ICT vendors praised in Gartner supply chain rankings


ICT vendors praised in Gartner supply chain rankings

Alex Scroxton

The vendor community was heavily represented in Gartner's 2011 Supply Chain Top 25 rankings, released today to mark the analyst house's Supply Chain Executive Conference in the US.

The annual survey aims to raise awareness of supply chain discipline and how it impacts businesses, and according to Gartner, companies are moving away from the notion of 'supply chain' to one of 'value chain', with an increasing span of control of their supply chain organisations.

"The old image of a supply chain organisation limited to either inbound materials management or logistics, with procurement, planning, manufacturing and customer service as totally separate functions is facing," said Gartner research vice president Debra Hofman.

"What's replacing it is a supply chain organisation that includes the functions of plan, source, make and deliver.

"It also increasingly includes functions such as customer service and new product launch, and links them through the cross-functional processes and roles that are so critical to being demand-driven," she continued.

At the top of the chart was Apple, followed by Dell, with RIM in fourth place. Also in the top 10 were Cisco, which suffered major supply chain problems last year, and Samsung.

Putting in an appearance lower down the table were Microsoft, IBM, Intel and HP.

According to Gartner the firms that made the list had taken some very clear lessons from the recession, one of them being the need for supply chain resilience.

Analysts pointed to firms such as Cisco and RIM as those that have actively designed structures to create and expand resiliency within both their own supply chains and those of their partners.

"The key isn't whether a company owns all the pieces of the network - it's how well it controls the outcome of the activities that take place in the network," said Hofman.

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