On Thursday 8th October, the Logistics Achiever Awards were held in Johannesburg at the Monte Casino Ballroom. Regarded as the ‘Oscars’ for the local supply chain and logistics industry, the annual Logistics Achiever Awards recognise professionalism and excellence in the effective application of strategic, tactical and operational logistics and supply chain management principles, concepts, and practices in Southern Africa. The awards include Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum, and are designed to encourage industry players to review, evaluate and upgrade their current logistics and supply chain management practices.
This year, Barloworld Logistics was a finalist, and was awarded a Silver Award for its Aspen entry. This entry essentially showcased the company’s ability to design a smart supply chain solution that solved a unique industry challenge – with measurable results that positively impacted the client’s position in the market.
The Aspen Challenge
“The African pharmaceutical industry is a kaleidoscope of public and private sector businesses, each with their own unique and often conflicting nuances,” explains Kate Stubbs, Barloworld Logistics. “This highly dynamic and volatile environment, coupled with regulated production and storage activities, strong competition and significant shelf life considerations, demanded a sound supply chain strategy.”
Indeed, the key challenge was that the complexity of flow through the supply network had resulted in an imbalance (when considering logistics costs) in relation to the service offering to customers. As a result, the logistics spend was considered too high; risks inherent in the supply chain were not effectively covered; and a more agile supply solution was needed…
Together with Barloworld Logistics, Aspen applied a network modeling approach, using CAST to define the optimal flow and configuration within a particular scenario - while trading off the total cost of logistics to achieve a particular service offering to market.
“The least cost supply chain for current service levels was identified, as well as the highest possible service level using the current supply chain configuration,” adds Kirk Nash, Aspen. “Lastly, a blue sky model was built to identify an optimal network. Ultimately, the various scenarios were compared through considering total logistics costs, proximity to customers, inventory availability and supply chain risk in operational, physical, financial and demand terms.”
Top Line Growth
According to Kirk Nash, the project resulted in significant cost savings and top-line growth. Analysis revealed that Aspen started to grow faster than the market, right after the supply network had been re-configured - with exponential growth occurring once change management activities had been completed.
“This is a tremendous achievement, and the Award reflects the fact that Barloworld Logistics is focused on providing smart supply chain solutions to clients and partners across Southern Africa.”
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