How to obtain supply chain resilience while being ahead of regulatory complexity

complexity, supply chain, performance gap, VUCA

In today's globalized world, regulatory complexity is one of the root causes to lacking supply chain performance. This article presents the sixth of eight root causes we defined for supply chains lagging behind their potential. You will find an overview of all root causes in the first post of our ten-part series. For more details, jump to the related article. 

Dr. Christoph Kilger
By Dr. Christoph Kilger

Active Supplier Network Management: a key figure in business success

complexity, supply chain, performance gap

Today, we give you an insight into our 5th root cause: the complexity of supplier network. In the previous articles, we already addressed the root causes of product portfolio complexity, speed of innovation, new types of competition, and multi-channel sales complexity.


The complexity of supply networks is determined by the diversity of supplier relationships and their changes over time. The main drivers for the diversity of the network are the number of suppliers involved and the topology of the network, which is expressed in the number of levels, the degree of networking, and the types of relationships. Examples of supplier relationships are direct material suppliers, logistics services providers, contract manufacturers, engineering contractors, equipment vendors, and professional services providers. In addition to the structural complexity, the geographical location and thus political and social structures have an additional influence on the complexity of the supplier network.

Dr. Christoph Kilger
By Dr. Christoph Kilger

How decisions on your sales channels lead to strategic supply chain design requirements

complexity, supply chain, digitalization, S&OP

This article will analyze the complexity resulting from the coexistence of several different sales channels. It is precisely this complexity that continues to be the cause of supply chain performance issues. As a basis, you can check the previous articles from the 10-part series about the root causes of the supply chain performance gap that started with a summary and headed right to the root causes - product portfolio complexity, speed of innovation, and new types of competition.

Dr. Christoph Kilger
By Dr. Christoph Kilger

Is your business in sync with digital supply chain innovation yet, or are you falling short of your potential?

supply chain, performance gap, innovation, VUCA

The speed of innovation has increased significantly over the last 15 years and has become a key factor for competitive advantage. The success of technology and innovation leaders like Alphabet, Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft illustrate this development. Their products and services, such as the iPhone or video streaming services like Amazon Prime Video, have changed the way we live, work and interact with each other tremendously. However, current technological developments not only have an impact on end-customer markets. More and more use cases are also emerging for companies which can be subsumed under the keywords digital business models, Industry 4.0, IoT, cloud technologies, robotics, and AI.


The core of innovation is to enable people to do tasks better than they previously could or make them do things that they couldn’t do before.


Dr. Christoph Kilger
By Dr. Christoph Kilger

Product portfolio complexity: the big unknown player in supply chain performance

complexity, supply chain, performance gap

Supply chain performance is a measurable indicator based on turnover, costs, and capital employed. We have identified 8 root causes for supply chains lagging behind their performance that we are happy to share with you in a series of articles. Today we will dive deeper into the one cause with the biggest impact on your supply chain performance: product portfolio complexity.

The 8 root causes we have identified are:

  • Product portfolio complexity
  • Speed of innovation
  • New types of competition
  • Multi-channel sales complexity
  •  The complexity of supplier network
  • Regulatory complexity
  • Sustainable requirements
  • Internal complexity

Dr. Christoph Kilger
By Dr. Christoph Kilger

Closing the Supply Chain Performance Gap

supply chain, performance gap

The purpose of a supply chain is to provide customers with physical goods in the right quantity and quality at the right time and place. Multiple partners collaborate on the operational processes of a supply chain – material suppliers, manufacturers, logistics providers, distributors, retailers – to fulfill customer demand. Thus, a supply chain can be seen as a virtual entity, distributed over many locations and organizations, connected via material, information, and financial flows. Being virtual, distributed, and connected, supply chains are inherently difficult to manage. As a result, many supply chains operate in a mode that is far from optimal. We call this the supply chain performance gap.


Dr. Christoph Kilger
By Dr. Christoph Kilger

What's the connection between blockchain and supply chain performance?

supply chain, innovation, digitalization

The driving force behind blockchain technology is decentralized data linked together like a chain in a network across several computers so that control does not reside with a single entity. When first launched in the implementation of Bitcoin, this revolutionary idea gave rise to a whole set of crypto exchanges, financial solutions, and decentralized platforms. But the scope of blockchain technology is much larger. 

Magdalena Boyen
By Magdalena Boyen

Agility in the supply chain: what defines it?

supply chain, VUCA

No matter how big or small, all markets are ruled by many factors and rules that are impossible to predict perfectly. In an age where conditions change by the second, it is difficult, if not impossible, to predict trends and events without the help of a framework that allows versatility and helps you to stay ahead of the game. Today, the market is defined by VUCA - Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, and Ambiguity. To survive and thrive in the next normal requires a transformation not to be blindsided at any point. A vital element of this transformation is agility, and the agile supply chain is one part of this epoch.

Dr. Adrian Reisch
By Dr. Adrian Reisch

Why 9 out of 10 companies don't achieve sustainable results in their continuous improvement process.

supply chain, execution management, manufacturing

Almost every production company has a continuous improvement process: an army of people is constantly working on improving operational KPI’s, like, for instance, Overall Equipment Efficiency (OEE). However, despite all the effort, results may be stagnating. Does this sound familiar? Then you most likely have the wrong focus in steering operations. In this article, our manufacturing expert Martin Dieker shares what indicators make the difference in steering your operations.

Martin Dieker
By Martin Dieker

The Supply Chain Digital Twin: What is it?

supply chain, covid19, transparency, analytics, data science

digital twin is a highly detailed digital replica of any system that uses comprehensive data to emulate the working of the system at all times. Therefore, a supply chain digital twin is a simulation model of a supply chain. You feed the model real-time data from all sources and systems of the organizations that can exactly work out the effects of macro and micro-changes on the system using advanced analytics and learning models.

Dr. Adrian Reisch
By Dr. Adrian Reisch
Supply Chain Brief