What supply chain insight would you share with your younger self?

Supply chains are more straightforward than they appear. All the acronyms and industry-specific terms seem confusing, but they’re all in service of moving things from origin to destination.

—Ethan Frisch
Burlap and Barrel

Take emotion out of your decision making and always be forward thinking with your long-term strategic plan in mind. Take care of the now, but never allow it to jeopardize your long-term strategic plan, and always do what is right for the business and not what is easy to do or to achieve a quick win.

—Dan Paget
Sr. Manager, Global Logistics
Columbia Sportswear Company

Supply chain is a combination of management with engineering. It’s about designing global networks so that materials, information, and money can flow efficiently. And then managing the people, processes, and technologies in these systems to create the most value for your customers, and for your company.

—Daniel Stanton
Author, Supply Chain Management for Dummies

Be more proactive about creating and organizing a data-driven supply chain. While there is always a cost, investment in new technologies that lay a foundation of digital data will only increase in value over time.

—John McPherson
Director, Global Solutions

Remember it’s a people business. It is a dynamic environment and requires skills related to building relationships, understanding technology, high-level execution, problem solving, strong attention to detail, and having a drive to always improve. Stay curious and seek to understand the complexity of supply chain, and don’t be afraid to challenge the status quo.

—Dave Reiss
SVP, Strategic Partners
Arrive Logistics

Eliminate the silos. A chain should be coupled links that are connected to make a strong entity but that fails to exist in 2020. Use technology to create the links that are needed to enable connectivity.

—Justin Bailie
Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer, Rose Rocket

Benchmark transportation rates. It’s a best practice to occasionally contact providers outside the usual pool to request quotes on high-volume lanes, and there are third-party firms that can compare rates with the market and companies of similar size and spend.

—Richard Singh
Business Development Analyst
Allyn International

Have a great answer to a good question?

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

Is supply chain visibility improving? What’s one blind spot shippers should address ASAP?

We’ll publish some answers. Tell us at [email protected] or tweet us: @ILMagazine #ILgoodquestion