Why it matters
The old restrictions on the way we work and operate arenow redundant. Organisations can choose the best of everything, no matter where in the globe it’s located.
As globalisation extends operations, supply-chainvisibility rises up the priority order of many organisations.Organisations want access to data — in whatever forms itexists — across the supply chain, without fail.“Establishing end-to-end visibility over global supplychains is essential as supply chains are becomingincreasingly volatile and disrupted,” said Keith Sherry,general manager, Supply Chain Solutions, BT GlobalServices. He added: “Whether due to natural disasters,such as earthquakes or severe weather conditions, civil
unrest or the increasingly demanding global consumer,
visibility that extends fully upstream and downstream inthe supply chain helps deliver real-time, accurate in-storeavailability that maximises sales.”
“We must ensure that the global
market is embedded in broadly-shared values and practices thatreflect global social needs, andthat all the world’s people sharethe benefits of globalisation.”
Former Secretary-General of the United Nations
Simple supply lines
When organisations have access to key information fromacross the supply chain they can increase agility andresponsiveness, reacting even faster to unforeseen eventsand making informed business decisions in order to avoiddisruption to their supply chains.
is one of the world’s leading providers of professionalprinting and document management services. Withheadquarters at Venlo in Holland, it has a global presenceand is active in more than 100 countries, employing some22,000 people worldwide.Corry Wouters, Vice President for ICT Operations at Océ,said: “As a global player, we need a fast and reliable widearea network (WAN) to enable our operating companiesworldwide to function cohesively through an integratedsupply chain.”However, the company’s WAN was based mainly on legacytechnology sourced from local service providers. Thisarrangement created short-falls in both bandwidth andflexibility, and offered only point-to-point connections. Itwas also increasingly expensive to manage and administer,so Océ decided to reassess its WAN requirements. CorryWouters said: “Our primary objectives were to increasebandwidth, reduce cost, and improve network resilienceand flexibility — while working with a single Europeansupplier.”Now the company outsources the management of WANservices on its MPLS platform to BT. The new network serves80 locations in 20 countries, enabling different traffictypes to share a single, converged network. It also allowsimportant traffic, such as voice and video, to be prioritisedover less time-sensitive data such as email and web.BT’s MPLS network provides much higher bandwidth,improving application performance and boostingproductivity. In addition, with any-to-any connectivityreplacing the former point-to-point arrangements,network resilience is significantly improved; costs aredown too. Corry Wouters said: “We were saving comparedto our previous network costs. And because we haveconsolidated our network with a single supplier we aresaving even more through efficient management andadministration.”