NASA on Tuesday awarded a pair of much-anticipated contracts, worth up to $6.8bn combined, to ferry astronauts to the International Space Station to Boeing and SpaceX in a deal that would allow the U.S. to launch astronauts into space from U.S. soil for the first time in years.
Lack of planning and tracking of inventory, poor communications among company divisions, and underutilized or non-existent technology are among the core elements holding back manufacturers, educational and medical institutions, life sciences companies, food processors, automotive makers and facility maintenance companies from achieving world-class MRO operations, according to a recent survey completed by Storeroom Solutions Inc.
Companies are looking more towards chief purchasing officers to help them understand supply chain risks, while firms which are collaborating and sharing information about their suppliers are reducing the cost of due diligence for themselves and making their business more competitive.
The global supply chain management and procurement software market grew 7.3 percent to $8.9bn last year, with small vendors combined significantly outpacing the overall industry growth rate, according to Gartner. Supply chain investments remained a high priority even as IT budget decision makers continued to exercise caution.
A shift is underway for distributors of industrial supplies and the e-commerce experience they provide to their customers. In 2013, more than 63 percent of industrial supply buyers said they made purchases online, with half of those purchasers spending at least 50 percent of their annual budget with suppliers who have an e-commerce platform.
Some authors have suggested that strategic sourcing is often done in a win-lose style, without true collaboration between buyer and seller. Nothing could be further from the truth, as a win-lose relationship is the antithesis to strategic sourcing done the right way. Strategic sourcing, done right, can become a real competitive advantage.
A report from IDC Manufacturing Insights evaluates the progression of commerce networks for manufacturers from traditional point-to-point communications to collaborative commerce networks that support many-to-many interactions among manufacturers and their trading partners.