How Important Is Supplier Relationship Management?

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Very important and not important at all.
It all depends on which quadrant each supplier is in the Boston Matrix.
Therefore if suppliers are in the Sole Supplier quadrant, than supplier relationship is critical.
While if suppliers are in the “Leverage” or “Shop” quadrant than competition should keep the service level meeting your requirements.
It also depends on the complexity of your own companies product. Therefore in Aviation, Military and Automotive where complex components are contracted for the life of a platform/product from a single supplier under design license than you end up with a high percentage of “Sole Suppliers” that need to be managed. If just one of these suppliers fails to deliver than the whole project or production line is placed at risk.

It also depends if you just assemble the asset and sell it, or if you own the asset for it’s full life cycle. When full life cycle ownership is required, than Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) is critical. Service Level agreements (SLA’) that control supplier behavior after installation of equipment is critical in contracts.

For example setting targets for Mean Time Between Failure (MTBF) on critical equipment will insure that your supplier understand how they should perform after the sale is completed.

At the end of the day your own company must have a clear strategy for each supplier and commodity so as to insure that the suppliers are not confused by conflicting requirements.

Than it is just a matter of specifying your required SLA’s in each contract to insure you achieve the correct supplier relationship from each supplier.

And of course if you do not actively manage the the SLA’s in the contract than they will soon be ignored 

More Trains to Hit South Florida

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More trains rumbling through South Florida neighborhoods could be coming soon, and with them drivers sitting longer at railroad crossings.

The number of freight trains could more than double after a widened Panama Canal opens. The wider canal and new shipping lane will allow a massive new line of mega-ships to pass through in early 2016, increasing the amount of freight heading to South Florida ports.

After that, the ports likely would be expanded to handle the larger ships. And the goods from those ships would be transported by train.

Some projections estimate that 24 to 28 freight trains a day will travel on railroads in South Florida in the next five years compared to about eight to 11 riding the rails now.

That has many folks worrying about trains blocking roads as they drive to and from work, take their children to school or drive for any reason.

“Some of those freight trains seem extremely long,” said Glenn Smith, of Wilton Manors, who lives three blocks from the Florida East Coast Railroad tracks. “You can back up an intersection real fast with a big train.”

All those lowered railroad gates would back up traffic more often. With passenger trains such as the upcoming All Aboard Florida Miami-to-Orlando passenger service added to the mix, there could be as many 32 trains a day starting in 2016. Tri-Rail has proposed a commuter service on the Florida East Coast Railroad’s freight tracks that could bring as many as 26 to 50 trains a day. It’s unclear when Tri-Rail trains will be on the East Coast Railroad tracks, as the two sides are still negotiating.

To get ready for all those potential trains and delays, the Florida Department of Transportation already is looking at ways to ease the starting and stopping. Minor delays could be fixed with new technology to coordinate gate closings. The department also could align oncoming trains with traffic-signal patterns.

The transportation department is asking railroads to run freight trains at more varied times of the day or double-stack train cars to shorten them, said Jeff Weidner, a strategic development manager for the transportation department.

 

Read More About Southern Florida Trains