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Compliance Stifling Value

August 12, 2008

Research by Infor suggests that Supply Chain managers in the UK “spend up to 52 days a year dealing with regulatory compliance”.

Even allowing for the fact that these results may be somewaht exaggerated (Infor provides technology solutions), there is little doubt that compliance monitoring has become a significantly greater task for many of those in supply chain, legal and contract managemet jobs.

Infor’s findings suggest that compliance monitoring comes at the expense of other activities – such as work that will “unlock cost savings, optimise productivity and add all-important value to the business”. And the fact that manySupply professionals feel there is no robust risk management strategy covering supply operations obviously suggests that relief is not at hand.

Since compliance is by nature a rules-based activity, it is manifestly suited to automation. But of course that depends on sufficient analysis and recording, rather than reliance on the awareness and competence of individual managers.

Among the other interesting findings in the Infor research were the following:

  • Other major concerns include the need for better supply chain visibility (96 per cent), shrinking margins (90 per cent), introduction of new products (89 per cent) and escalating consumer expectations (89 per cent).
  • 82 per cent of supply chain managers said they were concerned about reducing their carbon footprints. But 47 per cent stated cost as a barrier to implementing green initiatives and 32 per cent claimed that an inability to measure results hindered progress.
  • Three quarters of those polled said that their supply chain’s geographic reach had increased in the last two years. Almost half (43 per cent) claimed that their supply chain now incorporated the UK, Asia-Pacific, the Americas and both Eastern and Western Europe.
  • 67 per cent said that they were more likely to offshore parts of their supply chain compared with two years ago. While Asia-Pacific would be the offshore hub of choice for 47 per cent, 53 per cent leant towards Eastern Europe as their preferred destination.


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