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2016 Supply Chain Innovation Awards Presented by SupplyChainBrain and CSCMP

The more complex a company's supply chain, the more challenging it is to devise a sustainability program that ensures environmental protection from design and manufacturing to packaging and from product transportation to end-of-life disposal and recycling. A comprehensive plan that's truly innovative is called for.

2016 Supply Chain Innovation Awards Presented by SupplyChainBrain and CSCMP

INNOVATION OF THE YEAR: DELL INC.

Runner-Up:
Johnson & Johnson Supply Chain

Finalists:
Airbus, ROi, Destination Maternity, Emerson Healthcare

Most consumers know about Dell Inc.'s long history of making computers and related products for home and business, but few stop to think about just how long and complex the company's supply chain is. And if we do, we may not consider such things as packaging and end-of-life issues like reclaiming and recycling parts and materials where possible as part of that chain.

Dell did, and for its development of a truly end-to-end sustainability initiative covering its entire product portfolio it is the winner of this year's Supply Chain Innovation Award sponsored by SupplyChainBrain and the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals.

The company's 2020 Legacy of Good plan mandates increased environmental protection from design to manufacture and from product use to end of life. The Dell Supply Chain Sustainability Steering Committee was created and charged with meeting that goal. In turn, it created a framework that includes Design Thinking workshops, annual Innovation Olympics and an annual Packaging Innovation Summit.

The committee prioritizes projects and funnels ideas through the innovation framework. Among the benefits achieved: Dell became the first PC maker to employ in-mold rolled film and texture with complex geometry part design in an effort to reduce or even eliminate paint in its products. That project saved more than $53m in packaging costs and enabled a recycling system that allowed Dell to use 11.7 million pounds of recycled-content plastics in new products.

Dell’s innovative program extends to energy conservation, reduced water usage and elimination of landfill use wherever possible.

Meeting mandates to protect the pharmaceutical supply chain from counterfeit drugs is no easy task, but Johnson & Johnson Supply Chain has found a way to do so well before U.S. legislation kicks in and while reining in costs. Key to JJSC's efforts is use of adaptive software from DMLogic.

The aerospace supply chain is enormously complex because of the thousands of suppliers needed to build an airplane.  The challenge of coordinating those elements — Airbus has more than 7,800 around the world — is more demanding than ever.

To manage the quality and reliability of its partners, and to spot potential problems before they disrupt the supply chain, the company established a digital control room.

Years ago, ROi reinvented the supply chain of its founder, Mercy Health, a top 20 non-profit U.S. health system. ROi has grown from a supply chain department servicing only Mercy into an end-to-end supply chain solutions provider, servicing 100-plus hospitals in the U.S.

Destination Maternity, the world's largest designer and retailer of maternity apparel, wanted to revamp its warehouse and fulfillment systems to reflect the modern-day needs of omnichannel customers. A brand new, automated facility was the result because its facility was weighed down by outdated warehouse-control systems, inefficient processes and labor-intensive activities. Working with Invata Intralogistics was the solution.

Emerson Healthcare partnered with logistics service provider Geodis to level the playing field for its roster of small to medium-sized manufacturers of health, beauty, nutrition and over-the-counter brands to U.S. retailers. The program makes it possible for them to compete with big suppliers for space on retail shelves.

A hearty congratulations to Dell, Johnson & Johnson Supply Chain and to all the finalists in this year's competition.

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