Supply chain thinking at the leading edge

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Some of the most sophisticated supply chain thinking has been developed in the hi-tech industries so it should be no surprise that the last two overall winners of European Supply Chain Excellence Awards have come from the Hi Tech, Communications & Electronics category.

The hunt is now on for the top supply chains in Automotive, Aerospace & Industrial – companies that can challenge for the crown in the 2010.

The Awards, organised by Supply Chain Standard in partnership with consultancy PRTM, are the gold standard for supply chain operations in Europe attracting entries from the world’s leading manufacturers, retailers and supply chain specialists.

Last year, it was Telefónica O2 UK’s complete redesign of its supply chain, on a global basis and across all businesses – involving people and processes in both forward and reverse supply chains – that just blew the judges away. “This supply chain transformation is leading the way in the Comms space, with its emphasis on customer service,” said the judges. By proactively managing the product portfolio and the end-to-end customer experience, Telefónica has reduced the cost of returns to the business, decreasing the average monthly cost by 16 per cent YTD 2009 versus 2008.

The year before the winner was Nokia Siemens Networks. “NSN’s supply chain is really futuristic, it’s driving and enabling the strategy of the whole company,” said the judges. NSN’s aim has been to create revenue streams from operating the product for the customer or by providing service contracts, thus refocusing the supply chain around efficient means of installing, commissioning and servicing.

I am sure that there are companies that can top these achievements, but it is going to take supply chain thinking right at the leading edge.

What makes the Awards unique is a stringent judging process which focuses on performance against five core disciplines of supply chain.

The awards are presented at a glittering dinner at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel before an audience of more than 450 industry leaders. This year the dinner will take place on Thursday 18th November.

The deadline for entries is Friday, 4th June 2010. To find out more and download an entry form, visit the Awards web site:

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