Strengthening the Core: The Pillars for Success

At Gartner Supply Chain Symposium/Xpo™ 2020, we have 10 tracks designed to take your supply chain to the next level wherever you are in your transformation journey. Preempt risk and be prepared for the anticipated disruptions ahead.

Alongside this, the much popular Industry Day returns, we'll have 4 tracks dedicated to what’s happening within the supply chain space in industrial manufacturing, life sciences, retail and hi-tech manufacturing.

2020 theme - Winning in the Turns: Define Your Strategy, Optimize Your Costs, Nurture Your Talent

Top performers defy conventional thinking during disruptions. The most successful companies take risks in “the turns,” which can be economic, geopolitical, environmental, social or competitive. While some focus only on short-term mitigation tactics, top performers defy conventional thinking by maintaining focus on long-term strategy and implementing preconceived plans when anticipated disruptions occur. 

The evolution of digital technologies, the increasing shortage of key talent, the opportunity of the circular economy and the emergence of non-traditional competitors are among the key external forces that are reshaping how supply chains are defined, organized and operated. Successful supply chain organizations must respond to these and other internal and external forces by setting up a strategy driving an innovative and cost-optimized supply chain. This track is for chief supply chain officers (CSCOs) and heads of supply chain strategy looking to find both inspiration and guidance in designing and planning for these trends and creating a supply chain strategy to win in the turns.

Key topics covered:

  • Future of supply chain
  • Data and analytics in supply chain
  • Supply chain strategy
  • Digital business
  • Cost optimization
  • Agile supply chain
  • Supply chain technology
  • End-to-end supply chain
  • Customer experience (CX)

Supply chain organizations without clear, fit-for-purpose operating models struggle to execute against goals, attract talent and adapt to disruptions or “the turns” within the business context. Top performers maintain focus on aligning operating models to customer value, corporate strategy and business models using strategy realization, governance and leadership best practices. The Leadership and Governance track provides inspiration and how-tos for those looking to lead, govern and mature their organization to the demand-driven value network leadership aspiration, and helps you to integrate the end-to-end supply chain to support growth, optimize costs and manage complexity in the digital age. 

Key topics covered:

  • Supply chain leadership
  • Supply chain governance
  • Supply chain maturity
  • Operating model designs
  • Organizational design
  • Ecosystems
  • Supply chain networks
  • Transformation best practices
  • Resource allocations
  • Performance management

In an environment of political and economic uncertainty, fast and efficient decision making throughout sales and operations planning (S&OP) becomes more crucial than ever. While S&OP connects commercial, financial and supply chain plans to achieve business objectives, speed in communication of decisions and executing them provide companies with a competitive advantage to respond to changing customer and shareholder expectations. Supply chains must design mature planning processes that are robust yet agile enough to meet changing business priorities. Key enablers are a collaboration with multifunctional teams and developing talent to master the pace of decision making utilizing business knowledge and digital dexterity. This track offers insights for supply chain planning leaders on how to improve their process, organization, metrics and technology to further improve business performance in the turns.

Key topics covered:

  • Sales and operations planning (S&OP)
  • Designing mature planning processes
  • Supply chain talent development
  • Scenario planning
  • Multifunctional collaboration
  • Business priorities and balancing trade-offs

Changing market dynamics are transforming the way procurement organizations interact with their internal customers and suppliers, forcing chief procurement officers (CPOs) to rethink their strategies for delivering business value. In a downturn, they will face increased pressure to reduce costs and assure supply, putting the procurement function in the spotlight. Planning effectively for turbulent times is essential to ensure that procurement meets business expectations without jeopardizing its long-term goals or introducing unnecessary risks. This track provides insights and frameworks to help CPOs deliver on their strategy, cost and talent objectives while creating new ways to add value to advance procurement’s strategic influence in the business.

Key topics covered:

  • Anticipating risk
  • Product supply optimization
  • Supplier collaboration
  • Upskilling talent
  • Cost optimization
  • Actively engaging and collaborating with suppliers
  • Building a balanced direct sourcing team

Business models are changing dramatically, customer expectations are heightening, lead times are shortening, and revolutionary new technology capabilities continue to emerge. CSCOs are shifting their perspective on manufacturing operations from a cost of doing business to a partner to the business, and source of revenue generation and growth. While volatile market conditions and economic pressures are narrowing the focuses on optimizing costs, quality and capacity utilization, the time to take action is now. This track cuts through the hype and provides CSCOs and manufacturing leaders the tactics and practical ways to unlock manufacturing’s ability to create and deliver the next level of value. 

Key topics covered:

  • Manufacturing operations
  • Efficient manufacturing strategies
  • Smart manufacturing
  • Manufacturing technologies
  • Integrating manufacturing and supply chain performance objectives
  • Organizational design
  • Digital roadmap
  • Responding to changing market conditions

The future of logistics and customer fulfilment strategy and operations will be shaped by quickly evolving digital imperatives, complex supply chain trading partner ecosystems and transformative customer demands. To secure a leading position in the future, supply chain leaders responsible for logistics and customer fulfilment must not sacrifice long-term objectives for short-term gains in the face of economic, technological, environmental, geopolitical or competitive uncertainties. This track helps inform and guide logistics leaders as they navigate and operate within a state of rapid change to deliver capabilities and outcomes required to secure both current and future competitive advantage. 

Key topics covered:

  • Pre-preparing demand
  • Scenario planning
  • Customer experience (CX)
  • Logistics strategy and maturity
  • Forecasting
  • Transforming supply chains to customer demands
  • Talent management
  • Robotics / AI

Strategic technology trends have the potential to drive significant disruption and deliver substantial opportunity. Supply chain IT leaders face the challenge of how to build the much-needed digital foundation. Most supply chain organizations are in the designing and delivering stages, while only some have broken through the barrier and are either scaling or, to a lesser extent, harvesting the benefits of digitalization. This track provides relevant, unbiased, practical insights and advice that inform decisions on technology acquisitions to advance in the digital journey.

Key topics covered:

  • Digital supply chain
  • Supply chain technology
  • End-to-end supply chain visibility
  • Digital transformation
  • Data and analytics in supply chain
  • Real-time data
  • Aligning to wider IT business strategy

Opportunities for value creation and stakeholder pressure are putting sustainability firmly on the agenda for supply chain professionals. Sustainability emphasis can differentiate brands in a time of increasing consumer environmental concern. However, without senior leadership commitment, digital tools and the right skills in place the today’s sustainability strategies are unlikely to scale across the organization. This track provides insight into the sustainability strategies of tomorrow, where organizations shift their operating model to enable the circular economy, offering an advantage over competitors. 

Key topics covered:

  • Sustainability trends and best practices
  • Product and packaging strategies
  • Social impact
  • Digitally enabled circular economy
  • Stakeholder engagement

Increasingly, being competitive requires organizations to understand and adapt more quickly to their customers’ experience. A responsive supply chain positions organizations to deliver exceptional customer experiences and create lasting relationships that drive long-term performance. This requires the integration of the supply chain both internally and externally across a myriad of customer touchpoints. In times of disruption, leaders need to double down and leverage this deep customer knowledge to prioritize and focus investments in areas that drive joint value creation, risk mitigation and growth. This track informs and guides supply chain leaders in developing customer-centricity and designing solutions to enhance the customer experience. 

Key topics covered:

  • Customer experience (CX)
  • CX strategy
  • Customer-centric culture
  • Building talent programs to support a change in customer behavior
  • Customer interactions and touchpoints
  • CX governance
  • CX metrics

Quality has never mattered more. New technologies have empowered customers to seek out and compare an endless array of products from around the globe. Building a strong quality image can not only help companies avoid the next round of viral consumer punishment, but can also lead to significant competitive advantage. Unfortunately, traditional rules-based quality improvement processes do not align with the new working environment. Instead, companies must help employees view quality as critical to their own jobs by embedding it as a core value in the company’s culture. This track explores how to build and sustain a strong culture of quality. 

Key topics covered:

  • Quality improvement processes
  • Company culture
  • Governing employee behavior
  • Workforce message segmentation

Retail and consumer products supply chains are in an evolutionary period where consumers are continually changing, with expanding expectations, including social and sustainability issues. Meanwhile, the broader geopolitical environment, economic outlook and increasingly competitive landscape are adding significant uncertainty. To survive in this environment, supply chains must focus on long-term strategies to enable integrated and agile end-to-end operations that meet consumers’ changing needs while balancing innovation with foundational capabilities. This exchange has been developed for supply chain leaders in the retail and consumer products industry who are ready to respond to this challenging environment, building out core capabilities and complementing them with innovative new ways of working to deliver an exceptional customer experience. 

 Key topics covered:

  • Supply chain transformation
  • Optimize operations
  • Develop foundational capabilities
  • Innovation in technology
  • Integrated and agile end-to-end operations

Industrial manufacturing leaders are deploying advances in automation, analytics and visibility as capabilities across their businesses from planning to operations and logistics increase. At the same time, the need for resilience and the need to optimize the network for cost are both high in this period of uncertainty in the global economy. This track provides supply chain leaders in the industrial manufacturing industry who are balancing innovation with fiscal discipline while driving deep transformations in their supply chain network.

Key topics covered:

  • Future of supply chain for industrials
  • Service level sustainability
  • Cost structures
  • Global supply chain ecosystems
  • Automation
  • Trade policies
  • Agility and cost optimization

High-tech leaders are deploying new capabilities across their supply chains and businesses to make better decisions faster, to keep up the clock speed of business. This requires risk taking on innovation balanced with the ability to incrementally drive improvements. In the midst of this, the threat of global and local disruptions and changes are placing more pressure on not having any missteps, so a multi-faceted strategy is required. The combination of all these factors drives a need to improve the ability to anticipate, prepare for and respond to the disruption in the supply chain. This track helps high-tech supply chain leaders who are not only looking at the increasingly challenging environment and trying to understand the risks but also what opportunities it presents. Awareness of the macro trends strategies leaders are employing and ways to mitigate risks are key areas of focus.

Key topics covered:

  • Macro trends
  • Multi-faceted strategies
  • High-tech manufacturing
  • Global trade risks
  • Supply chain resiliency
  • Risks in the supply chain
  • Future of supply chain (manufacturing)

Winning in the turns takes a focus on supply chain strategy, cost optimization and talent development for life science organizations. This track helps life science exchange leaders build and align capabilities in innovation, collaboration and alignment to improve human health.  

Key topics covered:

  • Supply chain strategy
  • Cost optimization
  • Talent development
  • Leadership’s role in life sciences supply chain
  • Functional excellence
  • Personalized medicine
  • Population health management
  • Informed patients

Want to see tracks in one place?

Download the track overview PDF.