Analyst Insight: Given today's intensely competitive business environment, as well as consumers who are more informed and demanding than ever, it's imperative that companies develop customer-driven operations that create a distinctive experience through supply chain capabilities. Simply put, product/service features and pricing are no longer enough to meet customer expectations. And since customers in different segments often have very different needs, generic supply chain capabilities won't cut it. - Joseph S. Roussel; Global Operations Advisor, PwC; Brad Householder, Principal, PwC
Like many of their larger competitors, today's mid-market companies are beginning to focus on expanding their footprint. The economy is strengthening in a number of areas and based on recent indicators, confidence is increasing as well. One of the challenges, however, is that while the basic fundamentals of responsible business growth haven't changed, the landscape for technology and supply chain solutions has shifted remarkably since the manufacturing sector downturn in 2008-2009.
A European telecommunications company wanted to lower the cost of its customer service operations but worried about the potential loss of revenue from the cross-selling that its traditional call centers did so well. So-called e-care solved the problem.
Customers have been spoiled. Thanks to companies such as Amazon and Apple, they now expect every organization to deliver products and services swiftly, with a seamless user experience. Are your processes up to that level of expectation?
The majority of high-tech manufacturers are limited in utilizing their modern enterprise resource planning solutions and understanding how technology innovation can drive greater customer experience, according to a survey conducted by IDC Manufacturing Insights.
Canadian Tire will deploy at least 5,000 tablet devices to its core network of 490 stores beginning in May. The rollout follows fast on the debut of a digital content hub designed to improve both in-store and online shopping experiences at Canada's largest retailer.
Social media and its close relative, social CRM, allow you to connect with customers in new and meaningful ways, on a greater scale and at a greater velocity than ever before. When it's done right, that is.
Analyst Insight: Innovative and strategic supply chain segmentation is a key strategy for effective supply chain analysis, enabling greater responsiveness and the ability to focus resources. Competition requires a better identification of key supply chain segments, considering that 80 percent of results come from 20 percent of items. An additional factor adding complexity is that increasingly manufacturers are adding services as part of their offerings - termed "servitization." Effective segmentation is the key to managing these complexities. - Nada R. Sanders, Professor of Supply Chain Management and Iacocca Chair, Lehigh University
Analyst Insight: Retail has reached a number of crucial tipping points. The economy, online shopping, technology, store relevance and other factors are driving companies to the crossroads where business strategy meets the supply chain. Traditional thinking around customer satisfaction, distribution networks and operations is obsolete given the huge impact of these tipping points on all supply chains. Going beyond the crossroads means having the right business strategy and having the right supply chains. - Jim Tompkins, CEO & President, Tompkins International