Operations press room

August 2016

On the Road to Digital Ops in Manufacturing
The digital revolution will radically change how companies operate their businesses on a daily level—their manufacturing plants, capital assets, supply chain and service, and product development. And the benefits in many cases will be enormous.

SupplyChainBrain: How Robotics Process Automation Is Transforming Supply Chains
The subject of robotics in production and distribution has been dominated by fear, hyperbole and misunderstanding. Critics of the technology would have us believe that robots are poised to take over the workplace, with little or no role for humans. So what are the real prospects for robotics in the supply chain?

How to Turn your Cost-Cutting Strategy into a Growth Strategy
Today’s CEOs are increasingly pessimistic. Three years ago, the annual CEO Survey revealed a focus on innovation and growth. Concerns about regulation, skills, exchange rate volatility, geopolitical uncertainty and taxes have shifted that focus to ensuring companies are sized right for the current economic and political environment.


July 2016

Leveraging Big Data to Influence Corporate Strategy
The role of today’s CFO extends beyond financial stewardship and accountability to functions previously assigned to a chief information officer. No longer solely tasked with financial transaction management, the modern CFO can now serve as an even greater asset to the C-suite by becoming a strategic partner responsible for using data-driven insights to influence day-to-day decision making.


June 2016

Launching Data Analytics to Inform Financial and Operational Decision Making
The evolution of the C-suite is perhaps best exemplified by the expanded role of the CFO is playing in many organizations. No longer limited to financial stewardship, the CFO is now expected to be a strategic partner responsible for using data-driven insights to boost profitabilty and enhance efficiency.


May 2016

How to Be a Data-Driven CFO
Today’s technology, cloud, and IoT-driven world is continually generating a wealth of data, creating both opportunity and challenge for those tasked with deciphering and analyzing it. CFOs in particular are now facing increased pressure to connect the dots between multiple data streams to identify patterns that will optimize a company’s growth and align its costs with its strategy.


March 2016

SupplyChainBrain: Investing to Become Fit for Growth
Cost cutting by itself is not fun for most employees and does not inspire them. But getting lean and cost cutting in some areas to make the company "Fit for Growth" is motivational because the goal is to reallocate resources and invest in capabilities that will help the company win. Once supply chain professionals embrace that the purpose of the cost cutting is smarter investment to become more competitive, they will rally around the cause.

SupplyChainBrain: Climate Change and Supply Chain Resiliency
Companies are starting to look at climate change more scientifically. Rather than making judgments based on their own experience, they are using external data to drive models to gauge the potential for disruption to their own supply chains - from singular events such as hurricanes to longer-term effects such as crop migration. This process helps them to understand how truly resilient they are in their ability to source, manufacture and distribute their products. 

SupplyChainBrain: Improving the Downstream Supply Chain
Given today's intensely competitive business environment, as well as consumers who are more informed and demanding than ever, it's imperative that companies develop customer-driven operations that create a distinctive experience through supply chain capabilities. Simply put, product/service features and pricing are no longer enough to meet customer expectations. And since customers in different segments often have very different needs, generic supply chain capabilities won't cut it.

SupplyChainBrain: Five Steps to Ensure the KPIs Serve the Business Strategy
Key to driving performance and achieving your business strategy is choosing KPIs that clearly align with that strategy. This usually involves identifying three or four areas where the company needs to excel, and then defining a "balanced scorecard" of metrics that shows progress toward the business goals, as well as the trade-offs necessary to achieve those goals. 


January 2016

Logistics Management: 2016 to be the year of transformation in logistics
Logistics managers seeking yet one more forecast as the year gets underway, may wish to check in with Rodger Howell, PwC’s Strategy& Principal, specializing in strategy and operations. He sees a few key areas that should be central to corporate efforts during 2016.

EBN: Customer Demands Should Drive Operational Designs
In the next five years, customer behavior is set to disrupt businesses in all industries. However, most operations fail to deliver what customers value now, or three years from now, according to a recent study from PwC. The research surveyed 1,262 operations decision-makers across the globe about their supply chain.


December 2015

Consultancy.uk: Operations management converging towards strategy
Operations and strategy are coming closer together, a recent report from PwC finds. Companies, in a bid to more quickly respond to customer expectations, are seeking to transform operations through closer alignment with strategy, as well as opening up more cross-functional engagement and capability building.

Chicago Tribune: How to retool operations to keep up with your customers
Whether your industry has been relatively stable or has rapidly shifting trends, you've noticed that it's getting harder to carry out a strategy. Digital technology has heightened customer expectations and affected how they perceive value. No matter where you work, your company needs to evolve — or risk being outperformed by competitors. To that end, successful companies are reimagining operations and working across functional teams, according to PwC's 2015 Global Operations Survey.

CEO Insights: Reimagining Operations
It’s almost too familiar to address, but it still needs to be done. PwC Principal Mark Strom estimates that at least half of the companies his teams work with would benefit from having more incentives for operations leaders to collaborate proactively and achieve business rather than functional goals.

Navigating the Growth Markets: PwC’s 2015 Global Operations Survey
PwC recently surveyed more than 1,200 COOs and operations executives on how they are changing the face of operations. Most don’t think of operations functions as mere utilities. Instead, they see new opportunities to become drivers of company strategy.


November 2015

CFO.com: Supplier Audits Rise to the Fore -- At Least, They Should 
As a company’s supply chain grows, so does its exposure to risk. Experts recommend that companies periodically audit their supply chains to identify vulnerable links, but the value that such audits actually deliver is up for debate, for a variety of reasons.

CFO.com: Cross-Functional Collaboration Comes of Age
Is cross-functional collaboration finally becoming a key operational priority for companies, after years of talking about and toying with it while functions mostly stayed within their silos? Perhaps, suggests new research from PwC. 

Consulting Magazine: It's now C-level strategic...and evolving
The role of operations within client companies is expanding. Operations generally has a “wider aperture” when it comes to managing end-to-end processes, says PwC’s Strategy& Operations Leader Eduardo Alvarez. As a result, he adds, “operations is being asked to integrate multiple competencies” across the enterprise.

SupplyChain Management Review: PwC Explains More on Recent Supply Chain Survey Findings: Exclusive Interview
A new PwC survey suggests that changes in customer behavior are set to disrupt businesses in all industries over the next five years. But there’s a paradox: most company operations are not designed to deliver what customers value…now or for a few more years.

CBS Moneywatch: The challenge of rapidly changing customer behavior
A new survey by PwC finds changing customer behaviors are "set to disrupt businesses in all industries over the next five years." And many of those companies expect to find themselves flat-footed when it comes to successfully delivering what their consumers value.


October 2015

CIO Review Magazine: Technology and Supply Chain Integration: Investing to Balance Returns and Disruptive Transformation
Given that no company has the resources to invest in every new technology, how should CIOs navigate the challenges of improving the return on their companies’ investments in supply chain technologies? The answer is to apply a portfolio investment mindset to the rapidly emerging supply chain technologies. 


January/February 2015

Global Logistics: Delivering a Competitive Advantage
When it comes to supply chain management, logistics has long been something of an afterthought. As companies look for more ways to win in the marketplace, and customers step up their demands for better service and delivery transparency, superior logistics is becoming a competitive differentiator.

Profit-Focused Planning for better decision making
While many companies struggle to derive full value from S&OP/IBP, those that excel at it has gone beyond simply balancing supply and demand.

Tightening Supply Chain Security Yields Many Benefits
Companies today face a wide range of security risks to their supply chains as well as to their sources of supply. In order to overcome vulnerabilities, companies should have a deep understanding of their internal and external supply chains, and be able to quantify the likelihood and impact of security threats.  


January/February 2014

How to Get More from your Supply Chain
Leading companies around the world have a powerful weapon in their arsenal: a supply chain that ensures products and services are delivered to customers whenever and wherever promised.

Get to Know All Your Supply Chains
Manufacturers should be developing capabilities tailored to mitigate risks in every segment of their supply chains.

Efficient Last-mile Delivery in Tomorrow’s Megacities
Rapid urbanization is an unstoppable challenge for supply chains that must be reckoned with – and soon.

Big Data: From Buzzword to Benefit 
When it comes to supply chain management, “Big Data” has generated more in the way of buzz than it has real benefit. Awash in a rising sea of data, companies still struggle to use it to make better decisions.

Published with permission from SupplyChainBrain 


May 2014

Making the Supply Chain Everyone's Business 
In today’s fast-changing global markets, creating value for the customer—and differentiation from the competition—demands an integrated approach to supply chain operations.


January 21, 2014

Get to Know All Your Supply Chains 
Companies with mature supply chain and risk management processes have a greater proportion of on-time deliveries than other companies. But they also perform better on every other measure as well, financially as well as operationally.


November/December 2013

Gathering Intelligence
Two corporate sustainability leaders team up to explore corporate practices in APICS magazine. PwC's Rocco Ciccolini and Nic Delaye offer their perspective on supply chain sustainability.


November 12, 2013

U.S. Companies Falling Behind on Innovation
PwC’s Rob Shelton discusses PwC’s 2013 Innovation and Growth Survey.


November 1, 2013

We Should Stop Telling Entrepreneurs To 'Fail Fast'
"Fail fast" has become standard entrepreneurial advice. Startups and small businesses are told they shouldn't worry about messing up, because it's better to quickly realize that something's not working and move on. That's the right idea but very much the wrong attitude, according to Rob Shelton, the global innovation chief of PwC.


April 5, 2013

How a Flexible Supply Chain Delivers Value
A flexible supply chain organization requires not only a strategic leader, but also input from managers who represent the traditional supply chain functions of planning, sourcing, manufacturing, logistics, and also sales and marketing, among others.


March 22, 2013

PwC Surveys the Supply Chain
Brad Householder and Glen Goldbach, principal and director, respectively, with PwC, report on the results of the consultancy's annual supply-chain survey.

Published with permission from SupplyChainBrain


Q3 2012

Segment your suppliers to reduce risk
Most companies treat all suppliers the same, and they respond too late to supplier-related risk. By segmenting their supply base and basing governance agreements on a supplier's role and importance in the supply chain, they could better anticipate and prevent disruption.