Complex global supply chains require specialists to run software applications for advanced planning, forecasting, and finance. But many companies are having a hard time finding employees who are experts in those areas.
Jan Fransoo, a professor of operations management and logistics at Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands, thinks there is a solution to that problem. In a presentation at the CSCMP Europe 2010 Conference, he suggested that the creation of "cross-chain control centers," where companies could share technological expertise, would allow participants to get the greatest benefit from today's supply chain software. This type of arrangement might prove particularly useful in helping smaller companies access advanced tools and knowledge.
A pilot program to create such a center will soon be under way. The Dutch Institute for Advanced Logistics (DinaLog) has requested proposals to develop a cross-chain control center that would be involved in such supply chain planning activities as matching supply and demand, transport utilization, and intercompany collaboration.