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First Thoughts
  By Dan Gilmore
  October 9, 2003  
John Hill “Unplugged”  

Welcome to a new feature of SupplyChainDigest, an occasional series of “no holds barred” interviews with supply chain management thought leaders.

Our first pundit is John Hill, one of the true pioneers of the WMS and data collection industries and an extremely popular writer and speaker on these and related topics. From his role in the 1980’s as the CEO of Logisticon, one of the first providers of real-time WMS systems, to his current position as a principal at ESYNC, a leading systems integrator, John Hill has worked with hundreds of companies over the years. His opinions are always worth hearing.

We covered a lot of ground with John, and his thoughts as usual were provocative and personal. Key takeaways:

While the current RFID hype may be overblown, the technology is real and offers benefits in many applications outside Wal-Mart compliance.
While WMS providers offer increasingly mature, packaged software, the problem is that too few companies take full advantage of those capabilities.
Part of the problem is that software providers just aren’t providing the depth of talent needed to maximize deployment effectiveness.
Users could help themselves too by being less rushed to make decisions, making sure they really understand their processing requirements, and getting better input from users on the floor.

We asked him what three things companies could do right now to improve their supply chains. His response:

1. Focus on building total team ownership of any initiative from Day 1.
2. Taking a detailed approach to profiling current operations and defining requirements.
3. Recognizing that supply chain execution projects require significant resources and budget accordingly.

Click here for a full transcript of our Q&A with John Hill. It will be worth your time.

Agree or disagree with John Hill’s perspectives? How can users or vendors improve their processes to achieve better results?


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