Deborah Austin Most manufacturers could reap positive outcomes by moving beyond typical information-sharing activities, says consulting firm Capital Consulting & Management Inc. (CCMI), Alexandria, Va. CCMI outlines three supply-chain collaboration activity stages:
Stage One: "Information Sharing" (50%-plus of companies are here) -- giving access and visibility to short-term information like order and shipping status.
Stage Two: "Coordinated Execution" (30% to 40% of companies) -- collaboratively reacting to supply/demand requirements; changing day-to-day activities to improve costs/service levels.
Stage Three: "Optimized Planning" (1% to 5%) -- joint decision-making to maximize performance, profitability, customer satisfaction; substantial business-practice changes. Boosting supply-chain performance is no longer an information-systems issue, says CCMI. Instead, companies must change historical practices to see full benefits of coordinated execution and optimized planning.