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Supply Chain Graphic of the Week: Revisiting the Gartner Pace Model for Supply Chain Software Innovation


New Advanced Supply Chain Analytics are a Cornerstone of Gartner's "Systems of Innovation" Layer

Oct. 12, 2017
SCDigest Editorial Staff

Gartner developed what it calls its "Pace" model of supply chain applications around 2012, recommending that companies "layer" their approach to supply chain software by the clockspeed of the challenges or opportunities they are trying to address.

Why bring that model up in the context of our current Supply Chain Graphic of the Week? Because in a Videocast from SCDigest and the Supply Chain Television Channel earlier in the week, LLamasoft executive Tony Brzoznowski used that Gartner framework to drive the conversation around supply chain design solutions and emerging analytics platforms - both of which Brzoznowski would place in the "systems of innovation" category.


LLamasoft's rendition of the Pace model framework is shown below:



In great summary, "systems of record" in Gartner's model refer to application areas such as ERP, master data management, product lifecyle management and more, including supply chain-focused applications such as Warehouse Management and Distributed Order Management.


SCDigest isn't so sure the categorization of those last two is always right, as they can in ouur view of be systems of "differentiation," which includes many of the supply chain planning systems we've hard now for decades - some of which in our view can become sytems of record over time if processes and technology are not refreshed.


So what's in the top category, systems of innovation? These are really custom or custom-like applications that naturally enough support real innovation - not continuous improvement. Increasingly, that includes various advanced anaytics, and many applications that generally support "digitization" strategies.


The key point is this: you need a portfolio of software across each layer, you need to undertand what solutions you have or may develop fit into which category, and most - important of all - the management and governance of each layer must be different.


"Most application teams have avoided the problem of delivering at variable speeds by simply defaulting to the slowest approach - the systems of record approach - for all systems," Gartner observed in a research note on this topic a few years.


Brzoznowski and SCDigest editor Dan Gilmore have great discussion on this topic during the Videocast, which is available on demand and can be accessed here: Supply Chain Optimization Hits and Misses  and a Look Ahead to 2018.


Any Feedback on our Supply Chain Graphic of the Week? Let us know your thoughts at the Feedback section below.


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