Understanding the Role of Chief Supply Chain Officer

supply chain, chief supply chain officer, Illinois business law attorneyWhen you think about a company’s purchase or procurement department, what do you picture? For many years, individuals or teams responsible for maintaining appropriate inventory levels were relegated to backrooms and musty basement offices. Fast forward to today’s high-speed, high-demand business landscape, and those same supply managers are now considered integral parts of their companies’ success. While your business may not need to grant someone the title of “Chief Supply Chain Officer,”—and a qualified Naperville business lawyer can help you decide if you should—it is important to understand how effective management of such responsibilities can benefit your company.

More than Just a Buyer

Whether imputed with the official title or not, the chief supply chain officer is responsible for providing the company with necessary goods and raw materials, while continually analyzing the process for cost-savings opportunities. He or she works with supply partners, including manufacturers, distributors, and group purchasing organizations to maximize the value of each and every buying decision. Negotiation is very large component of the job, as the supply chain manager must balance the company’s need for materials with budgetary concerns and long-term sustainability.

In larger high-profile companies, the chief supply chain officer may also be responsible for decisions that directly impact the enterprise’s public image. Consider that when the fast-food giant McDonald’s announced its intentions this week to transition to cage-free eggs in thousands of stores in the U.S. and Canada over the next few years, it was McDonald’s North America Chief Supply Chain Officer Marion Gross who was at the forefront of the announcement.

The Supply Chain Matters from the Beginning

The rise in importance of the supply chain management is connected with the growth of outsourcing. Companies such as government contractor Raytheon are more commonly creating agreements to use suppliers in particular communities to secure partnerships. This means, however, that the design of a new product must incorporate components that are available from such a supplier or able to be reasonably manufactured. Thus, Raytheon’s supply chain managers must be involved in the early stages of the design process, offering insight to developers on the availability of components, ensuring that a particular design is feasible before being presented to suppliers or contract manufacturer.

Develop a Cost-Savings Strategy

Your company may not be large enough to need a separate individual or an entire team focused on supply chain management. In fact, the role of chief supply chain officer may fall entirely under your own purview. The applicable principles, however, are very important to any business, as, regardless of title, maximizing your purchase value and establishing reliable supplier relationships are vital to your success.

If you have questions about improving your supply chain management strategies, contact an experienced Naperville business law attorney. At the Gierach Law Firm, we are committed to helping our commercial clients thrive and look forward to working with you to expand your profitability. Call 630-756-1160 to schedule an appointment today.




Why your company needs a chief supply chain officer