COTS a Mixed Bag for Defense Spending

The U.S. Department of Defense funding is likely to be one of the ongoing casualties of the government’s budget restraints. Uncertainty around government spending has many program managers pulling back on important battlefield management systems (BMS), according to research firm and consultancy Frost & Sullivan. As defense budgets tighten, research and development (R&D) on BMS…

Xilinx-Flextronics: Just the Facts

When news of Xilinx’s suit against Flextronics first broke, the details alleged fraudulent transactions among Xilinx, Flex and two end-customers. The distribution industry, a key player in the global supply chain, wasn’t mentioned in the press release. In the weeks since, EPS readers have provided a lot of feedback, criticism and opinions and the trade…

Smith & Associates: Independent but Quality Obsessed

Many high-tech companies — and rock bands — are famous for being started in garages.  The $586 million distributor N.F. Smith & Associates had a similar beginning, except it was out of a living room. “Whenever I think about our start-up today, I remember for an eight-year period we had huge challenges: we were undercapitalized,…

Value Optimization and a Holistic Approach to Reverse Logistics

Growing your business value is about value optimization.  A foundational component of value optimization is creating and implementing solutions or systems.  In recent years companies have spent millions of dollars on investing in systems to track and report on their reverse logistics efforts and practices.  The reality is that many of these systems are inadequate…

6 Spend Management Tips for Success

Defined as “the way companies control and optimize the money they spend,” spend management is a best practice that can yield a wide range of benefits for purchasing organizations. It encompasses the full purchasing lifecycle — from sourcing goods and selecting suppliers to setting up contracts and paying suppliers — and helps buyers take a…

ISM: Procurement Savings Miss the Mark

 When OEMs began implementing practices such as just-in-time (JIT) and build-to-order (BTO), analysts began to look at the supply chain as a possible profit center rather than a cost. Yet, a survey conducted by the Institute of Supply Management indicates that procurement – one of the key functions in the supply chain – remains primarily…

Top 10 Electronics Supply Chain Risks

The global electronics supply chain will this year confront again some of its old demons and dozens of new ones, ranging from natural disasters to man-made misadventures, management blunders, troubled acquisitions and failing to anticipate and respond to changing market conditions. So far, though, nothing on the horizon indicates the electronics industry should be bracing…