It does seem a great idea to let suppliers add their products and descriptions themselves. I am just wondering how the system caters to this when suppliers update any information about the products. Do the updates get reflected in the catalogs? In case of online catalogs, this does seem feasible, but it can be a problem in printed catalogs.
The measurement of the 16 vs 35 products represents an average of Bluestem's customers. I don't think there was any particular magic analysis to arrive at them... just an average of those suppliers who do provide the ability to drop ship versus those that do not. We did not discuss revenue.
This function certainly makes it easier to find trading partners. As for setting up a business from scratch... this may help after the initial startup issues have been overcome. In order to use this particular system, the retailer needs to have the basics in place with regard to its online or catalog presence, and needs to be a subscriber to SPS Commerce's EDI services. But since you would want to be using EDI anyhow, that's not a big hurdle.
The matching function allows the retailer to find suitable suppliers, but it also allows prospective suppliers to evaluate the retailer. So it's a 2 way conversation, which is ultimately a good thing for everyone.
As for intermediaries - the retailer remains firmly in the middle here as the presenter of the catalog. This system is not open to the public as a shopping search system. It is strictly for wholesale connections.
I found this article fascinating. I often wondered how easy it was to set up an online retailing business and simply work as an intermediary. I wonder if the systems will get so slick that the role of the intermediary will disappear or do you reckon there will always be the need for the "middle man"?
Scott, it’s always better to go for a customized search rather than blindly believing the vendor> there are many websites, which helps us for a customized search based on the user input parameters. They list out the results with links, for the vendors and finally a cart for online purchase.
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.
While no one really can accurately predict the future, we can take guidance from another Drucker saying which is the best way to predict the future is to create it.
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.