B2B Trending Conversations: Supply Chain and Procurement

36 Shares 36 Flares ×

Welcome back to another edition of B2B Conversations, our weekly roundup of what’s trending in the B2B social media space. We collect all the most buzzworthy tweets and posts so you can focus on growing your B2B enterprise enriched by these curated insights from industry executives and thought leaders. B2B News Network uses Nexalogy to help identify the most relevant and popular posts to include in this report. This week, we zero in on supply chain management and procurement, with posts on maximizing data leverage, supply chain visibility, the rise of Millennials and more.

Trending Topics

Procurement and analytics

While leveraging data and analytics is mission critical to optimizing your procurement performance, AmeriQuest Business Services VP Mike Rowbotham argues that instead of waiting for the perfect system, procurement specialists should use the data they can accumulate to make decisions.

“When it comes to procurement, it’s important to start with the data that you have,” advises supply chain management professor Robert Handfield. “And when it comes to predictive analytics, even starting small about where you are today and what your goals are for a specific future is helpful enough to get started.”

Rowbotham urges procurement pros to “simply start with whatever data [they] have to show stakeholders something that will get their attention” while keeping an eye toward building a more robust analytics platform.

Supply chain visibility

What’s the fastest-growing supply chain market? According to a recent ARC Advisory Group study cited by Forbes contributor Steve Banker, it’s supply chain and visibility, and B2B network solutions are the main driver of this growth. Good visibility is absolutely essential for tight orchestration of end-to-end supply chain from suppliers to customers, and by studying the product set and visibility roadmaps of industry leaders like SAP and Oracle, B2B specialists can better plan their own winning supply chain strategies.

Digital supply chain

Supply chain expert Bruce Jacquemard cites a recent report from Boston Consulting Group illustrating the urgent need for companies to transition to a digital supply chain. Although lamenting that the digital supply chain has failed to deliver on its full potential, Jacquemard writes that recent technological developments are changing all that, and companies that adopt technology and strategies that fix performance gaps, innovate business processes and disrupt the supply chain are reaping impressive rewards.

“Digital supply chain management has matured and is generating substantial value,” the BCG report states, adding a warning that “organizations need to move quickly to apply the highest priority opportunities to their business and industry context, and they must find the right mix of fixing performance gaps, innovating business processes, and disrupting the supply chain…. Companies cannot afford to wait.”

Millennials and the supply chain

As Millennials now outnumber Generation X and Baby Boomers in the workforce, they are reshaping the economy as we know it, and businesses are scrambling to reassess how they buy and sell to accommodate this powerful purchasing cohort. This applies as much to the B2B space as to B2C; according to a recent survey, 46 percent of B2B buyers were Millennials—and that figure is steadily rising. Naturally averse to the constant bombardment of traditional advertising, Millennials prefer word-of-mouth recommendations or joining communities around favored brands. Incentives, loyalty rewards, discounts and personal communications work better than traditional ad campaigns, especially when coupled with cutting-edge technologies.

Purchasing strategies

Purchasing & Procurement Center shares the six core purchasing strategies that most procurement professionals employ in order to make more cost effective decisions. These include realizing procurement savings by utilizing centralized purchasing, optimizing supplier options by choosing a mix of vendors, implementing Total Quality Methods (TQM), sourcing globally, cultivating vendor development and focusing on risk management. Green purchasing is also gaining in importance as the Earth faces the existential threat of manmade climate change.

In case you happened to miss last weeks edition of B2B Conversations, which focused on Big Data, head here to check it out. As always, if you have any B2B content we think we should share next week, let us know via @b2bnewsnetwork. We love hearing from you!

Image credit Jon Evans

36 Shares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Google+ 0 LinkedIn 36 Email -- 36 Flares ×
The following two tabs change content below.
Brett Wilkins

Brett Wilkins

Brett Wilkins is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for U.S. news. Based in San Francisco, he is the editor and publisher of Moral Low Ground and is a Yahoo! Featured Political Contributor.