Category Archives: Supply Chain & Logistics

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Climate Change: The Important Role of Supply Chain

By Morgan International Staff Writers 

Al Gore said “Solving the climate crisis is within our grasp, but we need people like you to stand up and act.” In fact if you read what many of the key proponents of climate change say, they talk about individuals taking responsibility, because as a collective humans are typically waiting for somebody else to be the one to make the change. However, we can easily conclude that the biggest global businesses have a disproportionately large role to play in reducing their emissions. But, how do we hold them accountable? There are various global initiatives and legislation to limit climate change. Furthermore at a micro level, customers must take responsibility for supporting businesses who are environmentally responsible, and walking away from those who aren’t.

But what about supply chains?

This is a very interesting point as the supply chain has an incredibly important role in either reducing or increasing the emissions that an organisation is ultimately responsible for. It starts with the buying organisation deciding upon their expectations in terms of emissions. Usually this is written down in some kind of corporate social responsibility policy. Then all vendors within the supply chain are expected to comply with these standards as a minimum. Very often this is covered contractually and adherence is audited on a periodic basis.

The good news

There are organisations such as BP who are standing up and fighting against climate change – in fact BP are viewed as one of the fiercest corporate opponents. They have formulated specific actions and policies to address climate change. In fact, according to research by Influence Map, almost half of the world’s top 100 companies are actively trying to subvert climate change. This is being done through a combination of lobbying, advertising, and influencing.

In Summary 

Supply chain managers undertaking professional qualifications will obtain robust knowledge of promoting corporate social responsibility through the supply chain. However we must recognise that they may only implement this with support from the organisational leadership team.


Top 5 Traits of a Supply Chain Leader

By Morgan International Staff Writers 

The most successful supply chain leaders typically exhibit a number of common traits. These are our top 5:

  • Avoid analysis paralysis

There is a lot of data to review in the bid to make a decision. For example during a tender process there will likely be stacks of papers with offers from the bidders. It is important to work diligently through the information but to avoid analysis paralysis and never move forward to a decision. A good way to do this is to have structures for decision making. In our tender example a pre-agreed scoring matrix is a good idea.

  • A skilled negotiator

A fundamental aspect of the role of any supply chain leader is the art of negotiation. This is a skill that can be learnt through courses, training, and practice. However it is evident that some supply chain professionals do have more of a natural aptitude for negotiation than others. Typically they exhibit attributes including active listening, persuasion, and utilising the art of silence. They also look to create win win situations as opposed to a win for them and a lose for the other party.

  • Honest and ethical

Leaders should set an example and that should be one of honesty, integrity, and good ethics. A supply chain rife with corruption will ultimately fail, either due to customers finding out and taking their business elsewhere, or because there is a legal infringement and the authorities step in.

  • A robust technical foundation

The best supply chain leaders will have a strong academic foundation which very often includes the CSCP professional qualification. This provides an excellent basis to further a career in leadership.

  • Put the right things first

There will always be a lot to do – contract renewals, new negotiations, disputes to manage. The skill is in prioritising what is most important to the organisation at that point in time and directing resource to that.

In Summary

Each supply chain leader will have a slightly different mix of skills that allow them to be successful. However the 5 skills above are in our opinion among the most important and typically found in those that stand out in the industry.


5 Steps to Measure Supply Chain Performance

By Morgan International Staff Writers

Most organisations appreciate the importance of measuring the performance of their supply chain, but the question remains, what's the best way to do that? We've got it covered with these 5 simple steps:

1. Decide what you want to measure

There is no point in measuring something if the information will not help you make better business decisions. Within the supply chain, it is useful to consider that metrics fall within the following 3 main categories – cost, time, and quality. Try to cover each of these specific areas.

2. Decide upon the specific measures

All measures need to be clear and specific. It is fundamentally important that it is agreed how the measure will be taken, when, and by whom. It is very common for an organisation to want to understand how many orders they receive accurately from their suppliers. A specific measure would be the percentage of orders received correctly within a specific ‘time period’. Remember that good performance measures will drive good behaviours. Consider a balanced scorecard that combines both quantitative and qualitative measures.

3. Measure

At this stage the measurements of performance can be taken. In your planning in stage 2 you will have set out how they will be taken, the frequency, and by whom. It is of course important to have metrics that are easy to collect. Consider how collection could potentially be automated.

4. Report

Design a way in which to report the metrics that provides valuable information to decision makers. Keep in the forefront of your mind that metrics are gathered to enable positive change within the supply chain.

5. Review

This step is one of continuous improvement and recognises that metrics as initially designed may not be appropriate or indeed provide the management information that it was thought they would. Therefore the validity and usefulness of metrics should be reviewed regularly and altered as appropriate.

In Summary

Performance of the supply chain can make or break an organisation. Therefore measuring its performance is critically important to not only be aware of any issues, but also to identify areas for improvement. Want to improve your supply chain & logistics know-how? Why not consider professional training to take your skill set to the next level!


Supply Chain Salaries in the UAE

By Morgan International Staff Writers

For those working in supply chain already, or interested in pursuing a career in it, the details of the Cooper Fitch 2018 salary guide for the UAE is likely to be very interesting. At a macro level, they have estimated GDP growth of approximately 3.4% which is based on IMF forecasts. They are optimistic about slight salary improvements across the board. However, what about supply chain specifically?

Growth in the manufacturing sector as a result of foreign direct investment has increased demand for supply chain professionals in the UAE. With the influx of FDI also comes increasing supply chain complexity due to globalisation – therefore making the nature of the roles more interesting. Unsurprisingly it also means that organisations are seeking candidates that have demonstrable experience of managing many layers within a global supply chain. This is a distinct departure from prior years when local and regional experience was more in demand.

In terms of the availability of talent, there is not a supply chain shortage. However employers are very clear in their requirement for category and direct industry experience. Unsurprisingly as businesses push for competitive pricing from suppliers, an understanding of bids, negotiation, contracts and tenders is desired. Furthermore, employers typically prefer candidates who have the ability to speak and read Arabic.

Salary increases within the procurement community are expected to be 2-3%. Let’s now take a closer look at salary levels across supply chain roles in the UAE.

All of the salaries listed below are for candidates with 0-3 years’ experience and are in AED.

  • Supply Chain Manager                      22,000-32,500
  • Supply Chain Director                       35,000-40,000
  • Supply Planning Manager               20,000-24,000
  • Materials Manager                               15,000-21,000
  • Category Manager                                19,000-24,000
  • Buyer                                                           6,000-12,000
  • Procurement Manager                      22,000-30,000
  • Procurement Director                      35,000-42,000
  • Contracts Manager                              23,000-29,000
  • Logistics Manager                                15,000-19,000

 In Summary

The outlook is strong for supply chain professionals working in the UAE. For those just starting their careers it is worthwhile to seek roles which will provide experience of complex global supply chains, with plenty of opportunity for running tender processes and negotiating commercials with suppliers.


Top 4 Supply Chain Trends of 2018

By Morgan International Staff Writers 

As logistics is primarily powered by technology, it should come of no surprise that we are predicting significant change within the logistics space in 2018. These are our top 4:

Data-driven logistics

We will see a huge increase in the number of organisations adopting big data algorithms and smarter analytics to enhance their process efficiency and as a result shorten delivery times. In 2018 we will increasingly see this paired with geotagging.


A blockchain supply chain is an impenetrable way to store price, date, location, quality, and all relevant information needed to effectively manage the supply chain. The use of blockchain improves traceability and lowers potential losses due to the counterfeit market. It is early days for blockchain use in supply chains – but this is one to watch in 2018 and the coming years.


More drones and smart-glasses

The use of drones for deliveries has been on the cards for a while. In fact Amazon has been trialling it throughout 2017. Expect to see the use of unmanned aerial vehicles increase, and also the use of smart glasses to make deliveries easier through hands-free route searches.


Internet of Things (IoT)

You might be growing tired of reading about the IoT but it will continue to be present on these lists for a few years to come. The reason for that is it offers a huge amount of potential for positive step change within the logistics arena. Through RFID, GPS and other connected senses, shipping is becoming more efficient through increased traceability.


In Summary

The logistics business is being transformed by technology such as blockchain, IoT, unmanned aerial vehicles, and data analytics. Bar blockchain, the other trends made many of the lists in 2017. The big difference in 2018 will be that organisations will be moving from the trials they undertook in 2017 to implementation programmes.



Improve You Inventory Management in 4 Simple Steps

By Morgan International Staff Writers 

It does not matter if your business is online, has a physical presence, or a mix of the two – inventory is the lifeblood of your business. When inventory is mismanaged the repercussions can be huge. It can cause reputational damage with customers, lose you sales, and may even mean you have to write off product that you can’t sell. The fundamentals of inventory management are simple – you need enough stock to satisfy demand in the right place and the right time, but not more stock than you need. Many businesses have sunk from having their cash tied up in warehouses full of stock that they can’t shift. So how do you get this right? These are our top 4 tips:

  • Hire a supply chain professional

There are some great candidates out there who are professionally qualified to manage complex inventories. They will produce and implement a suitable strategy based on the particular demand patterns of the organisation and the product/service in question.

  • Be organised

This seems very simple but it is probably the most important tip. You should know where your inventory is, how much of it you have, what anticipated demand will be, and so on. You must have full transparency and current data at all times. The best way to do this is by using technology.

  • Monitor in real time

There is some brilliant technology available that can be used to monitor supply and demand. The possibilities of this software is huge – one good example is that it can be used to order stock within given parameters depending on what has been sold. It can also be used online so that customers know what is available to order, and what they might need to wait for. It is a great way to not disappoint customers.

  • Don’t run out of stock in demand

The ‘in demand’ bit is key. Don’t run out of stock that you have demand for. You can’t sell what you do not have and that is a missed opportunity for cash into the business. This is a fine art as you do not want to hold unnecessary stock. By implementing tips 1-3, you are far more likely to be successful at mastering this tip.

In Summary

Inventory management is an art. Getting it right has alluded many organisations for years. However by being methodical, utilising technology, and hiring some great supply chain professionals, the chances of being successful are greatly increased.


Why you need to forecast in your supply chain


By Morgan International Staff Writers

Forecasting is vital to every industry- knowing what your company’s future will look like is the key to planning your strategy and future success. Forecasting in supply chains is no different, and below are a few reasons you should definitely consider demand, supply and price forecasting:

  1. Customer satisfaction- Ultimately, the customer is always right. Increasing customer satisfaction by forecasting what customers will want is vital to business success.
  2. Stock control- Doing regular warehouse audits keeps your inventory team happy. Demand forecasting helps to time purchases for when the sales come in.
  3. Reducing product costs- When looking at products, it should be looked at on how to reduce costs. You should identify and then remove obsolete products from the inventory. This will in turn reduce costs, and improve your demand forecasting.
  4. Improving shipping management- Looking forward and predicting the volume of orders helps management personnel expectations and capacity. Having capacity means that orders can be met on time and customers will stay happy.
  5. Sales and marketing- understanding promotions and pricing both up and down the supply chain means you can plan your marketing strategy effectively and forecast price changes.

You don’t need sophisticated technology and algorithms to forecast. However, you must be aware of what’s going on in your supply chain and undertake regular warehouse audits. To learn how to do this effectively, check out our courses.

Ten Reasons You Should Consider a Career in Logistics


By Morgan International Staff Writers

Logistics have an important role to play in every company, whether you work in the manufacturing, services or public sector. You can learn about intricate supply chains and the workings of different types of businesses. Here are a few reasons you should consider a career in logistics:

  1. Every day is different- you will work with companies of all sizes and across sectors. One day you could be transporting raw materials to a chemical company, and the next transporting aid to an area after a natural disaster.
  2. Pay- In the USA, logisticians’ salaries are increasing incredibly, with the average salary hitting $74,000, and you don’t need a degree to achieve this.
  3. You don’t want to sit behind a desk all day- If you want to develop skills which aren’t necessarily “office-based”, then logistics is for you.
  4. Start anywhere- there’s no need to be in a specific region or area to work in logistics as almost every organisation in operation will have a need for logisticians.
  5. Make long-lasting relationships- Logistics is full of people from all walks of life, and given the need to interact on an every day basis with your customers, this could open up opportunities for further advancement and cultural learning.
  6. Global industry- logistics is a global industry. There are many opportunities for travel, as well as the chance to learn more about how international businesses operate.
  7. Promotion prospects- the industry is well known for training low-skilled employees and promoting from within over hiring externally. Logistics is an industry based on merit.
  8. Opportunities are plentiful- Logistics isn’t just arranging transport of a product, professionals can focus on other sectors within the industry such as warehousing, wholesaling and postal services. The industry is truly varied, with there being large multi-nationals, SMEs or government entities for which you could work.
  9. Jobs are available for people of all levels- You don’t require an advanced degree to work in logistics, with jobs available for those of any skillset.
  10. Stability- the logistics industry is the backbone of the economy. All companies will always require logistics, so employees can enjoy security that those in other sectors may not.

A career in logistics could change your life by giving you freedom, flexibility and growth not offered from other jobs. To change your life today, check out our courses.


Innovative Approaches to Supply Chain Quality


By Morgan International Staff Writers

Supply chain management and quality control can become challenging and predictable at times. There are some high technology, innovative industries where advances in supply chains are being seen through new approaches and methodologies. Also, in a time of natural disaster, there’s certain ways to make your supply chains more sustainable and reactive to change, with a few of these ways outlined below:


  • Spreading best practice- many industries are heavily regulated, and it’s up to companies to ensure that their products will be used safely and effectively further down the supply chain. This also sets higher product standards and paves the way for innovative manufacturing methods.
  • Physical risks- practically looking at your suppliers helps to mitigate risk. For instance, start out by identifying on Google Maps where your suppliers are located. Are they in areas of potential natural disaster? This exercise helps visualise where your suppliers are, and is a cost effective method of analysing the quality and security of your supply chains.
  • Environmental- design your product so it’s environmentally friendly and reduces its environmental impact throughout its lifecycle. This could be done by changing transportation methods, reducing packaging, making it recyclable and other innovative ways to create an efficient supply chain.
  • Assembly- Ensure the product is (where possible) designed for ease of assembly and disassembly, as well as reuse. This could lead to innovative ways of transporting a product, leading to reduced costs and higher productivity.
  • Offer valuable data- increase the availability of data in your supply chain. Finding reliable data is something that will set you apart from competitors. This data is estimated to increase by about 50% every year.


Thinking innovatively and increasing supply chain quality can give you a competitive advantage. To find out more about how to learn about your supply chains, enrol in one of our courses today.


Keep your supply chain clean


By Morgan International Staff Writers

Corporate social responsibility is an important consideration for most businesses, and this extends to the supply chain. There are a number of aspects to CSR such as sustainability, environmental, and the treatment of labour. From an altruistic perspective, one would hope that organisations want to avoid having a ‘dirty’ supply chain. However for those not interested in the greater good, they will undoubtedly be driven by the reputational damage and potential loss of profit.


Unfortunately, many businesses are attracted to low cost suppliers and fail to pay much notice until some kind of revelation derails the supply chain. Examples of issues uncovered are child labour, slave labour and illegal dumping of waste. With supply chains becoming increasingly complex, how can an organisation ensure its supply chain is clean and keep it that way?


  • Due diligence

Do your homework. When you speak to a supplier make sure you understand the details of their business model, including the make-up of their workforce, their methods of disposal, and their holistic approach to CSR. Ask to see policies and procedural documents and thoroughly review them. Don’t just take the suppliers word for it though – undertake references and also perform site visits before awarding the business. It is important to speak to workers and ask questions such as ‘how many hours do you work per week’ and ‘how are you treated by your employer?’


  • Have a contract

Once you have performed due diligence and have decided you want to work with the supplier, make sure you have a contract in place which outlines your expectations for the performance of the supplier. Very often this states compliance with the company’s own CSR policy. It is also important to have the right to audit, and terminate the contract if there is a significant breach of expectations.


  • Review, report and improve

Do not forget that things change and so do the practices of your suppliers. You need to regularly review your suppliers and report on any issues and request improvements. You may also want to consider involving a third party certifier such as Fair Trade.


In Summary

As supply chains become increasingly complex and very often are tiered, it can be challenging to ensure that dirty practices are not being employed. However with some robust process, policies and procedures it is possible to be assured of a clean supply chain.