Alle har interesse i den digitalte revolution
Konferencen Exchainge er netop afholdt i Frankfurt af Main. Supply Chain Priser blev uddelt og diskussioner og indlæg om blandt andet innovativ logistik og bæredygtige transportkæder var på dagsordenen
- We have an urgent need in Germany for more venture capital and a change in market conditions.
Dr. Patric Spethmann (presenter; COO, Gries Deco Company / DEPOT brand), speaking at the sixth Exchainge supply chain summit in Frankfurt, implored German businesses and policymakers to overcome their complacency and embrace the digital revolution.
- We already have the talent, knowledge, and ideas. What we urgently need now is to finally implement a long-term roadmap for putting viable ideas into practice. We need to stop losing ground to the drivers in China, the United States, and elsewhere, said Spethmann to the experts gathered at Exchainge.
The technology is there: What’s lacking is the courage to try it out and the trust in people. This core argument was the common thread running through all the discussions at Exchainge.
Leaders in supply chain management, finance, logistics, and purchasing came together in Frankfurt on November 20 and 21, 2018, around the theme “Management 4.0 – New Work & Digital Business.”
The Munich-based event organizer EuroExpo Messe- und Kongress-Gesellschaft found a new home for the established conference at Hypermotion (November 20-22, 2018) in Frankfurt. The two-day Exchainge conference was filled with in-depth discussions of all things digital.
The top themes in the spotlight included innovation and its drivers, the disruptive effects of big data and AI, the sustainability of supply chains, and the culture of digital transformation.
- Exchainge focuses primarily on the necessary change process in the supply chain, explains Dr. Petra Seebauer (Managing Director, EuroExpo; Publisher, Logistik Heute).
- Digital transformation is on the mind of everyone here - every business and every individual. Global supply chains and the structures of new business models run smoothly only when we work together to develop a common understanding.
Exchainge moderators Bettina Bohlmann (Managing Partner, 3p Procurement Branding) and Klaus Krumme (Managing Director, ZLV Center for Logistics and Traffic at the University of Duisburg-Essen) summed it up nicely:
- It’s not easy to reconcile supply and demand, remarked Krumme. And 'Trust is often more important that indicators, added Bohlmann.
Rainer Buchmann (CEO for Central Europe, Dematic) believes that digital transformation can succeed only if accompanied by “an appreciative corporate culture,” noting that this cannot be taken for granted, given the number of failed attempts. He pointed to many an attempt by “stodgy old parent companies” to burnish their image through the acquisition of a startup, only to see things go south if the different mentalities are not respected.
Johannes Giloth (Chief Procurement Officer and Senior Vice President of Global Operations, Nokia Solutions and Networks) believes that springboard innovations are possible only if the company management tolerates or actively promotes a bimodular approach.
In other words: Employees with a traditional, conservative mindset of annual cycles (Mode 1) must be allowed to work as equal partners alongside those motivated by disruptive ideas (Mode 2). “If the respect is lacking, Mode 1 will consume Mode 2,” Giloth warned. His advice: “Create structures of innovation with teams of incubators, innovation funnels, and seed funding.”
Nicole Berger (Senior Sourcing Manager for Indirect Procurement, Zalando) pointed to the importance of network effects within a company:
- Approach your colleagues, listen to what they have to say, and seize on new ideas. Sometimes, that works better over coffee between meetings than during the meetings themselves. Zalando has been in the market for ten years now, but we still consciously cultivate a startup mentality, remarked Berger.
- At Siemens we look systematically at the contribution that each and every individual wishes to make toward digital transformation, reported Priska Göbel-Ralph (Director of Digitization, Siemens).
The SCM Digital Network, with 40 core members organized across hierarchies and functional areas, “quickly and unbureaucratically adopts a genuine learning culture and consciously tolerate mistakes.” Employees have the opportunity to put forward their project ideas and receive support from Siemens in the form of money, expertise, and IT. Having trust in others and the courage to share knowledge and data - for Göbel-Ralph, this is essential.
Matthias Haubenreißer (Senior Manager for ECR & Supply Chain Management, GS1 Germany) also made a case for more trust:
- We have lots of data, but every logistics service provider collects its own data. We need to open ourselves up to shared solutions. This is the only way to leverage the potential for consolidation.
Markus Klug (Leader of Data Science & Simulation, SSI Schäfer) also addressed trust in new technologies:
- Amid the volatility in some areas of business - in light of the declining acceptance of warehouse stock and overcapacities, for example - we need to deploy learning systems.
Klug recommended starting with small AI projects, assessing data sovereignty, and keeping control over the process.
Dr. Ulrich Franke (Managing Director, Institute for Supply Chain Security) argued for increased acceptance of blockchain, reporting “70 to 80 percent” cost savings through this new technology.
That’s why the challenges of the future can only be met by a close-knit collaborative effort. Everyone needs to work together to create a robust, hybrid-integrated supply chain. The best examples of this came once more from the finalists in their pitches for the two awards presented to outstanding concepts along the supply chain.
Supply Chain Management Award
The Supply Chain Management Award was presented for the 13th time this year to Cemex, a global manufacturer of building materials. The inaugural Smart Supply Chain Solution Award was awarded to InstaFreight, the digital freight forwarding company.
- In addition to the winners Cemex and InstaFreight, the other finalists - BASF, Bossard, Schaeffler, and Synfioo/SAP - also presented innovative and outstanding solutions in their pitches, noted Dr. Petra Seebauer during the awards ceremony.
- All those taking part in this final round have already made a big splash and scored a real success, emphasized Harald Geimer, a Partner at PwC Strategy&. Geimer and Seebauer represented the prestigious jury in presenting the awards alongside Johannes Giloth (2015 winner) and Dr. Patric Spethmann (2017 winner).
In keeping with tradition, the live voting of the Exchainge conference delegates were considered in the jury deliberations.
In the interactive voting sessions, attendees were able to experience for themselves how collaboration and interdepartmental cooperation breed success. Participants had an hour to work on a supply chain simulation with EXCHAiNGE partners Andrea Walbert and Stefan Hoogervorst (both from the PMI Production Management Institute). The goal was to identify and address vulnerabilities in the value chain of an economically struggling fruit juice company and return it to profitability using expertise and teamwork.
- We took a bold initiative this year by joining forces with Hypermotion. We wanted to integrate our delegates and content with the Hypermotion audience and their focus on mobility and logistics. Both events stand for in-depth exchange in interactive formats. Now that it’s over, the task is to see how well the plan worked. We’re looking forward to Exchainge 2019, concludes Exchainge initiator Petra Seebauer.