Supply Chain Now
Episode 889

You know the old adage - two heads are better than one. Well, yes, but all of the information still has to get into one head for that decision to be made.

-Shannon Vaillancourt, President of RateLinx

Episode Summary

Data is the raw material that makes effective operations possible and determines the growth trajectory a company will follow. That said, the challenges of managing that data are significant – starting with where the data is stored and how it is accessed. If that data remains segmented, it will be impossible to get a full, clear picture of the business.

Supply Chain Now’s Scott Luton and Greg White recently welcomed Greg Cornette, Director of Corporate Logistics for Flair Packaging, Shannon Vaillancourt, President of RateLinx, and Nate Endicott, SVP of Global Sales, Marketing & Partnerships at RateLinx, to discuss several use cases that illustrate the process of getting and the value of having accurate, complete, and timely data.

In this episode, created in collaboration with a Supply Chain Now livestream audience, Greg, Shannon, and Nate discuss:
• What integrated data means and why it is so crucial to fast, accurate decision making
• Ways that integrated data goes beyond improved decision making to support overall accountability
• The reality that business is not going back to the way it worked before the pandemic, and the technological support that will be required to thrive going forward

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:00:03):

Welcome to supply chain. Now the voice of global supply chain supply chain now focuses on the best in the business for our worldwide audience, the people, the technologies, the best practices, and today’s critical issues. The challenges and entities Stay tuned to hear from those making global business happen right here on supply chain now.

Scott Luton (00:00:33):

Hey, good morning. Good afternoon. And good evening, wherever you are. Scott Luton and Greg White with you here on supply chain. Now, welcome to today’s live stream, Greg, how we doing?

Greg White (00:00:42):

I’m doing well. You know what? I wonder, having watched that our sequence many times, I wonder how many people get a Hanker in for a di pickle. <laugh> when they’re watching this show. Right?

Scott Luton (00:00:53):


Greg White (00:00:53):

That is what that is. Right. That’s what is being packaged up, I think is pickles.

Scott Luton (00:00:58):

Right? You know, I have, I’ve looked at that a thousand times. Evidently I haven’t looked at it as closely as you have, so I will be

Greg White (00:01:05):

Select today’s like today I saw it for the first time. I know. Right.

Scott Luton (00:01:09):

<laugh> all right. So, Hey folks, on today’s show, we’re diving into not pickles. That’s the pickle show maybe is next week, but we’re diving into the immense value of integrated data. And if your operation hasn’t unleashed its power, then you’re missed out big time. Is that right, Greg?

Greg White (00:01:25):

Totally. In this day and age, you have to be talking to other organizations over other parts of your own organization. You have to be sharing information. And that’s really what we’re, we’re gonna talk about today and what you can do with it and the hindrances you have without

Scott Luton (00:01:43):

That’s right. That is right. Big show lined up. We’ve got a great panel, Nate, Greg and Shannon will be joining us here momentarily. So Greg, we’re gonna dive right in. Let’s say hello to a few folks and then we’re gonna dive right in. All right. So let’s see, Hey, we’re talking data and technology and supply chain. Of course. Kevon’s gonna be here with us.

Greg White (00:02:03):

Right? Thank goodness. Right?

Scott Luton (00:02:06):

So Keon welcome in

Greg White (00:02:08):

This one.

Scott Luton (00:02:09):

And he’s tuned in via Facebook today. Oftentimes I think Keon tunes in via LinkedIn, but folks, you know, Facebook, the Facebook livestream app is easy to work with. So Keon, great to have you here. Todd Elliot, he’s thinking of a burger. You mentioned pickles. Okay.

Greg White (00:02:25):

Right. <laugh> so I’m a grilled onions, steel, pickle, and mustard burger person. So not, yes, yes. We’re trying to turn this into a food show, but

Scott Luton (00:02:38):

I’ll have one of each of those. Let’s do it, man. So Todd, thanks for making us hungry around here out. Great to have you back from hall via LinkedIn. She’s been a part of a variety of live streams here. And Greg she’s been bringing some, uh, hard hitting POV lately, huh?

Greg White (00:02:53):

Yeah, no doubt.

Scott Luton (00:02:54):

Libby of course Libby hope this finds you well tuned in via LinkedIn. Appreciate all of your good work. Tempus is back with us from Dallas Fort worth Tempus. Who Greg you remember of the connection who she’s named after.

Greg White (00:03:09):

It’s not Tempus Bledso, is it? Yes. Yes. Oh it is Tempus B. So, oh, that’s right. Oh right. We went through that on a buzz. I think that’s right.

Scott Luton (00:03:17):

It’s been on, but Tempus welcome. And we look forward to your perspective throughout a great show here today. Ts square that’s right. Ts squared who holds down the Fort force on YouTube is tuned in as said earlier data is the super of the day, every day. I <laugh>, I love that, man. Okay. You know, sometimes folks, if your comment shows up like this, it just means you’ve got a privacy setting on your LinkedIn profile. You can check that out, but hello to this user tuned in via LinkedIn from Israel. Great to have you here today. And just so we know what we’re talking about, temp is confirming that Cosby show throwback. One of my favorite shows, especially that, of course, the episode, uh, Greg, if you remember, when they played the RA, they lip sync to the Ray Charles song for their grandparents, one of the best episodes in history. For sure.

Greg White (00:04:09):

I’m gonna have to go back to that.

Scott Luton (00:04:11):

Okay. Yeah. Check with that with the role of the footage and this is

Greg White (00:04:13):

Gotta be on YouTube, right? Everything is yes.

Scott Luton (00:04:16):

And by the way, this is LDA LDA. Great to see you here. Be in. Okay. Well Greg, with no further due, we’ve got a hard hitting panel here today. You ready?

Greg White (00:04:26):

Yeah. Yeah. We’ve been talking a lot of data. Let’s do it some more.

Scott Luton (00:04:30):

<laugh> well, Hey folks, you not, not gonna only wanna miss this conversation here. We’ve got three folks, three pros that know been there, done that. And you’re gonna walk away with, with probably 17 pages. So let’s welcome in Greg Cornett, director, corporate logistics with flair, flexible packaging corporation and Shannon Valon cor president founder with great links and his colleague Nate Inco, senior vice president global sales and alliances. Hey, Hey Shannon, Nate, Greg, how we doing? Good to see you Greg

Greg White (00:05:00):

Full house today, right?

Scott Luton (00:05:02):

That’s right. Beats three of a con. Uh that’s right. Every single day. Yeah. <laugh> great to have, uh, have you with us, Shannon, Nate and Greg. So folks, we’re gonna have a little bit of fun on the front end. We’re gonna get to integrated data and a ton of insights there from this, this powerful panel. We have assembled here, but, but let’s have a little fun first because Greg did, you know Greg white. It is national superhero day.

Greg White (00:05:29):

I did know that. Yes, because you told me <laugh> so <laugh>

Scott Luton (00:05:35):

Well, you know, we, we tend to do that a little bit around here. So what I wanna, and we’re gonna start with Greg Cornett. So Greg, you’re gonna be your Otis next and lead off hitter. And the question here before we get to the heavy lifting is who is your favorite superhero of all time?

Greg Cornette (00:05:50):

So I really enjoy the Marvel movies, but I’m gonna go old school. So I’m gonna go back to the early two thousands, uh, TV show alias, and I’m gonna pick Sidney Bristo. And uh, if anybody’s ever watched that series, uh, very intelligent, uh, actress, uh, full of action, uh, to the point that unfortunately I have two boys, but one of ’em is gonna be named Sydney if they, so that’s my a superhero. I

Scott Luton (00:06:18):

Love it. Okay. That’s yeah, it is a good one, Greg and, and it’s also kind of non-traditional so I love that. And so folks in the cheap seats and the sky boxes, whatever we’re referring to it as today, we’d love to hear your input on your favorite superhero. And again, welcome here today. Okay, Greg, I wanna, let’s go. Let’s go with, uh, Shannon valor next. So Shannon, your favorite superhero

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:06:43):

Boy, that’s a good one. I’d say I’m probably more of a Batman type of fan. I grew up in Chicago watching that all the time on WGN. Just kinda, I love Batman. There’s just something about him. Probably cuz he, he is just a real person has no real superhero, you know, he has no, no real skill. Right. Other than, you know, the stuff that he kind of creates and all that. So it’s kind of, I don’t know. I’ve just been a big, big Batman fan, my whole life

Scott Luton (00:07:12):

I’m with you. And uh, Greg white, we’ve talked before about that 1989 version. Of course. When you got Jack Nicholson playing joker, if there’s not a better, uh, casting selection. Right, right Greg.

Greg White (00:07:24):

Yeah, no kidding. I, I think some of the, some of the additional characters in Batman have become iconic as well. Even the Batman TV show, right. That you’re talking about Shannon. Yep.

Scott Luton (00:07:36):

SA Romero.

Greg White (00:07:38):


Scott Luton (00:07:38):

Played joker. And the, the future Rocky trainer. I can’t remember his name. You’re talking about uh, penguin. Who was that? Who played Rocky’s well, I’m sure someone S T

Greg White (00:07:50):

Squared knows. I’m sure. T squared knows

Scott Luton (00:07:52):

<laugh> okay. Come through for uh, Burges Meredith Burges Meredith. There you go. Okay. That’s right. All right. So we’re all big bat fans as well. And then Nate are cleanup hitter today. And Greg, I’m gonna ask you too, but Nate, your favorite superhero, who is it,

Nate Endicott (00:08:06):

Man? I just never believed in someone being able to shoot, you know, spiderwebs out of their hands <laugh> so I was a big Hulk fan love, seeing him turn green and get after it. But um, to me that was more realistic than, you know, flying

Greg White (00:08:23):

You. Wouldn’t like to see Nate when he is angry. <laugh>

Scott Luton (00:08:28):

You beat me, Tina punch Greg white, but Hey, we could all relate, especially these challenging times and by the way, going back to Batman, lots of jokers in global industry and global supply chain. So, all right, so we’ve got Sydney, we’ve got Batman, we’ve got Hulk. And then Greg white, your favorite superhero.

Greg White (00:08:47):

Well, I mean, since we’re talking about the appropriate and integrated use of data, I’m gonna go with iron man. Huh? I mean, who, who utilized data more effectively than iron man? That’s right. You know, just a regular guy, just your average billionaire in a suit. <laugh> so, and if anyone doubts that Elon Musk is, is building himself an actual iron man suit. I think you’re, I think you’re gonna be surprised

Scott Luton (00:09:13):

<laugh> well, you know, in the movie, I, I never read the Ironman comment books, but man Morton, I think his plays

Greg White (00:09:20):

Robert county Jr.

Scott Luton (00:09:21):

Yes, he is so good in that role. Perfect.

Greg White (00:09:24):

For the role.

Scott Luton (00:09:24):

Yeah. Agreed. Okay. Scott Boudreau says maybe not a superhero, but a cartoon character inspector gadget, an ultimate warehouse worker. Hey, I’d love to that, Scott. Let’s see Jose, welcome back Jose. I think Jose’s in Atlanta. He was with us last week of via LinkedIn, Superman I’m with you Jose, those Christopher Reeve, the Superman movies were iconic and, and a formative part of my upbringing gone way too soon. My

Greg White (00:09:51):

Mannered Clark Kent by day and oh yeah. Into a phone booth.

Scott Luton (00:09:55):


Greg White (00:09:56):

Oh my gosh. How would Superman change these days? No phone booth.

Scott Luton (00:10:02):

<laugh> well, so Greg Shannon, Nate and Greg to Gregs today. One last thing about Superman Nate, cause in, in one of those movies is either the first or second one, you know, Superman loses powers as Clark Kent. And he goes to a di or gets beat up by somebody. And then there at the end of the movie, he goes back in after he’s regained all of his Superman powers and beats up that guy. Right. And the whole restaurant is looking at him and he goes, I’ve been pushing his glasses up, working out and it is so it is such a perfect scene. And of course Christopher Reeves was perfect for it. But anyway, I digres, we could talk about superhero the rest of the day. We’ve got some heavy, hidden supply chain tech data conversations, uh, to be had. Oola says currently watching Smallville, Superman all day. That’s a great series. So speaking of Superman, Shannon Valon court, Superman at supply chain tech, Hey, you like that segue <laugh> we wanna talk about any great data. And so we’ve got, we’ve got a lot of expertise in this panel here between two Gregs, Nate and Shannon. But before we get into, you know, some of y’all’s experiences, I wanna level set and kind of define what we’re talking about when we say integrated data. So Shannon let’s start there.

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:11:13):

I think, I mean, I keep it pretty simple. I’d say integrated is really just having all your information in one spot. So I think the challenge is thinking about it from the perspective of what is the topic that you’re trying to capture, you know, so is the data that you have fit for its intended purpose. So if it is, you’ve probably got integrated data and that’s where you’re just pulling together all the different pieces that way in one spot, you have the full picture. And I think that’s where I kind of, you know, always look at it and say, do we have integrated data? And it’s like, well, do we have everything in one spot that, that answers all the questions that we possibly could be asking ourselves about this given topic. So it’s like, that’s, that’s my litness test for, uh, integrated data.

Scott Luton (00:12:07):

Love that Greg white, would you hear there?

Greg White (00:12:10):

Well, I think we have to capture so much. We do capture so much data these days and, and there is yet more to capture, but I think making good use of that to, you know, is what’s critical, as Shannon says, centralizing it, putting in a place, a repository where it’s accessible and then accessing it for the right purposes. I feel like I need to say access again, but the, I did it using it for the right purposes. But I think also using it as a connection mechanism between departments, between people, between companies, right? Yep. That is so available and so important. And you know, I don’t know if everybody knows what Nate and Shannon do at rate lengths, but it’s a big part of what they do connecting shippers to the transportation markets and, and beyond of course, and we’re gonna hear some more about that, but I think the biggest power is between enterprises. These days is, is driving data back and forth,

Scott Luton (00:13:06):

Ton of opportunity. You can’t just collect, you gotta act on it and get returns. You can results. So, and I’m gonna circle around to Greg C and Nate in just as, but Shannon one additional follow up question then we’ll get other folks take is once you have integrated data, talk about some of the potential opportunities.

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:13:22):

Well, I think, you know, think about your daily life. Everything that you do all day every day is you make decisions, right? And in order to do that, you have to collect all the information of the data and you’re integrating it together in your head to make the decision. You know, the old adage, you know, two heads are better than one. It’s like, well, yes, but all of the information still has to get into one head for that decision to be made. And I think that’s where people maybe miss misunderstand what to do with all this stuff. So that’s where, you know, what can you do with integrated data? I think you can make, uh, better decisions cause everybody makes decisions all day long, right? You just can make better ones. And I think you can also make them faster, uh, when you’ve got integrated data. And that I think is really the bottom line is when you have that, you’re just making decisions much faster, much more confidently. And I think that’s where you’re getting the better results. So

Scott Luton (00:14:27):

Excellent point Shannon, better and faster, man. He’s like getting your cake and eat it too. Greg Cornett. I wanna bring you in of course with flare flexible packaging, he’s doing some really cool things out there. When you think about integrated data and opportunities associated there, what comes to your mind? Greg?

Greg Cornette (00:14:42):

I’m very similar to what Shannon I was saying. The term I use is one point of truth. So taking multiple disparate systems, bringing em in similar formats, um, similar way of, uh, collecting the data and putting it into a usable format. So, you know, I know personally in my career we spend a lot of time, uh, pulling information from multiple sources and then trying to format them, align them all. So if you have them all in one system it’s efficient and it’s also much more proactive, uh, for the organization. So it’s one place to get that truth.

Scott Luton (00:15:17):

Love that. All right, then I’m coming to you next, but before I do thank you T square, that Superman moment was Superman too. I appreciate that. John Perry, favorite superhero is besides Scott Luton, your two kind Spiderman and you need a good spotty sense and chain these days. Very true. Isn’t that

Nate Endicott (00:15:32):

The truth?

Scott Luton (00:15:33):

<laugh> Aaron Peterson. Hey Aaron. Great to see ya. Shannon, if you remember, when we met together in person out in Arizona a couple years ago, I also sat down same day with Aaron Peterson. Who’s doing some big things in supply chain. He says, once you have integrated data, you have easy available, fast connections between data stores, better customer and partner experience. Also excellent point. And finally, uh, T squared says integrated data equals critical and consistent data pieces at the right place at the right time, from the right picture to make the right decision, man, very eloquent there and clean data. He says that’s wishful thinking. Okay. So Nate, when you think it could integrated data, same question, but what’s your take the opportunity’s abound, right?

Nate Endicott (00:16:16):

Absolutely. I mean, from an integrated data standpoint and go to that last one where, you know, data quality wishful thinking. But I think that’s the, the piece that I think enterprises are finally waving their hand or waving the white flag and saying, Hey, we surrender where they’re not built for that data quality piece. But when you have integrated data and you have systems integrated together, um, there are data quality engines and cleansing engines that can be ran that actually give you, um, good data. So I think, uh, as one customer said, man, um, we were still Aring we’re we had data, but we’re starving for intelligence. How do you turn that integrated data into insights so that you don’t have to become data minors and data quality experts in inside. Instead you can react, uh, very proactively and go do maybe what data’s telling you to do, or at least have opportunities inside the, that you can take to the business, uh, versus spending a ton of manual efforts on finding that man, we spent three months on this exercise or two weeks on this exercise, I’m trying to ask a question or answer a question that C level’s asking me, and I don’t have the answer or I’m giving ’em the wrong results.

Scott Luton (00:17:34):

Excellent. A lot of truth in what Nate just shared, Greg white, before we go on to truth and consequences, I wanna give, uh, Greg, what, what was <laugh>? What was the most important thing you heard there from Nate, Greg and Shannon?

Greg White (00:17:47):

Well, I think that it’s the it’s that we have to capture data, right? First of all, some of, some of what Shannon said is a lot of data still remains in people’s heads and with the great generational change that’s going on in, in the workforce, we have to capture that knowledge and we have to impart that knowledge to the technologies that we have and you know, to the point that everyone has made it’s, it’s not, it’s, it’s faster decisions. It it’s better decisions. And it’s also more consistent decisions because that data from three years ago, uh, you know, assuming that the situation doesn’t change substantially can inform a decision for the next decade, right? If it’s something that is, that happens frequently, the thing we have to remember is that humans might react to that, that input totally differently, depending on their situation. But technology reacts to that input consistently. Right? So if we, you know, if the sun comes up, technology reacts, the same sun comes up. I think we’ll, we all know we don’t all react the same every day. <laugh>

Scott Luton (00:18:52):

No, we don’t. No, we don’t Greg. All right. It’s a lot of good stuff there. And chin, I’m gonna come to you next with, as we start to talk about consequences, but before we do Kaine says, I think features are more critical than instances observations, rather in supply chains, we do not share enough data on feature with partners. Excellent. Pointon okay. So Shannon, we were talking about truth earlier. Now we’re gonna talk about consequences. Um, what are the con consequences in your mind, Shannon of not using an integrated data approach?

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:19:26):

I think it’s pretty simple in, in business. Money is lost. It’s very simple. <affirmative>, you know, when I was, uh, in college, you know, with, you know, getting an engineering degree, Al engineering degree, a professor sat me down my advisor and he’s like, you know, you know, there’s two things that happen out in the real world. When you get a real job, he’s like either people die or money is lost. Hmm. He said, you’re gonna have one of those jobs. And he’s said, I’ll give you a hint. The ones where money is lost is a lot easier than where people die. And I mean, that’s, that’s the consequence right now, we’re in the business of money is lost. Um, so if you don’t have integrated data, you’re losing money. Now the good news is if you don’t have integrated data, you probably aren’t aware of it.

Greg White (00:20:13):

<laugh>, that’s exactly what I was just thinking to one of those. It’s one of those things, careful what you wish about you’re blissfully ignorant, right? It’s like,

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:20:20):

Yeah. Is it okay? Would it be, is it better to not know? Or is it better to know

Scott Luton (00:20:26):

We’re having our matrix moment here? Uh, but Shannon, very eloquent going back to your earlier a point, you know, cause sometimes when mistakes are, you know, not what they could be, you know, we don’t even know how good we have it, Greg Cornett. I wanna bring you in on consequences. What else would you add here?

Greg Cornette (00:20:43):

Poor decisions. And, and it’s, especially in the last two and a half years, it’s not easy to dig yourself out of those poor decisions. So when I, when I look at it, you know, I talk to my team and to my partners, it’s okay to make mistakes. If you’re not making mistakes, you’re not trying hard, but you can’t keep making the same one over and over again. And I, and I think data really ties into that and that becomes our baselines and our metrics for how we do things together in our partnerships.

Scott Luton (00:21:11):

Yep. You know, it’s almost like, uh, what I’m hearing and Nate, I’m coming to you next. It’s almost like we’re voluntarily adding blinders and we may not even know we’re opting and putting those on every day, uh, or constraints by not using an integrated data approach. Uh, Nate, when it comes to consequences, what else would you,

Nate Endicott (00:21:28):

Well, if you don’t have it, it’s hard to hold people accountable. But I think that accountability word is the, uh, a big piece of, you know, having integrated data too, cuz to deliver on your initiatives, you know, you need to hold yourself accountable when you have integrated data, you’re now accountable the organization and there’s things that it is gonna present itself to go out and achieve. But it also helps, but I’d say accountability, lack of accountability would be one.

Scott Luton (00:21:56):

Yep. Excellent point. Nate, Greg white accountability is of course crucial in, you know, maximizing the art of the possible and execution when it comes to global supply chain. But what else would you add or what, what would you reiterate from our panel here?

Greg White (00:22:10):

Well, I mean, aside from the loss of money, which I think is ultimately what we’re all speaking to here, every one of these lack of accountability or lack of knowing or inability to understand the problem, every one of those goes to the bottom line. Uh, but I think that one of the things that really jumps at me from, you know, from the rest of your, you all sharing here is we don’t know what we don’t know in a lot of cases. And, and that’s because if you think about it, we have four generations in the workforce today. One generation grew up making decisions because they just know, or, you know, they didn’t have spread sheets, right? So they, they didn’t have any kind of technology to help them. And it was completely up to them to keep it in their mind or keep it on a piece of paper.

Greg White (00:22:58):

I can’t even imagine what that must have been like to track all of these things. So in a lot of cases, the blind spot is the biggest consequence because certainly you are gonna lose money. But the question is, is it a lot of money or is it a little money? And if you don’t know, you don’t know how much you have to lose. And that is scary as hell in supply chain. And it, you know, and as Greg Cornett said, you know, with, with the last two years of what’s been going on, we’ve seen the consequences in, of not having enough data and of having blind spots and what could happen.

Nate Endicott (00:23:36):

Mm-hmm <affirmative>

Scott Luton (00:23:37):

Excellent point excellent point. All right, we’re gonna come to Greg corn next. I’m gonna share a couple comments first Chad’s talking about, of course he’s echoing, uh, efficient decisions is what the integrated data approach gives you. T-square when it comes to consequences, lost opportunities. Absolutely. Aaron talks about having a lack of integration, creates information silos that make it hard to get a complete picture of how your business is performing, which doesn’t help you out. Of course. And then finally, let’s see here, rowing, it asks a question and maybe we can, we can kind of bake your answer into the rest of the conversation. He’s he’s talking about how this fast data integration, all this digital transition, is it gonna accelerate in the coming future? And he’s referencing some of the generational transfer, so maybe we’ll bake our answers into the rest of the conversation. Okay. So Greg CoreNet, one of my favorite questions that we’re gonna pose here today is your why, you know, what was your, why now you andreia, you were talking about kind of for six months, your, your team was kind of considering some different approaches and then you took that step and walked through the door. So kind of walk us through that if you would.

Greg Cornette (00:24:41):

So we, we have a fairly sophisticated supply chain, um, lot of milestones, uh, I have a E R P that’s gonna project a lot of data, not always in consistent formats. And we were really looking for a partner that could tie all those things together. And frankly, if I was looking at this type of solution five years ago, I don’t, I don’t think it existed. I don’t think there was, uh, an opportunity out there for a partner that could tie it all together. So as we were going through our assessment, uh, our, it was very clear to us when we were going through that rate links gave us the best opportunity to merge systems, to provide the data in a clean format and in a consistent format. So it, it was a fairly easy decision and, you know, we’re just starting at the beginning stages. I I’ve been very happy with where we’re going. I think it gives us the best opportunity for success moving forward. It’s not going to cure all the yields because data’s only good as the source that is coming from. So, you know, I, I believe we’re also as we have the data and you don’t know what you don’t know, um, as we go through that it’s gonna help to make our or organization more efficient also, uh, just ran through the integration.

Scott Luton (00:25:50):

Excellent point. That phrase always gets some high fives from, from the cheap seats. Cause it’s so, it’s so true. Greg is a quick follow up. Greg Cornett talking about the speed of transformation, speed of digital transformation. Do you feel it’s only gonna be accelerating in in the months and years ahead?

Greg Cornette (00:26:06):

Absolutely. It’s when the, uh, cat, when the cat’s out of the bag, um, it, it doesn’t go back in. And so, you know, we’ve been dealing with Pandora’s box for the last three years and, and if anything, I think it’s gonna make the companies that can compete and competing is with the data and leading with the truth. Um, those, these are gonna have the best opportunity for success. Um, but we’re not going back to where we were even three, four years ago. Um, the pace is going to continually increase. And, um, you know, when we, we talk about it’s, you know, our, our customers take us to different places and what are you gonna do to react, to meet that heat? And in the example of rate lengths, I think it gives us the best opportunity to succeed.

Scott Luton (00:26:50):

Wow. Okay. So Greg white, I’m gonna pass you here in just a second as we kind of go back to Shannon, but he mentioned cat outta the bag and the cat’s not going back in willingly, always reminds me of one of my favorite quotes of all time by mark Twain, who says a man carrying a cat by the tail, learned something that he can only learn in that way. And I probably butchered that quote a little bit, but anyway, good old mark Twain. So Greg white, where are we going? <laugh> we’re going next with this panel here?

Greg White (00:27:18):

Well, I mean, we’ve talked a lot about the getting accurate and complete and time timely data and how critical that is to what, you know, what Greg wanted to accomplish with his company, what everybody frankly wants to accomplish with their company. We know it’s a challenge, right? We know it’s a challenge to get those things innate to your point. Sometimes you and Greg, you mentioned this also sometimes you have to live with less than optimal data. That’s the nicest way I can say it, but it becomes an evolution, right? Once you recognize once we know what we didn’t know before, then we start to, we start to adapt that and, and improve it over time. And, and by the way, this whole notion of not going back to where we were, you know, it’s earning season for the big public companies right now, and they continue for the most part to produce record profits.

Greg White (00:28:09):

I think the companies as Greg Cornett just talked about the companies that are embracing technology that are, that are enhancing their data capabilities. They are finding efficiencies that they didn’t have before because they felt their margins were sufficient before. Well, when those margins got crushed during COVID, they acted quickly. Many of them acted quickly to enhance their technology. And now they’re actually making money. And again, to Greg, to your point, they’re not gonna go back to their old blindsided ways of, of doing things. And it’s, it’s paying off literally paying off Inre startings. But for aside from all that, so we know that getting there is tough, right? You’ve gotta, you’ve gotta get complete data. You’ve gotta get it in a timely fashion and you want it as clean as possible, but Shannon, you’ve been, you and I have talked about this a lot and you’ve been doing this well for a while. I don’t wanna say a long time <laugh>, but you’ve been doing this for a while. So, so, so what do you, what have you seen as the challenges as people try to undertake this data integration initiative?

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:29:16):

I mean, the, I guess the biggest, the biggest challenge that we see is about the, the different types of assist systems that are out there, cuz you know, in, in supply chain like it or not, um, supply chain’s always kind of been behind from a system perspective. You know, we talk about integrated data. Like it’s this new thing it’s not new at all. Right. They’ve been using it on the sales and marketing side for longer than we know. And that’s what usually drives the companies is the marketing and sales side, you know, get all the data together. Let’s see how things are performing and then, okay, let’s put more of that product out there or Hey, do this type of, uh, market again because it really worked well. But then on the supply chain side, everybody’s just like, yeah, whatever, man, just, just move freight, just get it moving.

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:30:08):

Yeah. You know, the old strategy was just yell louder, you know, isn’t that, isn’t that how you do everything, you just yell more. Uh, and you know, that’s how it was. You know, back when I started, uh, industry, it was just a lot of, it was, it was brutal to say the least. So I’d say that that’s the challenge is the systems that, that we are integrating with were never built for this at all. So the real timeliness of things has to be, um, has to be faked a little bit, um, in order to mm-hmm <affirmative> get what we’re looking for. And then, you know, the, the one thing that I think is, is not thought about very much is that our system has to, to manufacture a lot of data. You know, you know, one of the things we talk about is, you know, we’re, we’re definit on the service side with our customers, but we’re also on the manufacturing side and, and our system manufactures a lot of missing data points that helps fill the gaps because the, the old systems just don’t have it.

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:31:16):

So that’s where you can take, you can take all these pieces, uh, from these systems, put it all together, you’re still gonna have gap. And that’s where our system has, has bridged those gaps filled those gaps by manufacturing, the data that’s missing. You know, we talk about, you know, what don’t, you know, and the biggest thing that, that people don’t know is how much their decisions are costing them. Hmm. How do you know that if you don’t manufacture that data, it’s not like it’s sitting in their system today that says, oh, I, I could have made this decision and it would’ve saved me $5 or it would’ve saved me a hundred dollars. They don’t know because the systems that, that they have were never built with that in mind. So right. That’s part of the manufacturing that we have to do. So I think that’s, that’s the challenge. It’s the old older systems out there not built for this. And then that’s where, you know, you gotta manufacture some data and that’s, that’s the magic. I think.

Greg White (00:32:19):

So Greg white, Shannon, you’re very polite. I’ll say it it’s the E R P systems, right? I mean the E R P systems were built when we didn’t even have the expectation of the robust data that we have today and systems like yours and others in supply chain, as supply chain is moved from what you describe as kind of a brute force industry to a much, much more intellectual and scientific industry. You, you all, and other technologies have captured that data, recognizing the robustness and the value in that data. And then you have to impart that knowledge back to a system that has no place to hold it and really can’t do much with it. Hmm. So I think the key there, Scott is the discussion around the manufacturing, the generation of data, because there is such a dearth of, of data, a data dearth, if you will, out there, uh, not because these, the solutions and you know, how, what a big fan of E R P I am, right.

Greg White (00:33:17):

Not because those so are inept, but because they were built so long ago, there wasn’t even the expectation that there could be robust data to help us make these decisions. And that’s, what’s opened the door for all of these new, relatively new technologies, particularly in supply chain. And now, again, to go back to Greg’s point around, around COVID, now that people recognize supply chain, as, as important as sales, they’re starting to use very similar. And in some cases the same data that they use for sales and marketing input to inform supply chain decisions. So that’s super powerful, Nate, I know you’re dying to jump in here either that, or you are really intently the building a, a proposal for a client. <affirmative>

Greg White (00:34:04):

Give us your, give us your,

Greg White (00:34:08):

Your, uh, your thoughts around that.

Nate Endicott (00:34:10):

I mean, E R PS. Yeah. I think that’s the struggle systems and the challenge that we run into and having discussions that we could have a lot of shippers, many, you know, as manufacturers, global distributors, a lot of those guys are coming, you know, to companies like rate links. And finally, I think realizing that one they’re not built for this, uh, you know, but two, the, that there are the ERPs out there, or the guys that are in, you know, massive M and a right now. And the part is, you know, it’s great that they all from a marketing standpoint can say they have this integrated solution, but none of that stuff’s integrated. And how long is it gonna take for some of these big, you know, global ERPs that are buying all these things to try to have an end to end, um, procure, to pay solution from execution and procurement all the way to payment.

Nate Endicott (00:35:04):

It’s an ever daunting task and it’ll probably never happen. So I think how do you become data driven most of the time, the systems that you have in place from an execution side? I mean, are they broke? I don’t know. Maybe you can augment them, but what we realize is that you don’t have to blow something up. If you take a data driven approach and you very quickly can, you know, again, know what you don’t know and realize that there’s some opportunities that you can very quickly go focus on that are gonna pay for themselves. And more, you know, as one guy in the industry says, Hey, everything that he does has to pay rent mm-hmm <affirmative>. So how do you, every opportunity if you had, you know, a KPI that’s saying, this is what you’re losing, this is your opportunity now you and your team can go see, Hey, what’s what should we go focus on the next three months?

Nate Endicott (00:35:51):

Cuz we know there’s only three to five probably that you can do in a year. So I don’t systems lack of integration in systems. People think in TMS is a, a visibility tool where it’s like, it’s really not, it might not even be your problem, but I think leaders are finally with the light being shown on supply chain. I think they’re finally waking up to the fact that, uh, oh, I’m now held accountable. So I better have, you know, good clean data. That’s not just telling me where my opportunities are, but something that I can hang my hat on. Uh, you know, so I know I’m gonna get a win.

Scott Luton (00:36:27):

Yep. Hey really quick, Greg, if I can interject for a second. Yeah. And before we start talking barriers that might prevent, uh, progress we made and maybe we start with Greg Cornett there with barriers. But before we do that, we should say hello to one of our favorites around here, Sylvia, Judy tuned in from Charleston. Of course she’s a VI, she’s a member and a leader in that vibrant supply chain community they’ve got across Charleston, uh, looks like she’s running between meetings and, and, uh, is also issuing a welcome to, uh, C B uh, C B P port director, clay to new leadership there. It looks like in Charleston. And one of the thing I’d add, uh, again, before start talking barriers is going back to what Shannon said about manufacturing, the data. It, it reminds me on about y’all back in the eighties, it was either Prego or Ragu. The pasta sauce had a commercial that said it’s in there, right? It’s in there, but Shannon’s point, you don’t have all you need. And if you’re not using the right technology, you can’t even create all that. You need to realize just how much you’re missing the boat. So a kid to the eighties, that’s what came to my mind. But Greg

Greg White (00:37:30):

That’s okay, let’s go all the way back to you. Can’t bleed a stone. I mean, you can’t get data out of a system that, you know, as Shannon has said, wasn’t built to, to maintain or produce or, or process it. So, uh, you know, what Nate was describing is this sort of new age process, maybe in the last 10 years to Shannon’s point late, we are late kind of late comers as supply chain, but it’s been happening for decades in, in other industries where people will, instead of ripping out the old E R P, which is kind of the core data for a bunch of portions of the system, right? They’re layering data layers on top of it to integrate with solutions like rate links and others so that they can go really, really deep in terms of functionality and capability for things like TMS and, and other capabilities. And with, without having to rip out the core accounting or finance system. Mm-hmm <affirmative> so, but let, so let’s, let’s do Greg let’s surprise you Mr. Cornett with a question. I mean, I mean, you have experienced this most recently and you spoke to it in your comment before, what are some of the barriers this has to be fresh, fresh in your mind that you’ve faced in trying to get integrated data, clean data, timely data. Can you share a little bit of it cuz you have this recent experience.

Greg Cornette (00:38:49):

I have this recent experience all the time. So <laugh> so, so first it’s, it’s the systemic issue. So we we’ve talked about, you know, the ERPs aren’t built for this, um, that’s one part. Um, but then you start getting into the other very real parts, which are the cultural parts and the process parts. And so I, I think that the fork in the road, which, which we haven’t gotten to yet with rate links, but we will is, um, do you take the TMS and do you try to bend it around your existing processes or are you gonna adjust your processes to fit within what the TMS can do to maximize its capabilities? And I think that’s the fork in the road that everyone faces. Um, as we start talking about data integration and it’s the choice with, organization’s gonna have to make, are you gonna maximize the technology or are you just going to take the technology and bend it into your existing processes? And it neither may work, but, but the yield could be different depending on what decision you make.

Greg White (00:39:50):

That’s an incredible insight because a lot of companies take whichever was, I can’t remember if it was the former or the lot of, lot of companies take technology and bend it to their will bend it to their current processes. And all they do is really, really bad processes that much faster mm-hmm <affirmative> right. And, and to your point, Greg, the yield, I, I have seen it in 1500 or so implementations of technology. I’ve seen it. It is dramatically better. If you use a sound technology that has a good process built into it and you bend your processes to that, and also the, the additional data and capabilities that are provided to you by these technologies. Now I’m not saying trust the technology. I never say to people, but they’re, you know, they’re usually to have a pro a technology be as effective as a rate links or you know, or other techs out there. They have to have a sound process and they have to have collected the appropriate data and automated it to the appropriate extent. And it is always in my experience better to, to bend to the will of the, of the new process. Let’s forget about the technology bend to the will of the new process rather than try to automate what you were doing before.

Scott Luton (00:41:08):

Mm well said, uh, and Greg Cornett appreciate you sharing some of those aspects of your journey every day as you, as you, uh, spike the football on, let’s get Shannon. Greg, let’s get Shannon maybe to weigh in on what he heard there from a barrier standpoint, and then we’ll get, Nate’s take, and then we’re, we’re gonna be coming around the, the home stretch, a few of the items, but Shannon, what’d you hear there from a barrier standpoint? What are you seeing?

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:41:30):

I don’t know. The, the, you’re probably talking the wrong person about a barrier. I don’t really see. I don’t have any real, I don’t know, to me, it’s, it’s probably based on the experience. It’s not, there’s no real barriers to getting this. Now. The things have changed so much in the last five years. Um, you know, the, the biggest barriers used to have would be around where are you gonna store all this stuff? How are you gonna access it all? And how is it ever gonna get worked on fast enough? So that way it’s, it’s actually relevant. And you know, now with cloud and things like that, all those barriers have been. Uh, so really now I think it’s just a matter of, of companies putting together a plan and actually executing on it. You know, uh, you know, if you’re gonna be data driven, you gotta do three things. Uh, you gotta collect data, you gotta collect the right data and then you actually have to use it to make decisions. Hmm. So, you know, are you actually, you know, letting the data help you make decisions or not, you know, it’s all out there. Um, so, so I think that’s, I think the barriers, technical barriers that used to be around just don’t exist anymore and

Greg White (00:42:51):


Shannon Vaillancourt (00:42:52):

Yeah. You can

Greg White (00:42:52):

Take, I think it’s more cultural Shannon. I mean,

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:42:56):

Part of it, you know, I mean, yes, you run into it from time to time where there’s, there’s some cultural issues, but I, I really believe that those are going away. I don’t run into them as much as we used to, you know, 10 years ago. Sure, absolutely. Yeah, yeah. Everybody would, you know, they always like, eh, you know, the data’s just wrong, it’s just wrong. And it’s like, well, why is it wrong? And they’re like, well, this one time <laugh>, you know, and it’s like, they all have that, that

Greg White (00:43:25):

Outlier the, the exception. Yes. Right. And that’s one exception.

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:43:30):

And that’s the problem with, with humans, uh, is we, we have a lot of bias when it comes to data and information. Yeah. We remember things that didn’t really exist. We’re not really

Greg White (00:43:45):

As the over indexed.

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:43:46):

Yeah. Well, we’re not as good as we think and dog on it, we just get hungry some days, you know, and that really wrecks the decision making process.

Greg White (00:43:56):

Yes, it does.

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:43:57):

And I think that’s why now the barriers of, you know, well, this person knew it, all those, those barriers are gone. Companies realize they have to move faster. They have to be more accurate. And that’s where I think it’s now supply. Chain’s time to finally get the resources that they’ve been looking for.

Scott Luton (00:44:17):

Agreed. It’s like to one of your points, it’s like shopping when you’re hungry, you can’t do that. Cause it, it changes all your decision making. Yeah. All right. All right. For the second

Greg White (00:44:25):

Time yourself, when you’re hungry, <laugh> that’s right. Your favorite Snickers commercials.

Scott Luton (00:44:29):

Yes. I love those stickers commercials. Okay. They making me really hungry folks. I gotta stop. Let’s move ahead for the sake of time. Cause we gotta, uh, some resources we wanna share for folks really quick. Sylvia makes a great point here. All these amazing end-to-end E R P systems have never looked inside a customer’s DC or warehouse to adjust variances, dangerous disconnect, especially with the number one point at Shanghai still under lockdown. And the global supply chain is not recovering from the major disruptor called COVID 19 until 2024 at best is what Sylvia says. Lead, uh, poor quality data can lead to garbage in and garbage out that old adage that we all know is so true, which all brings us to connect, uh, connecting and integrating let’s about how long it takes that. And Shannon will get your take here and then we’ll get Nate’s take. But how long does it take to connect, integrate and give us that a, a realistic time to value?

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:45:21):

Well, I’d say to, to get the data connected, you’re looking at few weeks, 30 days, you can get it all in there and working and then to actually get value out of it. You’re probably looking at 90 days. Um, man, you know, a lot of the, well, again, everybody forgets that there’s nothing. There’s nothing that new. I mean, you know, like when you’re, when you’re on your streaming service and it’s recommending stuff to you, doesn’t take very long for it to realize what you’re, uh, favorites are. You know, just like one of my, one of my friends was talking to me about TikTok and he’s like, do you ever go on TikTok? And all that? He goes, I think it knows me better than I know myself. <laugh> and, and it’s these algorithms now that are out there. So now imagine with the supply chain day, I think of all this data coming in after 90 is it’s these tried and true algorithms. It, it has a pretty good picture as to what’s happening. It can pick out season, it can understand, uh, um, predictions better. Uh, so then 90 days you can get instant value out of it. Yeah. And then you think about six months, a year, two years, three years. It, it compounds. It’s very exponential

Scott Luton (00:46:39):

Moving mountain that point, Shannon move the mountains at that point. Absolutely. Nick, uh, I’m sorry, Nate, I wanna get you to weigh in on what you heard Shannon there. I mean, you’re on the front line and, and, and talking with a wide variety of business leaders, solving a bunch of issues and clearly solving them quick. Gosh, 90 days and less Nate, what’s your take there on that realistic timeline.

Nate Endicott (00:46:57):

Yeah. I mean, one, there’s never been something that we’ve gone and sold that wasn’t done that, um, unless someone’s in the way on the other side, but even then, you know, you run into, you know, Hey, it’s just not ready. It’s just not ready. They’re building a, it’s not ready. And how many times Shannon, have we been tasked from large retailers to large manufacturers to say, Hey, just light this thing up, baby. <laugh>

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:47:25):

With, no it please

Nate Endicott (00:47:27):

No with no it, and so we’ll go start. No it, and when they get around to it, if, and when then they can, but the business, the businesses can absolutely integrate their data and start getting value and have a quick time of value in a ROI within 90 days. And, uh, it, it can be done. It’s just, mm-hmm <affirmative> I was talking to a guy yesterday and, and he is like, man, even real estate is trying to leverage this data to try to figure out where do we go next and how, you know, from a routing standpoint and inventory and, you know, fulfillment and like, yeah, I mean, you connect the data and we find many internal organizations now are leveraging this data because supply chain, again, transportation data, supply it data where, I mean, all of it is in one place so that you can finally leverage it, um, you know, faster decisions. So yeah, I would echo what Shannon says and more

Scott Luton (00:48:22):

So. And Greg Cornett, I’m get you to weigh in here. And then, uh, Greg white, we get your final comment before we get into a resource. But Nate, we, we gotta breakout, uh, from the, um, the hall of fame of t-shirt isms, one of our, our favorite, uh, group, favorite of your comments, uh, last time you were period with us. Cause we’re, cause really at the end of the day, in many ways we’re talking about just taking action, right? We’re taking out all the head trash and all, we can’t do this, we can’t do that. We gotta have the will to, to take deliberate action. Right. And yes, it’s gonna be disruptive and, and it’s gonna be, it’s gonna be new. It’s gonna be changed. All those things that, that the humans in us don’t like, but we gotta take action. So Nate, last time you’re with us, you, you challenged our listeners to put down the donuts, get out the recliner and do something.

Scott Luton (00:49:08):

And I love that. Uh, so no, thank you so much and look great to have you back here and appreciate what you’re sharing Greg co uh, we’ve heard a lot here today and of course you’re, you’re, you’re in, in it doing it, making it happen. When we talk about, you know, that time to value, we talk about kind of the, the how soon can it be, you know, delivering real value to the organization or just the, any comments about the journey overall. What else would you add here? Uh, before we kind of come down to home stretch,

Greg Cornette (00:49:36):

You know, Nate’s point I, the, the hold ups are gonna be internal within your organization. We’re still at the very much at the start with rate links. I’m seeing it already that it’s gonna be our challenge to keep pace with rate links and, and I’m very excited, uh, to get the 90 days and beyond. Um, I’m very happy with the progress. There’s an established process. Uh, that’s flowing very well and I, and I think we’re making good progress. So it’s, it’s followed the lead and it’s keep up. And that’s, that’s the two biggest things that I would give

Scott Luton (00:50:09):

Love that. Okay, Greg white, and I’m coming to you, but before I do, Hey, Craig, Lexton tuned in from Brisbane BA great to have you here today via LinkedIn. And this is Colleen. I really appreciate the feedback here, Colleen. I agree with you, uh, Colleen Bens off. Thanks so much for that feedback. Great to have you here today. There’s a, it’s a fascinating panel. Uh, Greg white. Yeah. I love the, yeah, there, there’s a no nonsense element at play here with this, these three, three folks here. And I love it. It’s it’s frankness, it’s authentic. It’s like, matter of fact, why are we not doing this right, Greg?

Greg White (00:50:41):

Uh, it’s exactly that. Why are we not doing this? I mean, this is where Shannon and I connect on so many levels because from a supply chain technologist myself, right. I was always, and he and I started our companies roughly the same time. And you know, I’ve often talked to you Shannon, about how far ahead of the market I’ve always felt you were. I think at least from an awareness standpoint, Greg, you can confirm this. Probably the market is starting to catch up. They get it. Now they understand that this isn’t as hard as it has been made out to be it isn’t an E R P implementation, right? Even if you only have half the data, when you’ve got a technology that can fill in the gaps, you can at least get started, do something right to Nate’s point

Scott Luton (00:51:26):

That’s right. Do something, put down a crispy CRE get out and do something. Greg was

Greg White (00:51:31):

I’m curious, Greg, was there a point where I know, I know your process of making a decision on this was probably, uh, fairly length lengthy, but was there a point where you, you just finally said, we just need to do this, right. We’ve been thinking about it. We’ve been talking about it. We had have reservations about making change, right? It’s not about who your business partner, but it’s usually about your own organization. What was kind of the trigger point where you said, okay, it’s time.

Greg Cornette (00:51:59):

You know, I would, I would, we had a very thorough vetting process for multiple reasons. And I would say probably the second time that we went through the demo, we, uh, with rate lengths that it, it, the light went on and you know, it it’s an exceptional demo and it really speaks to what the value you’re going to get by making this commitment. And I feel like through the entire process that our, our, our questions were answered completely and clearly, and, and in a way that anyone in the organization can understand them too, doesn’t have to be a supply chain expert, um, can be anyone within the organization. So really the demos help. And I, and I think that’s a very valid reason for rate lengths,

Scott Luton (00:52:41):


Greg Cornette (00:52:41):

That. Was

Greg White (00:52:41):

There a particular pain in your organization that was just driving you to do something? I mean, was it one thing or was it a multitude of things? I’m always curious

Greg Cornette (00:52:51):

About that. Um, it’s a lot of things, but I, I would say the, the number one that we’re all struggling with right now is visibility. Uh, especially during the last three years that that’s been the straw that’s broken the camels back, but, um, the really important parts are the ones that we’re not even looking at pain points, because again, we Don know what they are yet. And, and those are really the, the earnings and the costs, um, because those are not visible and they’re way outta control right now.

Scott Luton (00:53:19):

Hmm. Not for long, right? Not for long Greg. That’s the good news. There’s lots of good news. I, I really appreciate how, how, how, frankly, how Frank y’all approached a conversation here today and painting the picture of the opportunity sitting there right up under our nose, uh, to our production team. Hey, we’re gonna wrap with all five of us, so we won’t be solutioning out, uh, Greg, Nate, and Shannon out before we wrap big, thanks. Uh, by the way, to our production team, Chantel, Amanda and Catherine for helping us do what we do. Okay. So Nate in the co what I love, uh, I love how easy rate links has made this, right. And especially how easy they’ve made it to, to kick the tires, check out a demo. I think we’ve got a link we can drop into comments, but what would you say to that?

Nate Endicott (00:53:58):

Yeah. I mean, there’s many ways that people can, you know, connect with us, LinkedIn sales at rate links dot, uh, click the link below to book a demo, but you know, our third say rate links, not don’t rush me UN paid by the hour. So you move quick. It doesn’t take nine months, six months. It does not take that long. And you can absolutely add value very short time, um, and even hit your bonus in 2022 and 2023

Scott Luton (00:54:29):

Sounds. Hey, that sounds music to my ear is Greg white.

Greg White (00:54:32):

Yeah, I, I, you know, I think that’s, that’s another, you know, that’s another facet of these new age technologies is that they are not slaves to the big four, right? Where they, they need the big four cells on behalf of these big ERPs. So for the ERPs to sell, they have to have a technology that produces a Teon of services revenue, and, and that’s not necessary. And especially today, it’s not desired, right. You can do with virtual switches and dials what it used to take lines of code and weeks of analysis do, because there are so many use cases that have already been defined that you can build right into the technology. And that’s the beauty of, of solutions like rate links and others is, it is very rapid to deploy because they have made it switch driven. I mean, that’s grossly understating it, but you know, it’s, it’s every bit is configurable as an E R P, but it’s not necessary to be customized. So it doesn’t take all the time to do the same work. And that, I mean that personally, again, this is another thing where Shannon and I, you know, our minds meet is I believe that that is the way technology should be done. And I believe that’s the way the incoming generations, which we’ve been talking about to that’s the way they expect it to be done, plug it in and watch it run,

Scott Luton (00:55:52):

Love it. No hammers required to beat that technology into <laugh> the hole that’s needed. Right. Okay.

Greg White (00:55:59):

Right. You don’t need a army of 400 consultants. Right. Right.

Scott Luton (00:56:03):

All right. I love that. Uh, and, and, you know, now never does these conversations. Just, I wanna go around the horn before wrap and make sure folks know how to connect with this, uh, incredible panel here, folks. Uh, again, to echo what Nate said earlier, there’s a link to check out a demo. Uh, it’s conveniently conveniently there in the comments. One click away. Y’all, y’all check that out. Greg Cornett. I really appreciate as busy as you are. Appreciate your time here today. It’s great to meet you. We really enjoyed our pre show conversation. Completely agree with your super superhero recommendation. Uh, I had forgotten about that series. So how can folks connect with you and, uh, flare flexible packaging corporation?

Greg Cornette (00:56:42):

So our company website is flare, uh, where packaging provider without, uh, throughout north America and south America would be interested to contact connect with you.

Scott Luton (00:56:54):

Outstanding, doing a lot of good, uh, innovative customization, uh, packaging that tell you it’s the name of the game these days. It’s never been sexier perhaps, but Greg, I pretty your comments here today, and you’ll have to check out, uh, flare flexible packaging. Uh, how about, uh, let’s go to the rate links team. Shannon Valen Corp will start with you. How can folks connect with you and rate links,

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:57:14):

Uh, you know, rate and like Nate said,, uh, hit us up on LinkedIn and you know, definitely hit them link book, a demo.

Scott Luton (00:57:24):

Wonderful. And, uh, speaking of links, Hey, um, I bet you welcome, uh, comparing notes on the golf course with, with any business leaders. Huh?

Nate Endicott (00:57:32):

<laugh> let’s go. Let’s talk. <laugh>

Shannon Vaillancourt (00:57:34):

Hey, what my, yeah, my son is graduating in a couple weeks and he’s gonna be a, you know, in M so I have a, Oh, wow. Live in coach for the rest of my life,

Scott Luton (00:57:47):

Man. There you go. I am jealous. We all need a good golf coach. Yeah, Nate, Indico, let’s go. He says, and Nate love what you’re bringing to the table. A lot of folks may not know that Nate’s a former professional athlete. Uh, we’ll have to save that for our supply chain nerd talk sports segment, but how can folks connect with you? Nate

Nate Endicott (00:58:03):

Sales, Ray links com LinkedIn message me. I think my phone number’s even on LinkedIn <laugh> that’s

Greg White (00:58:12):

Old son,

Nate Endicott (00:58:13):

But I know welcome conversations. We love helping people solve, uh, complex problems in a very quick time. So appreciate you. Awesome.

Scott Luton (00:58:23):

Awesome. I appreciate that Nate, in the, and Shannon ballon Corp, both with rate links, of course, Craig Greg Cornett flair, flexible packaging corporation. Thanks for your time as well. All right, Greg white, you get the final word here from this esteem panel, passionate about driving change in supply chain, your final thought.

Greg White (00:58:40):

Yeah. I mean, rate links is a hot mover. And as I’ve told many people many times on many of the shows, it only takes about 10 years to become an overnight success. So, I mean, it really does take a lot of expertise and knowledge in the industry. It takes a lot of drive in, in terms of having strong values and principles around delivering solutions, delivering them rapidly, delivering value. I, I know Shane Shannon does not have any trouble sleeping at night cause, uh, you know, I mean, seriously, he’s built this technology and I, you know, we’ve had conversations, multiple conversations, if you wanna listen, we have a bazillion episodes with Shannon and Nate on him. So, so there’s a lot that you can learn there. And, and they do have the, in my opinion, and I think many people’s opinions in the incoming generations of leadership, they have the right attitude about technology. It is virtually APPI enterprise class technology. So APPI, it makes it so much easier, so much quicker, so much quick value to the point that they they’ve all made here. Uh, it is the, you know, it’s the new way to do technology and he’s been doing it for more than the decades. So awesome.

Scott Luton (00:59:51):

I love that. Appify learn new new vocabulary every day. Um, okay. Yeah. Don’t,

Greg White (00:59:58):

Don’t check the dictionary for that,

Scott Luton (01:00:01):

Right folks. Hey, hopefully y’all enjoyed this conversation as much as I have. Thanks for all the feedback we’ve gotten into comments. Thanks for all the great, uh, perspectives shared big, thanks again to Shannon, Nate and Greg. And of course, Greg white love have these conversations with you. Hey, whatever you do listen to Nate, right? Take action. Whatever you do, whether it’s related to this or something else, right? The pains aren’t going away. It takes real action leadership. And along those lines on behalf of Greg white and our entire supply chain, now team Scott and signing off for now challenging you to do good to give forward and to be the change with that said, we’ll see next time. Right back here on supply chain. Now. Thanks for buddy.

Intro/Outro (01:00:37):

Thanks for being a part of our supply chain. Now community check out all, all of our and make sure you subscribe to supply chain. Now anywhere you listen to podcasts and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on supply chain. Now.

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Featured Guests

Greg Cornette is a supply chain professional with proven success in multiple functional areas across the enterprise. He is a strategic manager with exceptional project management skills and is consistently recognized for achieving results and the ability to adapt to multiple functions. Greg joined Flair Flexible Packaging Corporation in 2017 as the Director of Corporate Logistics. With 20+ years in the supply chain and logistics industry, he is skilled in managing multifaceted and complex supply chains. Prior to Flair Flexible Packaging Corporation, Greg held various roles at Schneider, Axletech International, and Schwabe North America. He has a BBA in International Business and French from St. Norbert College and an MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. Connect with Greg on LinkedIn.

Shannon Vaillancourt is the President and Founder of RateLinx. He started the company in 2002 with the idea that there was a better way to give companies complete visibility to their supply chain. Since then, RateLinx has become a leading supply chain software and data services company that gives retailers, manufacturers, and distributors the ability to ship, track, and pay for their freight. Before founding RateLinx, Shannon held several leadership and technical roles in software engineering, solutions, and services. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. Connect with Shannon on LinkedIn.

Nate Endicott With a passion to help companies harness the opportunity of big data to substantially improve their supply chain and logistics visibility and performance, Nate Endicott joined RateLinx in 2014 as Senior Vice President, Global Sales and Alliances. Endicott is an expert at accurately diagnosing underlying problems and recommending custom RateLinx software and data service solutions. Endicott’s keen understanding of the RateLinx proprietary predictive modeling engine allows him to help businesses of all sizes to optimize their freight operations.  Connect with Nate on LinkedIn.


Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

Greg White

Principal & Host

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.

He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.

A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www., which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more.  In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys.  She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.

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Vicki White


Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.

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Katherine Hintz

Creative Director, Producer, Host

Katherine Hintz, MBA is a marketing professional who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.

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Kim Reuter

Host, The Freight Insider

From humble beginnings working the import docks, representing Fortune 500 giants, Ford, Michelin Tire, and Black & Decker; to Amazon technology patent holder and Nordstrom Change Leader, Kimberly Reuter has designed, implemented, and optimized best-in-class, highly scalable global logistics and retail operations all over the world. Kimberly’s ability to set strategic vision supported by bomb-proof processes, built on decades of hands-on experience, has elevated her to legendary status. Sought after by her peers and executives for her intellectual capital and keen insights, Kimberly is a thought leader in the retail logistics industry.

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Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

Sofia Rivas Herrera is a Mexican Industrial Engineer from Tecnologico de Monterrey class 2019. Upon graduation, she earned a scholarship to study MIT’s Graduate Certificate in Logistics and Supply Chain Management and graduated as one of the Top 3 performers of her class in 2020. She also has a multicultural background due to her international academic experiences at Singapore Management University and Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. Sofia self-identifies as a Supply Chain enthusiast & ambassador sharing her passion for the field in her daily life.

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

Demo Perez started his career in 1997 in the industry by chance when a relative asked him for help for two just weeks putting together an operation for FedEx Express at the Colon Free Zone, an area where he was never been but accepted the challenge. Worked in all roles possible from a truck driver to currier to a sales representative, helped the brand introduction, market share growth and recognition in the Colon Free Zone, at the end of 1999 had the chance to meet and have a chat with Fred Smith ( FedEx CEO), joined another company in 2018 who took over the FedEx operations as Operations and sales manager, in 2004 accepted the challenge from his company to leave the FedEx operations and business to take over the operation and business of DHL Express, his major competitor and rival so couldn’t say no, by changing completely its operation model in the Free Zone. In 2005 started his first entrepreneurial journey by quitting his job and joining two friends to start a Freight Forwarding company. After 8 months was recruited back by his company LSP with the General Manager role with the challenge of growing the company and make it fully capable warehousing 3PL. By 2009 joined CSCMP and WERC and started his journey of learning and growing his international network and high-level learning. In 2012 for the first time joined a local association ( the Panama Maritime Chamber) and worked in the country’s first Logistics Strategy plan, joined and lead other associations ending as president of the Panama Logistics Council in 2017. By finishing his professional mission at LSP with a company that was 8 times the size it was when accepted the role as GM with so many jobs generated and several young professionals coached, having great financial results, took the decision to move forward and start his own business from scratch by the end of 2019. with a friend and colleague co-founded IPL Group a company that started as a boutique 3PL and now is gearing up for the post-Covid era by moving to the big leagues.

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Mary Kate Love

VP, Marketing

Mary Kate Love is currently the VP of marketing at Supply Chain Now focused on brand strategy and audience + revenue growth. Mary Kate’s career is a testament to her versatility and innovative spirit: she has experience in start-ups, venture capital, and building innovation initiatives from the ground up: she previously helped lead the build-out of the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific and before that, MxD (Manufacturing times Digital): the Department of Defense’s digital manufacturing innovation center. Mary Kate has a passion for taking complicated ideas and turning them into reality: she was one of the first team members at MxD and the first team member at the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific.

Mary Kate dedicates her extra time to education and mentorship: she was one of the founding Board Members for Women Influence Chicago and led an initiative for a city-wide job shadow day for young women across Chicago tech companies and was previously on the Board of Directors at St. Laurence High School in Chicago, Young Irish Fellowship Board and the UN Committee for Women. Mary Kate is the founder of National Supply Chain Day and enjoys co-hosting podcasts at Supply Chain Now. Mary Kate is from the south side of Chicago, a mom of two baby boys, and an avid 16-inch softball player. She holds a BS in Political Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Adrian Purtill serves as Business Development Manager at Vector Global Logistics, where he consults with importers and exporters in various industries to match their specific shipping requirements with the most effective supply chain solutions. Vector Global Logistics is an asset-free, multi-modal logistics company that provides exceptional sea freight, air freight, truck, rail, general logistic services and consulting for our clients. Our highly trained and professional team is committed to providing creative and effective solutions, always exceeding our customer’s expectations and fostering long-term relationships. With more than 20+ years of experience in both strategy consulting and logistics, Vector Global Logistics is your best choice to proactively minimize costs while having an exceptional service level.

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics.  He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Nick Roemer has had a very diverse and extensive career within design and sales over the last 15 years stretching from China, Dubai, Germany, Holland, UK, and the USA. In the last 5 years, Nick has developed a hawk's eye for sustainable tech and the human-centric marketing and sales procedures that come with it. With his far-reaching and strong network within the logistics industry, Nick has been able to open new avenues and routes to market within major industries in the USA and the UAE. Nick lives by the ethos, “Give more than you take." His professional mission is to make the logistics industry leaner, cleaner and greener.

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Allison Giddens

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Allison Krache Giddens has been with Win-Tech, a veteran-owned small business and aerospace precision machine shop, for 15 years, recently buying the company from her mentor and Win-Tech’s Founder, Dennis Winslow. She and her business partner, John Hudson now serve as Co-Presidents, leading the 33-year old company through the pandemic.

She holds undergraduate degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Georgia, a Masters in Conflict Management from Kennesaw State University, a Masters in Manufacturing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Certificate of Finance from the University of Georgia. She also holds certificates in Google Analytics, event planning, and Cybersecurity Risk Management from Harvard online. Allison founded the Georgia Chapter of Women in Manufacturing and currently serves as Treasurer. She serves on the Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board as its Secretary, the liveSAFE Resources Board of Directors as Resource Development Co-Chair, and on the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association Board as Membership Chair and is also a member of Cobb Executive Women. She is on the Board for the Cobb Chamber of Commerce’s Northwest Area Councils. Allison runs The Dave Krache Foundation, a non-profit that helps pay sports fees for local kids in need.

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Billy Taylor

Host of Dial P for Procurement

Billy Taylor is a Proven Business Excellence Practitioner and Leadership Guru with over 25 years leading operations for a Fortune 500 company, Goodyear. He is also the CEO of LinkedXL (Excellence), a Business Operating Systems Architecting Firm dedicated to implementing sustainable operating systems that drive sustainable results. Taylor’s achievements in the industry have made him a Next Generational Lean pacesetter with significant contributions.

An American business executive, Taylor has made a name for himself as an innovative and energetic industry professional with an indispensable passion for his craft of operational excellence. His journey started many years ago and has worked with renowned corporations such as The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT) leading multi-site operations. With over 3 decades of service leading North America operations, he is experienced in a deeply rooted process driven approach in customer service, process integrity for sustainability.

A disciple of continuous improvement, Taylor’s love for people inspires commitment to helping others achieve their full potential. He is a dynamic speaker and hosts "The Winning Link," a popular podcast centered on business and leadership excellence with the #1 rated Supply Chain Now Network. As a leadership guru, Taylor has earned several invitations to universities, international conferences, global publications, and the U.S. Army to demonstrate how to achieve and sustain effective results through cultural acceptance and employee ownership. Leveraging the wisdom of his business acumen, strong influence as a speaker and podcaster Taylor is set to release "The Winning Link" book under McGraw Hill publishing in 2022. The book is a how-to manual to help readers understand the management of business interactions while teaching them how to Deine, Align, and Execute Winning in Business.

A servant leader, Taylor, was named by The National Diversity Council as one of the Top 100 Diversity Officers in the country in 2021. He features among Oklahoma's Most Admired CEOs and maintains key leadership roles with the Executive Advisory Board for The Shingo Institute "The Nobel Prize of Operations" and The Association of Manufacturing Excellence (AME); two world-leading organizations for operational excellence, business development, and cultural learning.  He is also an Independent Director for the M-D Building Products Board, a proud American manufacturer of quality products since 1920.

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Tandreia Bellamy

Host, Supply Chain Now

Tandreia Bellamy retired as the Vice President of Industrial Engineering for UPS Supply Chain Solutions which included the Global Logistics, Global Freight Forwarding and UPS Freight business units. She was responsible for operations strategy and planning, asset management, forecasting, and technology tool development to optimize sustainable efficiency while driving world class service.

Tandreia held similar positions at the business unit level for Global Logistics and Global Freight forwarding. As the leader of the Global Logistics engineering function, she directed all industrial engineering activies related to distribution, service parts logistics (post-sales support), and mail innovations (low cost, light weight shipping partnership with the USPS). Between these roles Tandreia helped to establish the Advanced Technology Group which was formed to research and develop cutting edge solutions focused on reducing reliance on manual labor.

Tandreia began her career in 1986 as a part-time hourly manual package handling employee. She spent the great majority of her career in the small package business unit which is responsible for the pick-up, sort, transport and delivery of packages domestically. She held various positions in Industrial Engineering, Marketing, Inside and On-road operations in Central Florida before transferring to Atlanta for a position in Corporate Product Development and Corporate Industrial Engineering. Tandreia later held IE leadership roles in Nebraska, Minnesota and Chicago. In her final role in small package she was an IE VP responsible for all aspects of IE, technology support and quality for the 25 states on the western half of the country.
Tandreia is currently a Director for the University of Central Florida (UCF) Foundation Board and also serves on their Dean’s Advisory Board for the College of Engineering and Computer Science. Previously Tandreia served on the Executive Advisory Board for Virginia Tech’s IE Department and the Association for Supply Chain Management. She served on the Board of Trustees for ChildServ (a Chicago child and family services non-profit) and also served on the Texas A&M and Tuskegee Engineering Advisory Boards. In 2006 she was named Business Advisor of the Year by INROADS, in 2009 she was recognized as a Technology All-Star at the Women of Color in STEM conference and in 2019 she honored as a UCF Distinguished Aluma by the Department of Industrial Engineering and Management Systems.

Tandreia holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University and a master’s degree in Industrial Engineering and Management Systems from UCF. Her greatest accomplishment, however, is being the proud mother of two college students, Ruby (24) and Anthony (22).

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

Mary Kate Soliva is a veteran of the US Army and cofounder of the Guam Human Rights Initiative. She is currently in the Doctor of Criminal Justice program at Saint Leo University. She is passionate about combating human trafficking and has spent the last decade conducting training for military personnel and the local community.

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

As the founder and CEO of Supply Chain Now, you might say Scott is the voice of supply chain – but he’s too much of a team player to ever claim such a title. One thing’s for sure: he’s a tried and true supply chain expert. With over 15 years of experience in the end-to-end supply chain, Scott’s insights have appeared in major publications including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He has also been named a top industry influencer by Thinkers360, ISCEA and more.

From 2009-2011, Scott was president of APICS Atlanta, and he continues to lead initiatives that support both the local business community and global industry. A United States Air Force Veteran, Scott has also regularly led efforts to give back to his fellow veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.

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Greg White

Principal & CMO, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise

When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.

Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

Talk about world-class: Chris is one of the few professionals in the world to hold CPIM-F, CLTD-F and CSCP-F designations from ASCM/APICS. He’s also the APICS coach – and our resident Supply Chain Doctor. When he’s not hosting programs with Supply Chain Now, he’s sharing supply chain knowledge on the APICS Coach Youtube channel or serving as a professional education instructor for the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistic Institute’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) program and University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Center for Professional Education courses.

Chris earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University, an MBA with emphasis in Industrial Psychology from the University of West Florida, and is a Doctoral in Supply Chain Management candidate.

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Tyler Ward

Director of Sales

Tyler Ward serves as Supply Chain Now's Director of Sales. Born and raised in Mid-Atlantic, Tyler is a proud graduate of Shippensburg University where he earned his degree in Communications. After college, he made his way to the beautiful state of Oregon, where he now lives with his wife and daughter.

With over a decade of experience in sales, Tyler has a proven track record of exceeding targets and leading high-performing teams. He credits his success to his ability to communicate effectively with customers and team members alike, as well as his strategic thinking and problem-solving skills.

When he's not closing deals, you can find Tyler on the links or cheering on his favorite football and basketball teams. He also enjoys spending time with his family, playing pick-up basketball, and traveling back to Ocean City, Maryland, his favorite place!

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog.  He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community.  Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include CiscoMicrosoft, Citrix and IBM.  Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane UniversityO’Reilly MediaLinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight.  Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems EngineeringCarrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.

He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.

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Constantine Limberakis


Constantine Limberakis is a thought leader in the area of procurement and supply management. He has over 20 years of international experience, playing strategic roles in a wide spectrum of organizations related to analyst advisory, consulting, product marketing, product development, and market research.Throughout his career, he's been passionate about engaging global business leaders and the broader analyst and technology community with strategic content, speaking engagements, podcasts, research, webinars, and industry articles.Constantine holds a BA in History from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and an MBA in Finance & Marketing / Masters in Public & International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh.

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Amanda Luton

Vice President, Production

Amanda is a production and marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Amanda currently manages, produces, and develops modern digital content for Supply Chain Now and their clients. Amanda has previously served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah, and founded and managed her own successful digital marketing firm, Magnolia Marketing Group. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now production team, you can find Amanda in the kitchen, reading, listening to podcasts, or enjoying time with family.

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

Clay is passionate about two things: supply chain and the marketing that goes into it. Recently graduated with a degree in marketing at the University of Georgia, Clay got his start as a journalism major and inaugural member of the Owl’s football team at Kennesaw State University – but quickly saw tremendous opportunity in the Terry College of Business. He’s already putting his education to great use at Supply Chain Now, assisting with everything from sales and brand strategy to media production. Clay has contributed to initiatives such as our leap into video production, the guest blog series, and boosting social media presence, and after nearly two years in Supply Chain Now’s Marketing Department, Clay now heads up partnership and sales initiatives with the help of the rest of the Supply Chain Now sales team.

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

Trisha is new to the supply chain industry – but not to podcasting. She’s an experienced podcast manager and virtual assistant who also happens to have 20 years of experience as an elementary school teacher. It’s safe to say, she’s passionate about helping people, and she lives out that passion every day with the Supply Chain Now team, contributing to scheduling and podcast production.

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

My name is Chantel King and I am the Social Media Specialist at Supply Chain Now. My job is to make sure our audience is engaged and educated on the abundant amount of information the supply chain industry has to offer.

Social Media and Communications has been my niche ever since I graduated from college at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco. No, I am not a West Coast girl. I was born and raised in New Jersey, but my travel experience goes way beyond the garden state. My true passion is in creating editorial and graphic content that influences others to be great in whatever industry they are in. I’ve done this by working with lifestyle, financial, and editorial companies by providing resources to enhance their businesses.

Another passion of mine is trying new things. Whether it’s food, an activity, or a sport. I would like to say that I am an adventurous Taurus that never shies away from a new quest or challenge.

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

Lori is currently completing a degree in marketing with an emphasis in digital marketing at the University of Georgia. When she’s not supporting the marketing efforts at Supply Chain Now, you can find her at music festivals – or working toward her dream goal of a fashion career. Lori is involved in many extracurricular activities and appreciates all the learning experiences UGA has brought her.

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Katherine Hintz

Sales and Marketing Coordinator

Katherine is a marketing professional and MBA candidate who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.

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