February 2018 | Commentary | Good Question

If you were given authority to purchase one product or service for your supply chain/logistics operations, with no budget restrictions, what would you buy?

Tags: Logistics, Supply Chain

A time machine!

Nick Williams
Key Supplier Manager
General Dynamics Land Systems

I would purchase a robust and mobile-enabled application that would allow any company in the world to place a purchase order and track it through every link in the global supply chain. While many applications today help support various silos within the supply chain, this technology would utilize the full power and mass availability of mobile phones, taking the supply chain to the next level.

Micah Holst
Marisol International, An Ascent Global Logistics Company

Artificial intelligence (AI) has sharpened the competitive edge by predicting inefficiencies across the supply chain. Investing in solutions powered by AI that can analyze spend and identify opportunities for cost reduction, is an intelligent move, irrespective of budget.

Andrew Nichols
Head of Procurement
Tungsten Network

We would purchase a robotic process automation (RPA) tool, hands down. While an RPA tool is a big upfront investment, the ROI has been proven and it's definitely on our radar for future system enhancements. When you're in a position of growth and your business's foundation is built, we see RPA as a terrific solution to maximize operational productivity.

Lindsey Graves
Chief Operating Officer
Sunset Transportation

A forecasting solution. You know what they say: The difference between Bigfoot and an accurate forecast is Bigfoot has been spotted a couple of times.

Robert Babak Izadpanah
MCN Business Analyst Nordics
IKEA Group

I'd buy technology products and software to digitize process and bring efficiency and accuracy, providing real-time information on shipment and record keeping for further audit and compliance. The ROI would be high, which could compare through cost-benefit analysis in the long run.

Shyam Singh
Commercial Dimension Data

A fully automated warehouse.

Alberto Hausmann
Supply Chain Manager
F.T. Industrial Supplies Ltd.


Nicholas Rutala
Operations Manager

What about OTM or LLamasoft for optimization and modeling or Alteryx for extreme data mining and modeling or maybe even Tableau for visualization. I am already using three of the four suggestions above daily and the last one is on the way. I'd like to know what others are doing to solve problems and create forward thinking solutions.

Eric Pyatt
Logistics Analytics & Solutions Center of Excellence
Ingersoll Rand

Drones maybe, as I believe our products (smaller ones, replacement parts) can be delivered via drones. Sky's the limit, isn't it?

Lily Mei Lee Ho Foertsch
IT Business Analyst
Schaeffler AP Holdings Singapore

IUID (item unique identification) and RFID (radio frequency identification) marking system to improve inventory, delivery, shipping, receiving.

Tracie Strack
Product/Product Manager, GSA
United States Army Veteran

Warehouse robots.

Alice W. Atieno
Customs Clearance Supervisor

Have a great answer to a good question?

Be sure to participate next month. We want to know:

Knowing what you know now about supply chain management, what advice would you give your younger self?

We'll publish some answers.

Tell us at editorial@inboundlogistics.com or tweet us @ILMagazine #ILgoodquestion

Visit Our Sponsors