New rules for a new decade

A vision for smarter supply chain management

New guidelines to restore supply chain visibility and create enterprise value

To ascertain the depth to which today's uncertain environment impacts the global supply chain – what has been called the "lifeblood of economic and social progress" – the IBM Institute for Business Value surveyed 664 supply chain management executives in 29 countries around the world.

What we discovered is that global economic turmoil and uncertainty underlie the three most significant challenges supply chain management executives face today:

Overcoming the often-daunting obstacles that complexity and uncertainly introduce into the constant and seemingly relentless challenges of managing the supply chain will require three new rules:

1. Know the customer as well as yourself. Smooth volatility with predictive demand.
Predict demand and be in a position to react to demand variability with rapid response and allocation of all global resources.

2. See what others do not. Unveil visibility with collaborative insight.
Collaborate with visibility to events, with suppliers, service providers and customers in an open, action-oriented environment.

3. Exploit global efficiencies. Enhance value with dynamic optimization.
Optimize pipeline inventory, the global supply chain network and cost structures. Create cost-efficient sustainable products and practices while hedging risks with partners.

The top performers in our study – what we call Visionaries – are already embracing these rules and stand out in virtually every category we examined and measured.

Do you have what it takes to become a supply chain Visionary?  Download our complete IBM Institute for Business Value executive report to find out how your company measures up – and the steps you can take to create your own vision for smarter supply chain management.

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