operational locations and processes where printing and labeling can make a difference: 

Receiving – Applying barcode or RFID labels as soon as inbound items arrive ensures they can be accurately unloaded, checked-in, put away or handled by automated applications.

Picking – Generating barcode or RFID labels for each item picked allows them to be scanned right in the packaging area, then quickly and easily sorted for shipment.

Packing and shipping – Creating new labels to identify finished goods is a vital task for workers who are kitting, completing light assembly or packaging items. In addition, ship-to-order applications can incorporate customer-specific labeling, scanning to fulfill orders and creating of accurate shipping labels. 

Cross-docking – Already mandatory in some food sectors, cross-docking is also gaining popularity for other time-sensitive merchandise. 

The Right Technology – In The Warehouse Or On The Road 

As with any technology, the best way transportation and logistics professionals can position their organizations for success is to invest wisely in the best equipment. Here are some criteria to keep top of mind when selecting mobile printing and labeling solutions:

Performance – It is mandatory to look for the optimum printer that can handle a variety of barcode and RFID packaging, shelf, shipping and other identifying labels quickly, clearly and easily. Enhanced print speeds of up to 5ips are becoming the new standard.

Versatility – Dual radio Wi-Fi and MFi Bluetooth connectivity ensures workers can always print easily from their iOS or Android devices, whether they’re in a vehicle, warehouse, facility or store – in a dense urban area or on a remote rural road. 

Durability – Printers need to be compact and lightweight enough for workers and drivers to wear or carry all shift long, yet rugged enough to withstand constant use by multiple workers in indoor, outdoor and in-vehicle environments that are often harsh. 

Ease-of-use – Printers should be out-of-the-box compatible with any mobile device, and easy to get up and running quickly. Features such as an active docking station, visible LCD display and flexible mounting options are also vital for no-hassle mounting or grab-and-go situations.

Reliability – Highly mobile drivers and workers need long-lasting battery life. Smart Li-ion batteries now available have double the capacity in half the size, as well as an indicator for battery status. Printers also need to work for the long haul, so it’s important to evaluate warranties and to look for blue chip service and support. 

Consider HaaS – Instead of owning devices, companies can take advantage of the OpEx model that eliminates the up-front capital investment, provides a predictable monthly price and ensures a simplified process for acquiring and updating future mobile print technologies and supplies.  

The Next Generation Is Now

Today, there a wide range of versatile, reliable next-generation printing and labeling solutions ideally suited to help supply chain keep pace with skyrocketing customer expectations. Whether it’s streamlining internal manufacturing or warehouse processes or supporting efficient logistics and route operations so drivers can transport goods to the right place at the right time – advanced, highly customizable and integrated solutions are at the ready to improve business performance and profitability. 

 

David Crist is president of Brother Mobile Solutions, a wholly owned subsidiary of Brother International Corporation, which provides innovative mobile printing and industrial labeling solutions to field workforces, mobile and supply chain enterprises.  

 

 GLOBAL PHARMACEUTICAL SHIPMENTS 01

Securing the global pharmaceutical supply chain requires increased oversight and sensor technology.
– By Jeff Newman

The demand for pharmaceuticals is booming in the United States, driven by a rapidly aging population and new enrollees under the Affordable Care Act. As the need for personalized medicine intensifies, manufacturers must rethink their approach to supply chain management. 

By 2023, the Drug Supply Chain Security Act will require that the industry implement end-to-end traceability. The purpose is to prevent quality issues and recalls by leveraging data that has been proactively organized throughout a product’s journey, rather than engaging in a lengthy and often costly effort to model the information backward in order to determine the root cause of failure. 

 This is easier said than done. While automation has allowed manufacturers to move away from batch technology to small unit production, they struggle with ensuring product consistency as units get broken down and handed off. Human intervention is costly and not easily scaled for global operations. For manufacturers to reap ROI on continuous models, they must implement tracking features that enable rapid-response decision-making. 

The first step to securing the global supply chain is tackling its weakest link - human error during the handoff process. Since many medicines have only a 48 to 72-hour window to get from one controlled environment to another, it’s critical to ensure shipment integrity - from the package to pill level. The need for oversight and tightly-controlled environmental conditions will increase over the next decade as large molecule treatments become significantly more popular than small-molecule treatments. These medications are typically fragile, have a short shelf life and often require specialized tracking.

The next step to ensure transparency and traceability is to tag shipments from point of pack to a customer’s door. Via smart tags and Bluetooth sensors, distributors can coordinate millions of items across multiple storage sites - easily expediting shipments or adjusting logistics to avoid theft, inadequate supply and tainted deliveries. Smart tags eliminate the need for line-of-sight identification and allow you to identify entire truckloads of product at a time. They are extremely difficult to counterfeit and can be easily integrated with your data management software of choice. You can also cut warehouse rental and maintenance costs by staging products at on-demand virtual cold storage units, airports and other shipping facilities to enable expedited delivery around-the-clock. 

To execute time-critical processes and decision-making, tagging and sensor tech must be integrated onto a secure command platform. For example, rapid alerts might trigger automated commands to dynamically reroute and repartition time-sensitive products. Due to a sudden policy change, medication may be unapproved overnight and left sitting on a tarmac too long to be shipped to its destination within a safe window of use. Within hours, it may be repackaged for sale for local consumers.

Over time, granular visibility across multi-modal shipping routes will enable you to proactively manage factors that may be affecting your bottom line on a seasonal basis. With automated reports and real-time alerts, operators will have greater bandwidth to focus on optimizing environmental conditions, rather than panicking about them. 

In addition to myriad business benefits, advanced sensors and tracking technologies enable manufacturers to better adapt to the evolving behavior and information needs of today’s physicians. Adherence (patients taking medication) is one of the biggest pain points in the pharmaceutical industry and can be easily addressed via programmable tags. Physicians can use tags to communicate dosage and usage instructions to consumers via their smartphone. They can also log interactions and reports in real time to illustrate how patients are interacting with surveys and marketing campaigns. Environmental and distribution data can be further leveraged to provide alerts to customers who may have acquired less-than-ideal products and monitor possible medication mismanagement down to the pill level.

Amidst the national opioid epidemic, sophisticated sensors and trackers ultimately streamline the supply chain to manage medications for millions of consumers. They protect against illegal tampering, the inclusion of foreign materials and can help track down entire truckloads of missing medications. At the pharmacy level, these technologies prevent mix-ups and over-prescription – significantly cutting down liabilities. 

Too often, manufacturers place greater emphasis on optimizing packaging rather than addressing environmental fluctuations and human errors. With advanced sensors and smart tags, data can be gathered down to the driver level, allowing you to gauge whether anomalies were caused by unforeseen circumstances or could be avoided with training and education. 

While advances in sensor tech and location tracking are enabling a safer global pharma supply chain, relationships are still key to their success. There is no technological substitute for clear communication and collaboration. From day-to-day sampling to data breaches and disaster response, technology must be fully integrated with internal policies to ensure smooth decision making. Develop proactive guidelines on the ideal as well as less than ideal scenarios, such as equipment malfunctions, natural disasters and other crises – and make sure that documentation is fully compliant with the latest regulations. 

Failure to communicate along the supply chain is a risk to your bottom line but, more critically, public safety. When a handful of suppliers are responsible for serving a region, a production snag can have far-reaching consequences. Take for example the intravenous saline shortage after Hurricane Maria. When U.S. suppliers do not have the inventory to serve the public’s needs, providers are forced to seek medications from countries where oversight is not as strong. 

As the on-demand pharmaceutical market grows, the need to ensure product integrity and an intact chain of custody will increase. Packaging alone cannot spot nonconforming elements and nefarious behavior. The solution? Sensor and communications technologies combined with cloud-based analytics. Diseases and natural disasters are not a one-time occurrence. To prepare the entire pharmaceutical ecosystem for the challenges of tomorrow, manufacturers must invest in the latest technologies today.

 

Jeff Newman, vice president of business development for CalAmp. Newman has over two decades of experience as an early pioneer within the M2M wireless industry.

 

 FLEET SAFETY CULTURE 01

Truck Safety

Coaching technique and transportation technology encourages safety at all levels.

– By Jason Palmer

 A top priority for any fleet manager is to protect their drivers and the motoring public. A strong safety culture is the key to success. While no one would question the importance of safety, it can be difficult to teach drivers new safety skills, effectively enforce existing policies and eliminate risky behaviors that have been engrained over many years of service. 

When launching a safety program, fleets must evaluate why such a program is needed and what specific driving skills are at the root of unsafe situations. Driver transparency and buy-in is the key to program success. By leveraging data-driven insights enabled by an advanced transportation intelligence platform and tapping into proven coaching techniques, managers can build a safety culture that empowers drivers to take ownership of their performance and transform their organization. 

Understanding Drivers: Make It Personal

One of the simplest ways to begin building a fleet safety program is to establish a personal relationship with every driver based on mutual respect. These relationships offer fleet managers an opportunity to listen and respond to driver concerns and questions. That creates trust that makes difficult safety conversations easier to navigate later on. 

When reorganizing an existing safety program, continued focus on personal relationships with drivers will ensure a smooth transition. Organizations can take a trickle-down approach by empowering managers through education of how new programs and technology will work – what they do and don’t do. Then, before new technology is installed in a truck, each driver must be educated on the technology’s capabilities and given an opportunity to ask questions. It is equally important to communicate how the program will be used by management and to explain under what situations the drivers will be coached, trained and evaluated. 

Fleets must also incorporate safety into everyday discussions and partner with drivers to collaborate on issues, showing that they value driver input and address safety before disciplinary action is necessary. Showing drivers you care and listening to their input serves as the foundation for successful coaching down the line. 

A Hands-on Approach To Coaching 

Coaching and driver training is a necessity in developing a culture of safety. It’s important that safety performance is frequently addressed and drivers receive prompt feedback after incidents. Thanks to recent innovation in transportation technology, managers are now alerted to incidents in real time through video-based safety and transportation intelligence platforms that record high-risk driving situations. These systems give supervisors the tools to provide the timely feedback to drive true change and make evaluation a regular part of the safety culture. 

Quality coaching can be the difference between an award-winning safety program and one overrun with reoccurring issues. The easiest way to curb unsafe behavior and improve overall performance is taking the time to sit down with drivers and review specific events with video- and data-backed evidence. Video-based safety offers a better understanding of what occurred in the lead-up to risky events and gives drivers a first-hand look at their own performance.

Consistency and fairness in evaluation is equally important to program success. No matter the manager, every driver deserves fair and comprehensive feedback. For managers with tens, hundreds or thousands of drivers under their supervision, an advanced transportation intelligence platform, coupled with a managed service, eliminates the need to review every incident. This feature enables coaches to focus on the important work of changing dangerous habits that lead to collisions. 

Tenured drivers often see risky behavior for the first time when viewing their own video. Like an athlete watching game footage, drivers will inevitably learn something about their reactions and behaviors by watching this footage. In these cases, video does some of the work of coaching itself, empowering drivers to take a step back and get involved in their own development.  

These days, innovative mobile applications offer drivers access to a self-coaching tool anywhere, anytime. Mobile tools enable drivers to monitor their own risky behaviors no matter where they are in relation to the home office, a necessary benefit considering the nature of many drivers’ travel schedules. 

By combining the vast amounts of data offered by sensor-driven technology with hands-on, regular feedback, managers and drivers can work together, truly elevating their conversations around safety performance, risky behaviors and organizational goals. Over time, these tools and coaching methods help drivers and fleet managers alike actively participate in improving an organization’s safety culture. 

Set Expectations and Reward: Measured Improvement

Measurement is always necessary for success. When building a culture of safety, fleets must set clear expectations for each driver and take the time to explain what factors impact their safety score and how they can improve. Technology empowers managers to understand their own program analytics and define the organization’s key performance indicators, but that information is only effective if it is regularly communicated to each driver. When drivers understand the organization’s goal and where they fit, they become active contributors to the solution and by developing a positive safety culture. 

Creating a positive fleet culture is not possible solely by focusing on discipline, but also by rewarding excellent performance. Video recordings and transportation intelligence are great tools that managers can use to recognize and reward the right behaviors. When fleet leadership shares clear expectations for their organization and goals for each driver, the data garnered from technology can highlight what drivers are doing right, as well as areas for improvement. When coupled with monetary and non-monetary recognition, drivers can be transformed into advocates for the organization’s safety policies. 

Focus on Continued Success

When an organization is meeting all its safety goals, it’s time to celebrate the team’s success and then raise the bar. At this point, fleet management needs to continue the hard work of coaching risky behaviors, while also encouraging friendly competition between drivers. It may be time to reevaluate program goals and see if there are any new issues the fleet may want to address. By leveraging technology and hands-on coaching, fleets can empower their drivers to build a strong safety culture and take ownership over their own driving behaviors. 

Ultimately, a strong safety culture, supported by the latest technology, will allow fleet managers to focus on protecting drivers and the motoring public – two keys to building and growing a successful business. 

 

Jason Palmer is the COO of SmartDrive Systems, a provider of video-based safety and transportation intelligence. As an expert in fleet safety and risk mitigation, Palmer helps fleets in a variety of industries to identify and eliminate the riskiest driving and operating skills that lead to collisions and jobsite incidents.

 

 NEXT GENERATION 01

Several factors will drive the next-generation warehouse, including demand for more visibility.

– By Matt Davidson

 Supply chain operations are largely based around when events are expected to happen in a controlled environment, with little or no ability to react in real-time to the millions of micro-disruptions that may occur. These daily disturbances, even as simple as delayed arrival of a shipment due to traffic, create billions of dollars of lost productivity every year in the supply chain. As the perception of supply chains shifts from a cost burden to a competitive differentiator, optimization and efficiency have become essential to success in today’s world focused on fast delivery. To support this transition, the importance of real-time data and analysis is rising rapidly.

 TOP 4 MISTAKES 02

Here are the top four mistakes companies can make when searching MRP/ERP software.

– By Karl Lauri

Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, sometimes called MRP when designed for and used in a manufacturing setting, can be complex and comes in a variety of sizes and flavors. Choosing the best solution is one that senior management wrestles with, especially within small and mid-sized companies, which are less likely to have the resources to tweak the software to their unique specifications. The payoff is too great for a growing number of companies to pass up. ERP (or MRP) offers the opportunity for information to be shared across departments company-wide, and to better manage the manufacturing and supply chain, allowing for more efficient and smarter operations.  

 APQC 02 copy

Here are ways that companies can build highly collaborative supplier relationships.

– By Marisa Brown

As supply chains become more complex and interconnected, procurement professionals will need to rethink the ways they build and manage supplier relationships. Organizations are increasingly dependent on suppliers to help reduce inefficiencies and excess cost, drive innovation, mitigate risk and maintain competitive advantage. With the advance of blockchain, e-procurement and automated transactions, the need for trust and transparency between buyers and suppliers is greater than ever. 

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