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The Bottom Line

A View of the Industry That Pulls No Punches

Five Things to Know about Manufacturing in the Age of COVID-19

Posted by Jim Kurtz on Jun 2, 2020 4:52:00 AM
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Topics: Manufacturing, Vendors & Contracts, Contract Management, Contracts

Checking Your Blind Spots in Vendor Negotiations

Posted by Jim Kurtz on Feb 9, 2020 4:30:00 PM

In our experience, whether it’s a packaging, transportation, temp labor, or a telecom agreement, saying “no changes, here’s my signature” is a classic blunder.

Why?

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Topics: Manufacturing, Vendors & Contracts, Contract Management, Contracts

Budget Season: Two Tips for Seeing Vendor Contracts in 2020

Posted by Jim Kurtz on Sep 22, 2019 10:00:00 AM

Staring down the barrel of budget planning for 2020? For many managers working with a calendar-based fiscal year, the dog days of summer also mean the advent of the annual planning cycle. Given all the uncertainties in the past few quarters, odds are that department heads are being asked to “do more with less,” or at least step up output at a faster rate than costs.

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Topics: Manufacturing, Vendors & Contracts, Contract Management, Contracts

Benchmarking for the Win

Posted by Jim Kurtz on Aug 27, 2019 10:26:16 AM

Does Experience Matter in Vendor Cost Benchmarking

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Topics: Manufacturing, Contract Management, Contract Tracking, Tracking, Vendor management, Benchmarking, Automation, SRM TAB, Auditing

Think You Are a Small Fish? Think Again: Matching Regional Need With Regional Supply

Posted by Jim Kurtz on Jul 31, 2019 10:00:00 AM

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Topics: Manufacturing, Strategic Sourcing, Packaging, transportation, converting, converters

Efficiency: One of Packaging and Transportation’s Biggest Hurdles

Posted by Jim Kurtz on Jul 10, 2019 9:00:00 AM

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In any aspect of business, achieving a sense of efficiency—balancing effort, time, and money to achieve the best outcome—is hard work. This is a particularly unique challenge for packaging and transportation. From excess headspace to improperly scheduled routes, to simply being unaware of emerging shipping and packaging solutions, it’s easy for a business to unknowingly lose thousands of dollars and valuable resource hours per year.

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Topics: Manufacturing, Strategic Sourcing, Packaging, transport

How to Navigate Outbound Freight: It’s Much More than Getting Goods from Here to There

Posted by Mark Mrva on Jun 16, 2019 3:00:00 PM

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Topics: Manufacturing, Technology, Freight,, transport

After The Contract Is Signed, The Real Work Begins

Posted by Jim Kurtz on Apr 23, 2019 8:00:00 AM

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Negotiating new vendor agreements might be the part of the supplier contract process that garners the most attention, but it’s the careful attention to detail after the contract is signed that promises will deliver hard-fought savings. We don’t mean to say that vendors are always looking to pull one over on you after you have signed on the dotted line. Honest, human errors do occur on both sides of the contract, and maybe more often than we’d like to think.

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Topics: Insider, Manufacturing, Vendors & Contracts

5 Tips to Maximize Value in Vendor Relationships

Posted by Strategic Resource Management on Oct 5, 2018 9:00:00 AM

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All manufacturers want to get the best possible deal from their suppliers. However, the definition of “best” is subjective. Every partnership has different goals and non-negotiable points. We’ve found that before starting the contract negotiation process, a cross-functional team is well advised to invest the time to decide what it wants and needs from the relationship.

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Topics: Manufacturing, Vendors & Contracts

How Can Small Manufacturers Tap Into the AI Revolution?

Posted by Lawrence Pruss on Aug 22, 2018 10:00:00 AM

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) is on everyone’s mind in the manufacturing industry. The nation’s largest companies are investing in this technology, and countless startups are working feverishly to stake their claim to various use cases. While AI is often positioned as a threat to human jobs, it can actually enhance how humans serve customers in many ways.

The big corporations have an inherent advantage in harnessing AI to their benefit. AI runs on data, and they simply have more of it. They have hundreds of thousands of customers. They also have more resources – both dollars and full-time employees – to utilize and monitor AI. This doesn’t mean there’s no hope for smaller businesses, though. Data can be pooled and anonymized across groups of smaller manufacturers, generating many of the same powerful insights.

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Topics: Manufacturing, Vendors & Contracts