Surely cloud computing using a Google Chrome like OS will be a boon for SMBs for their supply chain managment. SMBs have been generally stuck with old generation hardware and software systems and they can not keep on investing every year in upgrading the technologies. They also have to work with poorly skilled programmers and analysts because of their limited paying capacity. In such scenario Cloud appears from heaven like a god-sent angel. No hardware investments, no software licensing costs, no manpower training. Just pay-per-use. Only thing is that the data security and privacy of the business information lying on the cloud. For this we not only need very carefully crafted service level agreemnets but also the international legal infrastructure to enfoce legality of such agreements.
@Ashish: Each time you subscribe to a service by a cloud provider, the vendor has to sign a comprehensive terms and conditions agreement. This agreement makes sure that the vendor provides adequate security to the data and the data is not leaked out or misused for any purposes. I believe all ethical companies do abide by the agreement.
I think the biggest advantage cloud computing can give to a supply chain is to allow access to the data from multiple platforms. Data is the most critical element in making supply chain decisions and ease of access to the data can certainly allow managers to take correct decisions on time. With cloud computing, you are no longer confined by the restriction of accessing the supply chain data through your laptop and while being connected to the company's network. These days smartphone apps, backed by cloud computing, allow you to get real time information about your inventory inventory movement, no matter where you are. This certainly can lead to managing the supply chain more efficiently.
The Cloud providers could do a lot of stuff...For instance they could sell off the data to the highest bidder(which is what most Internet Marketing companies are upto today),with Zero disregard for Privacy concerns.
This is just one,but if you let your imagination run wild you could come up with many more sceanarios.
As cloud computing continues to emerge as a disruptive force, organizations will want to assess the potential, according to the research firm Gartner. This change in the market will help CIOs understand and delineate vendors, IT services, software and infrastructure components.
Gartner predicts that by 2012, India-centric IT service companies will represent 20% of cloud aggregators through service offerings. Organizations that can adopt newer utility and cloud-based offerings in select areas of their enterprises—with a heavy dose of strong risk management skills—will gain an important advantage within their industries.
So, can anyone provide insight into how cloud computing can help supply chains?
Yes, that's how I got the idea for this post. I'm one of those lucky ones who gets the opportunity to try out the service. Any questions I can answer for you? They can provide a free mobile OS because they make money off advertising.
Ashish, What could these providers do with the data that could raise privacy concerns? How will they sort them out. Will the Federal Trade Commission step in to try and regulate cloud computing like it has done with online advertising?
I do not think chrome OS will address the needs of a big manufacturing company that are actually served by the supply chain software. As far as my experience goes, every one uses SAP. Even though I’m not guy with extensive knowledge on the supply chain software, I think it is complex software that works on huge database of existing information and to actually manage all the supply chain tasks online over the computer.
This article can fuel lot of new thoughts. So, I would like to hear from experts regarding how a cloud application can actually benefit the manufacturing companies to have a better supply chain management.
As a IT professional primarily focussed on solving the needs of SMBs,I can say with a lot of certainty that Cloud Apps have a lot of potential for most SMBs.The ability to outsource all but the most critical functions of your core business is a major,major Plus point. Understandably what those Cloud providers could do with the Data raises significant privacy hassles,but that is something which will be sorted out as these companies gain more experience in providing these solutions.
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.