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2016 Annual Conference takes an in-depth look at top supply chain trends

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An astronaut who spent a year in space, a digital technology guru from GE, and a drummer all hope to inspire attendees at the CSCMP Annual Conference in Orlando.

When it comes to supply chain education and networking opportunities, it's hard to beat CSCMP's Annual Conference. This year's conference in Orlando, Florida, USA, from September 25-28, will include 16 educational tracks, 90-plus sessions, exhibits from leading service and technology providers, and more than 25 hours of networking time. The event will also feature an educators' conference, an opportunity to volunteer for the "Stop Hunger Now" program, a "Women at Work" discussion, CSCMP's annual Roundtable and business meetings, a Young Professionals event, and the popular Student Recruitment Day.

Sessions at the 2016 conference will investigate some of the top issues and trends currently facing today's supply chain managers, such as the importance of supply chain management in the C-suite, omnichannel proliferation, big data, "smart" machines and visualization, the talent gap, and Millennials in the workforce. Education tracks will explore topics as diverse as demand planning, manufacturing and service operations, supply chain leadership, transportation and logistics, and current research and surveys.

With so much thought leadership on offer, it's no surprise that the event attracts senior-level supply chain executives from around the world. The 2015 conference, for example, drew attendees from 39 countries, 74 percent of whom held director-level or higher positions.

CSCMP has lined up a unique set of general-session speakers who will inspire attendees to think about their careers and organizations in new ways.

The conference will kick off with an address by Captain Scott Kelly, an astronaut and retired U.S. Navy captain. Kelly has just returned from spending a year in space on board the International Space Station with cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko. While Kelly and Kornienko conducted experiments in space, Kelly's identical twin, Mark—a retired astronaut—stayed home on Earth. Now scientists are using the two to study the effects on the human body of living in space. Kelly will provide advice on pushing one's limits as well insights into the leadership and teamwork required to respond to demanding conditions.

The following day, Seth Bodnar, chief digital officer for GE Transportation, will provide a perspective that is a little closer to home. Bodnar will talk about how machines, data, insights, and people can together create real-time connectivity and data intelligence. GE Transportation is making the transition into the digital era with such innovations as its "smart" locomotive, which is equipped with over 200 sensors processing more than a billion instructions per second.

Lastly, Mark Schulman will close out the conference with a look at how habits and practices used by great musical performers can be translated into the corporate world. Schulman is a world-renowned drummer who has performed with the likes of Pink, Beyoncé, Cher, Billy Idol, Foreigner, and Sheryl Crow, to name just a few.

More information can be found at the conference home page.

Updated on June 24, 2016.

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