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Conference Updates

November 5, 2020

Gartner Supply Chain Symposium/Xpo, Americas: Day 3 Highlights

We are bringing you news and highlights from the Gartner Supply Chain Symposium/Xpo, taking place this week virtually in the Americas. Below is a collection of the key announcements and insights coming out of the conference.

On Day 3 from the conference, we are highlighting the importance of customer experience, dive into to digitization of consumer product supply chains and take a look at the top technology trends. 

Be sure to check this page throughout the day for updates.

Key Announcements

Press releases and stories covering news from Gartner Supply Chain Symposium/Xpo, Americas:


Get the Full Picture - Measure Operational and Customer Experience Metrics for Supply Chain Success

Presented by Beth Coppinger, Senior Director Analyst, Gartner

Companies often struggle with too many metrics, or how to use metrics to drive the desired operational and customer outcomes. In her session, Beth Coppinger, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner, discussed how to build a strong foundation of metrics, and how customer experience metrics can improve the supply chain organization. 

Key Takeaways

  • “Supply chain leaders never actually take the time and pause to understand the impact they’re having on the customer. Is the customer satisfied? What are they feeling?”

  • “Organizations that are able to understand their demand forecast, and respond to it, are also able to deliver higher levels of operational success.” 

  • “As your supply chain matures, your metrics will change to reflect the outcomes that you're looking to deliver.” 

  • “As a customer, I don’t really care if a product is shipped on time. My concern is that the product arrives on time and to the first requested arrival date.” 

  • “Organizations are learning how to use their metrics to drive the integration of knowledge about the experience of the customer and use that knowledge to create products, solutions and services to meet customer needs.”

  • “Organizations that exhibit high levels of employee engagement and employee satisfaction will have higher customer experience scores.”

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The Future Accelerated: Adapting Your Consumer Products Supply Chain to Our New Reality

Presented by Kimberly Becker, Senior Director Analyst, Gartner

One effect of the COVID-19 pandemic was a sudden focus on consumer product supply chains. Kimberly Becker, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner, discussed how supply chain leaders can use this attention by their C-Suite to advance their digitization efforts.

Key Takeaways

  • “All of a sudden, supply chain is in the news everywhere. And finally, people actually understand what supply chain is.”

  • “One of the biggest changes we’ve seen is the speed of change.”

  • “The companies that had invested in e-commerce were the ones that were able to quickly transition their operations and were able to offset having stores closed during lockdown.”

  • “Resilience is the ability to absorb a shock and survive it better than your competitors. It’s also how quickly organizations can figure out how to operate in new ways.”

  • “One big thing that we’ve seen out of COVID-19 is that digitalization truly is a way to move from supply chains simply surviving to thriving.”

  • “Supply chain is right now on the top of CEOs’ agendas, so now is the time for chief supply chain officers to get the support that they need to digitize their supply chains.“

Signature Series: The Top Supply Chain Technology Trends

Presented by Dwight Klappich, VP Analyst, Gartner

Historically there has been a notable divide between the digital and the physical supply chains, but this is no longer the case. In this session, Dwight Klappich, VP Analyst at Gartner,  highlights the emerging technologies that are critical to the ongoing digitization of supply chains.


Key Takeaways

  • “Supply chain leaders must identify the most appropriate solutions and make sure they select those that fit best for their organization’s culture and business objectives.”
  • “Avoid the ‘cat and the laser pointer’ trap where companies chase too many disparate initiatives with little focus or discipline. 

  • Four key emerging technologies for the supply chain today include:

  • Advanced analytics takes decision making to an entirely new level. Use of analytics in the supply chain is not new, but leading edge companies now focus more of their attention on forward-looking analytics.”

  • Artificial intelligence (AI) is about improving decision making efficiency for many organizations. Ai is key to the pattern recognition that allows robots to act collaboratively around humans. Finding and retaining the necessary skills is the big problem for most organizations.”

  • Autonomous things leverage AI and other sensory technologies to automate routine tasks. A key driver for this trend is not just labor cost, but more importantly labor availability particularly during the pandemic.

  • Blockchain continues to receive a lot of market attention because of the allure of having systems you can trust in a world that you don’t. There are numerous use cases across supply chains where the blockchain fundamentals of immutability, traceability, and being distributed are very appealing.”

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