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The Supply Chain Management Blog covers the latest in SCM strategy, technology, and innovation.

  • December 6, 2017

A Demand-Driven and Visible Supply Chain- Insights from the New England Joint Oracle User Group Meeting

Donna Lee
Product Marketing Analyst

More than 450 supply chain professionals gathered at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts on November 16th 2017 for the New England Joint Oracle User Group Conference.

This year’s conference, themed “Optimize Oracle On-Premise Solutions with an Eye to the Cloud” focused on new technologies and the various “paths to the cloud.” With 44 vendors and a record number of current and potential customers, the event was an action-packed day of insight and networking.

SCM Breakouts included sessions around-

- Cloud Procurement: Integrating to Oracle ERP and How Clients Gained Fastest ROI
- Oracle’s Maintenance Cloud
- Climbing the SCM Maturity Curve: how Successful Supply Chains are Driving New Technologies into their Operations
- Supplier Collaboration Best Practices: We Have Been Doing IT Wrong?
- R13 Sales and Operation Planning in the Cloud- Designed for Coexistence with On-Premise ERP
- How to Enhance You OTC Processes with Oracle Order Management Cloud
- Driving Tomorrow’s Supply Chain Transformation: Customer Experience Panel

Attendees had a chance to learn about new releases and demo products such as Oracle’s Maintenance, Order Management, and Procurement Cloud. Sessions were led by product managers, Oracle partners, and solutions consultants, who constantly reaffirmed supply chain’s unique position in the cloud space today, due to its rapid acceleration in innovation.

 

Recent studies have shown that businesses are placing increasing value on changing customer requirements and high-quality service quality- showing a move towards demand-driven supply chain. The same study emphasized the importance of aligning supply management strategy with overall company goals, with a focus on executive strategy and clear mission.

That being the case, most of the SCM sessions at the joint user group meeting revolved around two key takeaways: the importance of demand driven supply chain processes, and visibility into the business.

When unexpected chaos throws a wrench in an organization’s supply chain, it’s important for a company to be able to react quickly and efficiently. It is increasingly important to be able to understand the consumer side of supply chain, or customer demand - to predict changes and make changes accordingly. Demand-driven, customer-centric organizations focus on the business problem, then ask what data can do to demystify complicated production schedules, and reduce stock outs and inventory surplus. “If you automate chaos, you’ll just get more chaos,” Roddy Martin, Oracle VP SCM Product Marketing, said, “leadership has to be ahead to pull the organization in the right direction.”

In the same vein, the speakers emphasized the importance of visibility in the business. Leaders must be able to initiate the planning process where supply and demand come together, and execute decisions top down. Senior level executives must be on board with change management and know where they need to go with the business. The importance of a transparent organization is further reinforced in the R13 updates for Oracle SCM applications, which allow employees to document justifications and decisions, resulting in better collaboration across the organization.

The supply chain track ended with a panel composed of Roddy Martin, Robin Boylston (Supply Chain Manager, Dartmouth Med) and Vir Jain (Board Member, New England Oracle User Group), facilitated by Stephen Slade (Director, Oracle SCM Analyst Relations). Topics covered included the path to the cloud, blockchain, M&A and SCM risk and mitigation. The speakers discussed the future of blockchain, its role as an authenticator, and use case scenarios for organizations looking forward. They discussed the different ways Oracle Blockchain can create synergies across organizations to transform business processes and impact the future of supply chain.

We’ve got trillions of devices that collect volumes of information on consumers- but the question is, what are you going to do with all that data? Aside from looking into growth and transformation to increase revenue and improve costs, speakers also emphasized the need to focus on digitalization- converging traditional business and supply chain elements into robust and seamless end-to-end value networks. Business drivers are driving need for business change, and it is more important than ever to enable flexible paths to end-to-end supply chain in the cloud.

Visit the Oracle SCM website to learn about SCM Cloud for an adaptive and agile supply chain with integrated execution.

 

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