Whether you're savoring the bittersweet experience of shepherding your son or daughter to their first day of classes or still recovering from the shock of writing that first college tuition check, one thing's for sure--back-to-school season has arrived.
And with each week bringing fresh signs that the electronics industry is finally struggling back to its feet, a brief but compelling primer on the latest trends in supply chain management strategies may be just the educational interlude needed to prepare you for the market's next demand cycle.
To that end, EBN and the Institute for Supply Management will co-sponsor the Second Annual Supply Network Conference (SNC) Sept. 17-19 at the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose.
Dr. Hau L. Lee of Stanford will again serve as master of ceremonies while providing insight into what he terms the Three A's of supply chain management: Agility, Adaptability, and Alignment (see Lee's exposition on page 4 of this issue). Duane Zitzner, executive VP of the Personal Systems Group at Hewlett-Packard, will deliver the keynote address and discuss the lessons learned as his division grappled with the integration challenge arising from HP's merger with Compaq (see story on page 27).
SNC will include an examination of the role that China plays in determining the business, product development, manufacturing, procurement, and sourcing strategies of the electronics sector. Senior industry executives will explore the implications for companies that may be considering the relocation of their production lines and purchasing to Asia.
Representatives from other companies will address the benefits and pitfalls that come from building a collaborative network. Attendees can discuss the best methods for creating a responsive supply network, maximizing the flow of goods and information between partners, and identifying the best systems and business processes to enable companies to adjust their networks to sudden market changes. Other industry leaders will delve into the equally complex issue of risk management as the electronics supply network becomes increasingly global and interdependent.
Market research firm iSuppli will offer a general assessment of the state of the industry and provide insight into the fiscal health and direction of several key technology markets. And a gaggle of seasoned industry analysts from technology and financial research firms will discuss the future of demand forecasting, what kinds of data and indicators they use to reach their projections, and what is required to improve forecasting accuracy in general.
If you can absorb all that, you ought to have enough homework to rival any honors student. For more information on the Supply Network Conference, visit www.supplynetwork.org.
E-mail comments to Andrew MacLellan at firstname.lastname@example.org.