Every year seems to have “buzzwords”. Starting out a new year, I am predicting the buzzword for 2013 in the Supply Chain world will be “AGILE”. The only serious challenger is “LEAN”.
Hey wait a minuit. Aren’t they synonyms? DICTIONARY.MS says this about them:
AGILE: Speed of response and flexibility in meeting changing supply chain requirements.
LEAN: Eliminating Non-Value Adding (NVA) activities in the supply chain.
Now, how did these two words get into the Supply Chain vocabulary so quickly ? LEAN started out to describe flexible manufacturing while AGILE was associated with project management (usually in association with SCRUM teams).
One of the difficulties we have with promoting Supply Chain Management is explaining the terminology that has developed in the “silos” of Procurement, Logistics, Warehousing, Customer Relationship Management, et al.