Supply Chain Management Insight: Study Reveals Top Supply Chain Priorities

From Now to Next in Supply Chain Management

Business priorities change over time, and with ongoing technological innovation revolutionizing every step of the supply chain, supply chain management (SCM) leaders must stay at the top of their game to ensure their organizations keep pace.

What do supply chain professionals consider their top three priorities in 2017? According to a recent APQC survey of 86 SCM professionals in 19 industries, it’s a mix of the old and the new:

Priority #1: Quality.

It matters to all businesses, but it’s no surprise that quality is job number one in manufacturing. Of course, quality doesn’t start at the assembly line. From raw materials procurement all the way to packaging and logistics, there are many opportunities for inferior quality to creep in. To ensure that products meet specifications—and that customers stay satisfied—tight quality control is a must across the entire supply chain.

Priority #2: Performance management.

A hot topic among SCM senior managers across multiple business functions, performance management is about proactively taking control of processes, rather than simply reacting when something goes wrong. It starts with dissecting existing processes, seeking to remove redundant work and inefficiencies. To do it well, SCM leaders need information about how well their existing processes really work. And for that, they need…

Priority #3: Data and analytics.

In the SCM world, data isn’t the disruptor: It’s the analytics that are changing the performance game. Capturing performance data at every link of the supply chain gives organizations limitless opportunities to examine processes, pinpoint bottlenecks, identify risks, and make corrections to deliver better-quality products, faster.


To see what else is on the SCM agenda for 2017, read APQC’s summary report, “From Now to Next in Supply Chain.”

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