Supply Chain Executives: 38 Percent Lack Proper Visibility during the Holidays - Global Trade Magazine
  November 19th, 2015 | Written by

Supply Chain Executives: 38 Percent Lack Proper Visibility during the Holidays

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  • Survey: 24 percent of supply-chain execs were surprised at time it took to get from prototype to product.
  • Survey: 19 percent of supply-chain execs underestimated expenses getting from prototype to product.
  • Survey: the most difficult part of dealing with overseas suppliers is understanding their business culture.
  • Survey: biggest supply-chain risk lies in single-source components.

The majority of supply-chain executives say getting from prototype to market is the most challenging aspect of bringing wearable technology to market. Nearly half agree that the most difficult part of dealing with overseas suppliers is understanding their business culture, while 62 percent list quality concerns are the biggest challenge when selecting a vendor. Thirty-eight percent feel they lack proper visibility and communication with their vendors during the holidays.

Those were some of the finding of a survey of 600 supply-chain executives by Riverwood Solutions, a managed supply-chain services and operations consultancy.

Fifty-two percent of supply chain executives agree that the most challenging aspect of bringing wearable technology to market is getting from the prototype to market. Nineteen percent say the challenge lies in making the technology work; 19 percent say sourcing custom parts is the challenge; 10 percent say raising capital is the challenge.

Nearly one in four executives also pointed to prototypes when asked what the biggest surprise was in getting a product to the market: 24 percent said they had no idea how time consuming it would be to get from prototype to product and 19 percent said they underestimated how expensive getting from prototype to product would be.

Forty-eight percent of supply chain executives agree that the most difficult part of dealing with overseas suppliers is understanding their business culture. Twenty-four percent cite difficulty validating capabilities of overseas suppliers; 14 percent say the difficulty lies in agreeing on terms and contract negotiations; 10 percent say the difficulty is working in different time zones.

In terms of supply chain risk, one-third of executives say the risk lies in single-source components. Twenty-nine percent have difficulty accurately predicting the volumes they need and 19 percent say sometimes lead times are too long.

Sixty-two percent of the executives polled agree that the biggest concern when selecting a vendor is whether or not the vendor will be able to provide the quality needed.

Thirty-eight percent of supply chain executives feel they lack proper visibility and communication with their vendors during the holidays, and this is the biggest problem they face during the season.