Summary of The Future of Business: Supply Chains

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The Economist Intelligence Unit reports that big data is the next big trend in supply chains in this succinct but educational look at the future of logistics. Businesses can certainly use information to make their supply chains faster and more efficient, and their operations more nimble and adept. But the challenge for most firms is how to parse, dissect and leverage the data now available from myriad sources such as cloud technologies and social media. getAbstract suggests this instructive recap to logistics and risk managers, procurement specialists, vendors, and executives working to incorporate big data into their businesses’ supply chains.

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The Economist Intelligence Unit is an independent research and analysis organization.



As Dell Computer, Amazon and Walmart demonstrate, thriving companies embrace nimble supply chains and master the nuances of flexible manufacturing. Unilever’s logistics managers scrutinize demographics in each of the consumer goods company’s markets to tailor products and logistics. Inditex, the parent of “fast-fashion” chain Zara, has accelerated its design, production and distribution so it can rapidly deliver new styles at bargain prices. Supply-chain operations are so critical to Apple’s success that their details remain top secret.

Supply-chain managers can no longer just cut costs; they have to add value by making...

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