CSCMP's Supply Chain Quarterly
December 18, 2018
Forward Thinking

CSCMP publication looks at the current state of supply chain visibility

The latest issue of CSCMP Explores ... investigates what companies can do to improve visibility in their extended supply chain.

Today's supply chains are more dependent than ever on the timely flow of materials, services, and products among trading partners. But according to some studies, one in three companies experienced a material supply chain disruption in 2013. This suggests that while business leaders are able to see flows within their own companies, there are significant gaps in visibility between trading partners, which can create a barrier to commerce.

In the most recent issue of the publication CSCMP Explores..., the research firm Supply Chain Insights reports on a survey-based study (78 respondents) that it conducted to learn about the state of supply chain visibility. The report, "Supply Chain Visibility: A Missing Link in the Extended Supply Chain," outlines what companies can do to improve performance through increased visibility.

The study found that 30 percent of respondents outsourced 40 percent or more of their manufacturing and 55 percent outsource 40 percent or more of their logistics activities. Yet most companies were managing visibility of their extended supply chain through a combination of spreadsheets and electronic data interchange (EDI).

The study's authors argue that the extended supply chain is too important to be connected primarily with spreadsheets, faxes, and phone calls. It suggests that supply chain leaders need to develop a clear definition of supply chain visibility. They also need to identify the appropriate enabling solutions. In many cases, the report asserts, the best way forward is to implement business-to-business networks that allow one-to-many or many-to-many company interactions and enable data harmonization and synchronization.

The report is free to CSCMP members. Information on how to order the report can be found here.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you're not already logged in, you will be asked to log in or register.

Want more articles like this? Sign up for a free subscription to Supply Chain Executive Insight, a monthly e-newsletter that provides insights and commentary on supply chain trends and developments. Click here to subscribe.

We Want to Hear From You! We invite you to share your thoughts and opinions about this article by sending an e-mail to ?Subject=Letter to the Editor: Quarter : CSCMP publication looks at the current state of supply chain visibility"> . We will publish selected readers' comments in future issues of CSCMP's Supply Chain Quarterly. Correspondence may be edited for clarity or for length.

Want more articles like this? Subscribe to CSCMP's Supply Chain Quarterly.