Supply Chain Now
Episode 1299

When we're in an inflationary period, it's critical for companies to cut their costs and reduce their spend. And so you can't do that without spend visibility.

-Ashley Greuel

Episode Summary

Data visibility can reshape procurement and supply chain management.

In this episode, hosts Scott W. Luton and Allison Giddens are joined by Ashley Greuel and Jeff Gillmer from OMNIA Partners to explore the critical importance of spend visibility for business leaders navigating the complexities of 2024.

Tune in for practical insights on leveraging data integration and automation to minimize manual errors and maximize organizational impact. Learn about the strategic role of group purchasing organizations (GPOs) in complementing procurement efforts and uncovering cost-saving opportunities, especially for smaller businesses. With a blend of expert advice, future trends in AI and machine learning, and lighthearted banter, this episode provides actionable steps and encourages a community-driven approach to embracing technological advancements in the supply chain sector. This engaging conversation not only highlights current challenges but also offers a roadmap for aligning teams toward common goals and thriving amidst global uncertainties.

Episode Transcript

Narrator [00:00:04]:

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 opportunities. Stay tuned to hear from those making global business happen right here on Supply Chain Now.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:00:32]:

Hey, good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you may be. Scott Luton and Allison Giddens here with you on Supply Chain Now. Welcome, Allison. How you doing today?

 

Allison Giddens [00:00:40]:

I’m good. How are you?

 

Scott W. Luton [00:00:41]:

I’m doing wonderful. I am melting away here in metro Atlanta. It’s only 125 degrees.

 

Allison Giddens [00:00:46]:

That’s it.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:00:47]:

Goodness gracious. But you know what’s almost as hot as weather here in Atlanta?

 

Allison Giddens [00:00:52]:

Almost. Almost.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:00:54]:

This conversation we’re going to be having right here today, very timely conversation in spend visibility. Folks, there’s no shortages of timeless and new challenges in this current environment. We’re all working through today. We’re offering up three key ways organizations can more than tackle some of these big challenges and be more prepared to find success moving forward. We’re going to be welcoming, Allison, a couple of business leaders from your ally in the purchasing process to help us all find a better, more profitable, scalable way. Now, Allison, as a business and manufacturing leader yourself and a fellow Atlanta Braves fan, one of our guests will enjoy that. Hey, I bet this show really resonates with you, right? Should be a great show.

 

Allison Giddens [00:01:39]:

Yeah. I’m taking notes. I’ve got a little mini wipe off board on my desk where I take a lot. Helps me not go through so many post it notes, to be honest. I’m ready to go. Let’s do this.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:01:48]:

Very, very sustainable. Got your own whiteboard ready to go. All right. If you enjoy today’s show, be sure to share it with a friend or your network. They’ll be glad you did. Okay, Allison, let’s get to work. Welcoming in our two featured guests here today, starting with Ashley Greuel, vice president, operations support and analytics at OMNIA Partners, and Jeff Gillmer, senior vice president, private sector at OMNIA Partners. Hey.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:02:15]:

Hey, Ashley. How you doing?

 

Ashley Greuel [00:02:17]:

I’m doing well. Scott, how are you?

 

Scott W. Luton [00:02:19]:

Wonderful to see you. And Jeff, welcome, welcome. How you doing?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:02:22]:

Hey, Scott, how are you? Great to see you.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:02:24]:

Wonderful. Now, the Landon Braves bar was directed at our friend Jeff Gillmer. But hey, he’s got the trash talk reward right now. He’s a Phillies and an Eagles fan, and he’s got a leg up, certainly in the sports competition between Philadelphia and Atlanta. Alison, am I right?

 

Allison Giddens [00:02:42]:

We’re just salty because we’re jealous.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:02:45]:

Very salty.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:02:47]:

All right, we got a lot to get into here today. Jeff and Ashley and Allison, we want to start with this. Well, a little fun warm up question here. I want to get pick y’all’s brain around travel. We’re breaking records here in the States with this travel season coming up here that’s already kicked off. And did you know it is the late Anthony Bourdain’s birthday here today. Yes. The famed chef and world traveler that we lost way too soon.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:03:12]:

Now, he once said, quote, travel changes you. As you move through this life, in this world, you. You change things slightly. You leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life and travel leave marks on you. End quote. I love that. All right, so with that in mind, Ashley, I’m gonna start with you.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:03:29]:

With global travel adventures in mind. What’s one trip that you and your family have made that had a big impact on your journey?

 

Ashley Greuel [00:03:37]:

Well, I’ve been very fortunate to travel quite a bit in my time, and I think the. The one that has impacted me the most was to South Africa, getting to see, not just, you know, taking us safari, seeing the animals that we really traveled across the country and got to see and experience a lot. So it was wonderful.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:03:56]:

Wow. A gorgeous part of the world, gorgeous people, delicious food, wonderful customs. We went there last year as well, and I can’t wait to get back. All right, so, Jeff, that’s gonna be tough to top, but what’s a recent trip, or you name it, a trip that’s made a big impact on your journey. Yeah.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:04:16]:

So we took a trip up to a private island up off of British Columbia, up in Vancouver. Off of Vancouver, north of Vancouver. And to be in a remote setting like that where, you know, not many people were inhabited. The island, we were there truly with nature. I’ll never forget the landscape where you look at the trees along the ocean landscape, and there was little white spots on all the trees. It looked like Christmas lights, and they were bald eagles.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:04:44]:

Wow. Oh, my gosh.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:04:46]:

Hundreds and hundreds of bald eagles and bears coming down to. To the seascape, and it just. It reminds you of how beautiful this. This world is and all the unique spots that are out there. And we had never been to a place like that, as remote as that. And because there’s a flying, you know, plane to flee in and then flee out, but just incredible. And the beauty that’s out there in this world, and, you know, if you can get out there and see places like that, it’s just absolutely terrific. And never forget.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:05:19]:

Yeah.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:05:19]:

Well said, jeff. And I love your advice. Even better. Folks out there pause what you’re doing. Take your family out there to visit. Visit somewhere right around the corner or somewhere far like Ashley and Jeff are talking about. But travel will change you for sure. Allison, we have quite some world travelers here, here today.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:05:37]:

What’s your.

 

Allison Giddens [00:05:38]:

Well, I was going to reference a work trip, but now I feel pressured to not include a work trip. So I’m going to answer with, I went to Italy right after college, and it was almost a last minute thing. It was a planned thing with a roommate, but at the last minute, the roommate had to cancel. So I had to decide if I was going to go to Europe by myself or if I was going to cancel. And I decided to go by myself. And I remember my dad dropping me off at the airport, and I leaned in the car and I said, don’t tell mom, but Michelle’s not coming. And he said, I’m not stupid. I’m not telling your mother.

 

Allison Giddens [00:06:14]:

And so, yeah, I went for ten days, had a blast, and looking back on it, I think it was a really good way to kind of enter reality, that is.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:06:24]:

I love that. What a great, great story there, Allison. I’m sure it was a great trip, too. Um, all right, Allison, Ashley, and Jeff, I’d love to dive deeper into your travel experiences. Clearly, y’all value travel like many of our audience members do, but we got a lot to get into here today. So I want to start with this. Allison, Ashley, and Jeff, let’s kind of set the table a bit, offer our audience some valuable context. We can’t get enough context in this fast moving world we’re in.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:06:49]:

So, Ash, to start with you, many folks know we’ve really enjoyed our programming with OMNIA partners going back a few years. Y’all been on the move, but for a handful of folks that may be new, tell us briefly, if you would, about OMNIA partners and a little bit about your background.

 

Ashley Greuel [00:07:03]:

Sure. So OMNIA Partners is the largest group purchasing organization in the United States. We help companies of all sizes and in all industries cut costs and simplify their procurement. And we do this through leveraging their combined spend and purchasing power to reduce their pricing, get better terms and conditions with some of the top suppliers in the nation, and better price than they could get on their end. And I have been with omni partners for about four and a half years. After about twelve years in the procurement, consulting and gps space, I spent some time on the public sector side, supporting one of our largest members and working with cross functional teams within OMNIA partners to do that before coming into my current role, which is leading our member facing or our customer facing analytics teams love that.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:07:55]:

And someone told me once, Ashley and Jeff and Allison, for every one year you spend in procurement, it’s actually worth three years in human lives. Is that right, Ashley?

 

Ashley Greuel [00:08:04]:

It feels that way sometimes, for sure.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:08:07]:

Well, welcome and appreciate what you’ve done in your career. All right, so, Jeff, tell us about your background, if you would.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:08:14]:

Yeah, sure. So I worked, I’ve been dealing with supply chain and procurement leaders my entire career. In the nineties, I worked for a global air freighter logistics company, was the worldwide client executive for, at the time, General Electric and allied signals. So it was one of those things where something didn’t get to where it needed to be. You kind of heard about it from those two world class organizations. So I cut my teeth with them and then spent 22 great years at office Depot working with indirect procurement leaders in the businesses and services that a great company like office depot offers always been those two areas, supply chain and procurement. And it’s just, you know, kind of enjoy working with large, complex organizations and helping them to satisfy the needs that they have in their ever changing business. So it’s a great journey.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:09:09]:

Just love my career, no doubt, and help, help those organizations find a better way, which we’re going to be talking, touched on here today, Allison, between Ashley and Jeff, and then, of course, your background that we don’t talk enough about, all your years in manufacturing. I’d say we have quite an esteemed panel of practitioner experience here today, huh?

 

Allison Giddens [00:09:27]:

Oh, for sure. I like the wide array. And gosh, if you were doing, if you’re doing supply and logistics and sourcing and procurement in the nineties through now, you’ve seen everything. Of course, we say that, and then tomorrow something will happen that no one’s ever seen before.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:09:45]:

But knock it on wood. Knock it on wood. If you’ve done that, you deserve like a Time life series.

 

Allison Giddens [00:09:50]:

Right? No kidding.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:09:51]:

Right?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:09:51]:

No kidding.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:09:52]:

But hey, the good news is, kidding aside, you can learn and benefit from all the expertise here. Right. And that’s part of the big part of the value proposition. So more on that to come. Let’s talk about this. Jeff, I’ll stick with you for a second, because when it comes to the importance of spend visibility in 2024, what are some things that business leaders out there listening or viewing should know about?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:10:16]:

Yeah. So, I mean, look, I mean, you think about the business leaders and procurement in supply chain in general, it can be viewed as an administrative function more so than strategic. And I think that visibility, we at OMNIA think that visibility is actually the pivot between transforming from an administrative function to strategic. We know that the Fortune 1000 organizations are faced with really difficult challenges in their business. They have complex supply chains getting their arms around the spend, geographic dispersion, in many cases siloed departments. And if they can get their eyes on the visibility, they can really become or help a company realize their full market potential. The more they utilize the visibility, I’ll say that they do a little bit less of managing the complexity in the business and more focused towards the strategic component and contribution of the organization. So we think it’s huge.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:11:26]:

We think it’s here and now, easier said than done, but it’s how we’re thinking about it. And then the downstream costs associated. When you don’t have it, it’s hard to quantify all that goes into it with maverick spend and compliance related risks. Right. Without visibility, it kind of gets wide open season.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:11:51]:

That’s right. Jeff, just yesterday, Kevin L. Jackson, who, Alison, you know, the two of us were sitting down with a business leader up in the northern United States, and he was leading supply chain manufacturing for a company that has over 100 facilities around the world and over 90 distribution facilities. So kind of, to Jeff’s point, think of the complexity, right. And think of all the data. They could be tidal wave after tidal wave of data. But one of the initiatives they have been pushing through for years, kind of to your point, Jeff, is getting a hand around the data, right. Cleaning the data so that they can really focus in on the key priorities, because you can’t focus on everything.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:12:32]:

Right. And naturally, they are also using technology and other resources to do just that. And they’ve uncovered some tremendous opportunities. A lot of business leaders of those larger organizations are facing a lot of the same challenges that you are laying out there. Jeff Ashley, spend visibility here in 2024. What should more business leaders know?

 

Ashley Greuel [00:12:53]:

Well, I think we’re, as I think everybody knows, we’re in an inflationary period and everything is cyclical. So we’ve seen it before. But I think when we’re in one of those environments, it’s critical for companies to cut their costs and reduce their spend. And so you can’t do that without spend visibility. You can’t make data driven decisions. You can’t even know where to look to cut those costs without visibility into your spend. So it’s extremely critical right now.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:13:21]:

That’s right. And I’ll get you to comment here, Allison, but before I do, Ashley, excellent comments. You know, we had a former guest, Reg Holden, that was on a show with our friends at OMNIA partners a year or two ago, and he’s got this great quote and I had to go pull it up because I want to get it right. And he basically said, without spend visibility, it’s like trying to get somewhere without a roadmap. You’re just lost in the dark. And that resonates with so many folks. Right. So, Allison, weigh in.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:13:48]:

When Jeff and Ashley both were speaking to what business leaders got to know about spin visibility and where we are in 2024, your thoughts?

 

Allison Giddens [00:13:56]:

It’s, you don’t know what you don’t know. And I think that is a challenging thing for business leaders to, you know, we get caught up kind of in our day to day. Like, this is what I have to do. And once I get fixated on something, it’s like, well, this is, I just have to get across this hill and then things will be clearer. But unless you start doing things a little bit differently, like engaging people that have been there, done that, and they’ve got the network, it can be tempting to just kind of stick in that rut. So you don’t know what you don’t know. You have to.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:14:25]:

That’s right. Staying in the run of the business, doing the business instead of working on the business.

 

Allison Giddens [00:14:31]:

And that’s where I. That can be hard.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:14:34]:

You’ve got a good big experience in that regard, Allison. So let’s get to more of the current environment, right. And especially as it relates to challenges when it comes to messy data swamps that many organizations get stuck in. Now, Ashley, you’re an expert in all things analytics, and then some tell us, what are some of those challenges? Ashley?

 

Ashley Greuel [00:14:56]:

Yeah, I mean, I think we are in an age where there’s just so much data available to us, right? There’s data everywhere. There’s information everywhere. And so I think that a lot of companies can find it challenging to navigate through everything that is out there to get to what matters and even understanding how to use their data to determine what matters and then go after it. I think there’s also still challenges with poor data quality. If data is not being entered into your system or captured correctly and accurately, they’re not able to take action on it. So I like to say garbage in equals garbage out.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:15:33]:

No doubt timeless advice there. And, you know, all data is not equal. Right. As business leaders, we need to pay attention to the true signals, right. That we’ve got to kind of pick out of these overwhelming waves of data and, you know, kind of as I was reading through some of OMNIA partners, some of y’all’s resources that we’ll drop later to 80 20. Wilfredo Pareto, we’re gonna make him really proud. Right. The italian economist way back in the day, trying to find as business leaders, the 80% that the 20% causes.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:16:05]:

Right. I may not say that very eloquently, but all you are nodding your heads and I. So I think I said it. Okay, but Jeff, what would you add to that? This messy data swamp that so many organizations are in these days?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:16:16]:

Yeah, I mean, so, you know, from the human side of it, and actually is our data scientist queen. But, you know, it really is. We see companies from not having any idea where all the spend is. And we all can agree that it’s in every quarter of every company to companies that actually do have the spend. But a lot of them struggle on where to start. They don’t know what to do with it once they have it. They’ve taken the time and the energy to accumulate it, maybe they haven’t. And it’s really about, you know, so many cases where they just don’t know what to do with it and where to start and how to put it into that strategic motion, if you will, for their organization.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:17:05]:

That’s just kind of what we see day in and day out. And they’re the types of conversations that we have with organizations.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:17:11]:

So. And that lack of. Lack of knowing where to start, or, Alison, going back to what you were talking about earlier, trying to pull yourself out of the day to day, right. By doing those two very natural things that happen across the business world every single week. Every single day. We’re leaving tons of money and other resources on the table. We’re leaving lots of friction and complexity in the business that we can pull out. I mean, there’s massive opportunities here, Allison, speak to whether it’s a messy data swap or some of those broader things that Ashley and Jeff spoke to there.

 

Allison Giddens [00:17:44]:

It’s also, I think they’ve alluded to this analysis paralysis, you know, so much data and you just get inundated and you don’t either you don’t know where to start, or it’s a decision fatigue. And you’re like, I just. I don’t know. You know, I’ve got all this stuff now. What? But, yeah, it’s that. It’s the first step. It’s the tiny baby steps. I’m a big, big fan of the psychology behind motivation, and sometimes it just takes just a couple of little wins on the front.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:18:11]:

Right. Break the problems down into bite size pieces. Right. And my hunch is, Ashley and Jeff, you and the, on the partners team do a lot of that because you’re working with big organizations that have a lot of different wherewithal to their operations and to their organization and business model. Any other comments? We’re about to get to some good news. Right. And three ways organizations can pack, really tackle well, some of these challenges and others Ashley and Jeff and Alison have spoken to. Any other comments, Ashley or Jeff, before we, we get there?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:18:44]:

And the other thing that we see, too, is, you know, companies will go through, you know, an acquisition period over ten years where they might add 3456 organizations, and they still have the same seven people in the, in the procurement team. Right. So there seems to always be a little bit of a constraint on, on human capital there for the mid sized company. So it’s tough. I mean, it’s just really, really challenging for the, for the procurement teams to, to get out of that administrative mode and more into the strategic mode. It’s not easy. It’s not easy. Always see it.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:19:20]:

Well, Jeff, I’m so glad you brought that up because so many challenges across global supply chain can be described, as you put it. Right. And I think instantly of the impact on our people. Right. And the burden they have, how much stress we put on, because we just can’t solve some of these things that are tough to solve. But I’ll tell you what, again, looking at data and the opportunities there, imagine if you could save up to 39% when it comes to human resources, or 16% with corporate services, 37% with it, and telecom, 28% in facilities. I’m looking at some of the things that you all have done, and some of the savings opportunities are there. Imagine how that could be reinvested to take some of the burden off the people in the business.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:20:04]:

Right. Allison, that we’re going to get to a $4 million figure towards the end of today’s show, which I can’t wait to get into. But, Allison, when you think about the impact that these, these great challenges have on our people, how, how cool is it to take some of the weight off them, huh?

 

Allison Giddens [00:20:19]:

Yeah. Yeah, for sure. It’s also empowering them to be able to think creatively, to take that information and run with it, because if you’re already in the weeds and you’re already doing this day to day, and all of a sudden, you know, your leadership has said, here you go, here’s some information, here’s the interpretation of it. Now go do good things. It lets everybody do what they’re best at.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:20:40]:

I love that. I love that charge. Go do big things. Right. Let’s take the friction out. Let’s take the obstacles out. And that’s a great segue, Jeff and Ashley, because we’re going to pick y’all’s brain on three better ways. Three ways organizations can do that.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:20:54]:

Do big things. More importantly, with big impact. Right. Big outcomes. If it’s not producing outcomes, why the heck are we doing it? Ashley, Jeff, and Allison. Right, right. All right, so, Ashley, we’re going to go through three ways. We’re going to start with you on the first way.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:21:09]:

Tell us more.

 

Ashley Greuel [00:21:11]:

So, data integration and automation, right. So, going back to the previous conversation, many companies do have an ERP or a P, two P, or some kind of data management system in place. Oftentimes they have multiple because they are decentralized. So they don’t have their data all in one place. And that makes it even more challenging to then action that data. So it’s critical, and it’s crucial to have data integration and automation so that you can see all of your data. It ensures that data from different sources adheres to standardized formats. It reduces inconsistencies.

 

Ashley Greuel [00:21:47]:

The automation piece can automatically identify and cleanse errors in the data, such as duplicates or incomplete records, and that will improve your overall data accuracy. It also reduces the risk of human errors that can contribute to that core data quality, and it minimizes that manual data processing effort.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:22:07]:

Love that. What a great starting point, because that really is a tremendous opportunity we have in this incredible, extraordinary technology era that we’re living in. We’re seeing innovations every hour and clearly are baking that into all that you all do at OMNIA partners. But, Allison, I gotta apologize to all the former organizations I’ve been a part of and how I’ve driven their human error factor wrong when it comes to the data. But, you know, kidding aside, if you look at any study, you know, 1020 percent of manual keystrokes, depending on what you’re looking at, that’s how many errors are being generated. Imagine impact organization. But when it comes to data integration and automation, automation. Allison, your thoughts here on the first way.

 

Allison Giddens [00:22:48]:

My first thought, too, was realizing in a day and time where all you read about is mergers and acquisitions, right? You have everybody. So you’ve got these companies that have been around for 10, 15, 20 years working from a single ERP, and now all of a sudden, they’ve combined with two or three other companies. They have also used their own ERP for ten to 15 to 20 years. You have all these weird overlaps. And again, to Jeff’s point, nobody knows where to start. How do you fix it?

 

Scott W. Luton [00:23:19]:

Well, I’ve got two folks that I bet do know where to start. Alison, I’ll be leaning on y’all, which, by the way, Supply Chain Now is a member of the OMNIA Partners ecosystem. We see value, we don’t just talk about it. Jeff, I’ll get you to, before we move to second the second way, I know you’ve may want to comment, especially given your journey on the great point Alison just made, because all the. Of course m and a oftentimes the outcomes there are, you’re putting a bunch of systems, technology platforms, and, goodness knows, millions of spreadsheets into a sandbox and then say, okay, figure it out. And man, we lose so many opportunities and so much to the top and bottom line, amongst many other repercussions from that. Jeff, your quick comment before we move to the second way.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:24:03]:

Well, I mean, I just think that you need to recognize that you’ve got data in different places, right? Then you’ve got to make sense of it somehow, some way. And if you don’t, it’s just, it’s just a huge miss. I mean, Allison, you hit it spot on. It’s, it’s not uncommon to see organizations with double digit ERP systems, right? And there’s so much. And when that’s, when you let that remain where it is and don’t make an effort to consolidate it, you’re never going to be able to understand where the spend is, how widgets are being procured and how they’re being paid for and all the other downstream things that come with it, right. It just opens up Pandora’s box.

 

Allison Giddens [00:24:47]:

It reminds me, too, of, remember in the, like nineties or the early aughts where you’d have a guy standing on the corner trying to sell baseball tickets and you had a guy in another corner trying to buy them, and you’re like, guys, could somebody talk to each other here?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:25:01]:

Just walk there.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:25:02]:

Oh, man, let’s just connect. But it’s such a great point. Such a great point. And the data integration opportunities that exist today to get all of these systems talking or eliminate some systems, right, and get rid of the too much redundancy that can be found oftentimes, especially in larger organizations, as you have different folks making different technology purchasing decisions, and you blink and you got three or four redundant systems and you don’t. You need one, right. Opportunities abound all right, so the first way is data integration and automation. The second way is more cultural. Jeff, your thoughts there?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:25:40]:

Yeah, so, you know, we have a, we have a roadmap that we take organizations through. And the first one is to make sure, again, I’ll go back to the comment about spend is at every corner of a business silos. It’s important to collaborate with stakeholders because they all have different challenges depending on where they are in an organization. And so it’s, you know, you have to have a voice, you have to have a stakeholder from the various areas of the business. You have to then be able to make projections. You know, what is the goal? Because when spend is in different parts of the business, you know, somebody may be trying to reduce spend. Someone may be able to take it from 25 suppliers to ten, some maybe be looking to improve working capital. Right.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:26:30]:

It goes all over the board. And so it’s important to, as, like, you bring spend together, it’s important that you bring the stakeholders together to understand what are the needs of the business. And then collectively you need to determine, okay, well, what’s the heavy lifts and light lifts. Right. And I think that’s where you start to think about, do I reach out to a GPO partner? Do I talk with suppliers buyers to better understand, am I thinking about this the right way? And then it comes down to, we’ve got 25 or 30 things on a piece of paper that we’ve collected from all the stakeholders. Get some quick wins. Allison, you said it before, get some quick wins. Get things in motion for the business, because that will build momentum that will allow you to prioritize short term to long term and really start to get accomplishments happening within the business.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:27:26]:

And once you do that, then you start to get fancy and high, you know, high tech and start to implement KPI’s and SLA’s and make sure that as you think long term, you know, you now have a sense of what resources are needed and how do I build this out for a long term? And, you know, suppliers are so important in this process. And I would say that there’s nothing more meaningful than to make sure you have a cadence of sitting down with the suppliers doing constructive business reviews. What did we accomplish? Where are we? Are we ahead of or behind of where we thought we would be? What needs to change? And the next thing you know, you can really, really start to get your arms around the spend that’s out there across the business. It minimizes the geographies, the silos, and some really cool successes. Start to happen that again now takes the procurement and supply chain leaders from somewhat administrative to more strategic. Man, that’s the fun part of it.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:28:37]:

Allison, I feel like Jeff just walked us through, like, a cultural transformation.

 

Allison Giddens [00:28:42]:

Like, I understood every bit of that. Yes.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:28:44]:

Yeah, I’m with you, Jeff, and I’m ready to break run through the wall behind me based on what you described there, Allison. And by the way, for the handful of folks out there, we love our acronyms and supply chain he mentioned after taking his first few bites. Then you can establish the key performance indicators, the KPI’s, the SLA’s, the service level agreements, just to make sure everybody’s with us. But what else did you hear there that’s so important culturally, Allison, to take advantage and find a better way that.

 

Allison Giddens [00:29:13]:

Bringing stakeholders together, conversation that happens early because I think that where we do have so many intersections of competing priorities, that there are some priorities and initiatives, I believe, that are almost mutually exclusive, and we have to watch for that. So you might be looking to minimize risk in one area. So you may limit the number of suppliers you have, but then over here, that minimizing the risk of something might introduce risk of something else. And so the conversation that you’re having at the table with all the stakeholders, again, it’s information and it’s knowing how to interpret it from the, from the get go.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:29:53]:

Excellent point. And what Jeff touched on and what you touched on again there, that alignment, you know, what are we trying to do here and have everybody pulling in the same direction? That sounds simple, maybe sounds cliche, perhaps, but that is so relevant across so many different functional areas of a business. On an earlier show, we had a global supply chain executive just hammer home, especially in this age of technology where things are moving so fast. Great communication, which is timeless, but especially as we’re. We’re taking on new initiatives, being able to communicate to the team, because that helps build the trust in the direction where we’re going. That and accomplishments and many others. And that trust, Jeff, Ashley, and Allison, is what moves mountains.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:30:33]:

Right.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:30:34]:

When you can do it together, aligned to and together. So, good stuff there. All right. As much of a data geek I am, Ashley, I love the cultural. That’s one of my favorite parts of the three ways. And now we’re going to move right into the third way, and we’re going to start with Jeff. So, Jeff, we’ve talked about data integration, automation. We’ve talked about building that culture of compliance and transparency and can do.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:30:59]:

What’s the third one, Jeff?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:31:01]:

Utilizing a GPO.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:31:04]:

Hey, and not your grandfather’s or your grandmother’s GPO, but a forward looking, innovative change in how stuff gets done GPO is what I would say. Jeff, your thoughts?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:31:16]:

Yeah, I mean, so, you know, just on me, right. I mean, when we do this with, with members, it’s important to make sure that the company is not viewing the GPO as a replacement or in conflict. It’s. We are actually. A GPO is actually an extension of a procurement team. Right. There’s only so many hours and days and weeks in a year. And our procurement leaders are faced with the direct spend challenges, inflation, which is pretty prominent right now, and you can’t get to it all.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:31:55]:

And so it really becomes working with a GPO, especially in the indirect spend, which we see billions of dollars in the long tail, and you can’t get to it. You need to determine where does a GPO fit in? Where do you want them to focus? Because if you’re going to get to the car rental, great. Maybe you’re not going to get the office products, maybe MRO, which can be extremely large in a long tailspan, where is that complement? Where is that connection? And in a sense, GPO becomes a part and an extension of the procurement organization without you having to pay for it. Right.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:32:33]:

It’s free, man. And I want to pull something out before I move to you. Ashley, you really can’t get to it all. You can’t. You know, we had all thousands of conversations we’ve had here over the years. Some organizations have tried to throw as many members of the team at certain big problems, but as they’ve grown and grown global, we got to leverage a better way, a better process, a better technology, better partners, like Jeff’s describing. So, Ashley, speak to leveraging a GPO as a third way.

 

Ashley Greuel [00:33:04]:

Right. Well, with OMNIA partners, we do have the ability to help you with your spend visibility and take a look at your spend and help you identify those areas where we may be able to help you, as well as take a look at that tail spend. Right. So you might be with one provider, you think you know who you’re with for office products, to use Jeff’s example. But we can see ten additional suppliers there by helping you look at your data and then work with you to potentially implement that solution with one of our supplier partners. And we can do that across the vast majority of our contract, probably, but over 160 contracts on the private sector side, and I think over 1500 contracts on the public sector side. So there’s a lot of opportunity where.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:33:50]:

We can help you and a sense of urgency so we can get quick wins. Quick wins all. I think all three of you all have spoken to how important that is, and not to be rash, but because they exist. Allison, we covered three ways there, including the third being, you know, leverage resources, like a group purchasing organization, an innovative one. Your thoughts are? Allison, that last one.

 

Allison Giddens [00:34:14]:

I think from a small business perspective, it’s always nice to hear the conversation about GPO being there for the leverage for people like us. And I know it’s not exclusive to us, but, you know, having. Having the ability to be able to play with the big dogs, that’s a nice thing. So, yeah, it’s a tough. You know, if you’re always working with certain vendors, because you’re always working with certain vendors, you might not be aware of the opportunities that exist in something like this. So it’s just a. It’s a win you didn’t even know was possible.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:34:49]:

How about that? Send the blind spot. And Allison, hey, there’s good news, too, because while you and I both wish we had billions of data and spend data that we could analyze with Ashley, Jeff and the team, hey, they work many gpos, but especially omnipartners works with companies of all sizes right across many sectors. We’re going to offer some links for you to check it out. And again, I like a deal. I know Allison likes to deal, too. Free to join the community. More on that to come in just a second. But hey, before we get there, we’re going to break out our shades, get real bold and fearless here today as we’re going to be offering up several future trends and predictions.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:35:30]:

I can’t wait to hear what Ashley and Jeff have to say. So what can we expect to see just around the corner, perhaps. Ashley, your thoughts?

 

Ashley Greuel [00:35:40]:

Right. So I think with spend visibility as we look into the future, I think crystal ball, I think we’re going to see enhanced machine learning, more AI being leveraged within the data and the system. So we’re already seeing that, but I think it’s going to be more widely used and much more dependable than perhaps it is today. I think that will then lead to on demand or real time spend analytics. So right now, we’re taking a historical view of the data. Maybe we’re doing quarterly, maybe monthly refreshes for some of those more sophisticated companies out there, but it still takes time to process all that data and we’re still looking backwards. So I think with that enhanced machine learning and AI, we’ll be able to process the data much faster. And be able to act on it much quicker and then also predictive analytics.

 

Ashley Greuel [00:36:31]:

So looking at those trends over time and to be able to predict seasonality trends in the data and where procurement teams should focus their energy.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:36:40]:

Yes. And Ashley, speaking of AI and machine learning, I bet you’re seeing at least what we’re seeing. The most successful organizations are not taking AI and then trying to apply that everywhere. They’re being very targeted. What’s the business opportunity, what’s the business challenge and finding the right tool or technology. Your thoughts here, Ashley?

 

Ashley Greuel [00:37:00]:

That’s absolutely right. So you have to be very strategic and thoughtful in terms of what systems and products you’re going to implement and how you implement them, as it’s still relatively new technology out there.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:37:14]:

But at the same time, as I talk out of both sides of my mouth, Gartner and many other firms are pointing out that leading organizations are finding ways to increase that competitive disadvantage between where they are and where their lower performing companies are. And sometimes you got to bring in experts from the outside that have a track record for doing so. That’s kind of what we’re showcasing here today. Jeff, back to the future. We don’t have flying DeLoreans yet right around the corner, but what predictions would you have, Jeff?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:37:44]:

I want to predict the Phillies in the world. No, I can’t go there.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:37:47]:

Wow.

 

Allison Giddens [00:37:48]:

Wow.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:37:50]:

Hurts my heart. Listen, you’ve been throwing the braves at.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:37:53]:

Me, so.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:37:56]:

I think, listen, with spend visibility, I think we’re early in the game. I think it’s going to be leveraged and utilized more and more in the not too distant future. I think you have to. I mean, if you look at the US, we’ve got unprecedented debt. We’ve got an election coming up that we’re not going to know what’s going on. Inflation is here. Is it going to go down? Meh, probably not. But who knows? Offshore, we’ve got, it’s unsettled geographies out there and we don’t know what that impact is going to be to supply chain.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:38:27]:

So what I would say is uncertainty in the world. Data analytics is going to be needed because it’s one of those things that we could control. There’s things that we can’t control.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:38:40]:

Right, right.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:38:41]:

But there are things that we can control and data and spend visibility is absolutely one of those things. So for those companies that haven’t started no time, like the president, take the baby step. Right, Allison. And for the companies that are down the road, make sure you have a plan. You got the stakeholders and get it engaged because it’s something that can happen today. You don’t have to wait. There’s no way that I don’t think it can be. It’s going to be more and more needed for organizations because you also don’t see the extra head count coming in either.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:39:16]:

So it’s about figuring out how to do it differently and utilizing what’s available to you out there in the universe.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:39:22]:

Excellent point, Jeff. And if we, if folks are feeling like we are playing up the fomo factor, it is because we are. Right. That fear of missing out leading companies. Right. They are uncovering this and they’re bringing more resources to the game and they’re cracking the code again with that inside and outside perspective that’s so important. And letting the experts be the experts. Right.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:39:44]:

Because to Jeff or Ashley, when he all said, you can’t get to it all. You can’t unless you’ve got, I don’t know, seven drones or you name it. But, Allison, what’d you hear there in Ashley and Jeff’s predictions of what’s to come?

 

Allison Giddens [00:39:57]:

It’s really interesting that we are very cautiously optimistic, I think, with, with future, whether it’s utilization of technology and data. You look at all the projections post Covid, of everything from logistics to supply chain and people trying to wrap their heads around a new framework and trying to say, okay, this is how it’s going to be going forward. But I think these predictions are a good stretch. Right? I think that they are. The data, the current data shows that’s, that’s where things are going now, and this is where we’ve got to be pointed in that direction. I’m happy. We just interviewed an intern here at Wintech, and they’re going to be probably just for the month of July. And I was all excited when I saw the resume because they’re doing data analytics, they’re doing data science, they’re doing all these things, and they want to come work for here for a month.

 

Allison Giddens [00:40:48]:

I’m like, that’s so exciting. So I’m encouraged. I think the future is brighten.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:40:55]:

You know, Alice, I share in your optimism. I think the future is bright as well. But I will say we have got an ever challenging road to go, you know, from cyber, from geopolitical turmoil, from the economic. Goodness gracious, Jeff, I can’t wait to get past this election, right, and gain and regain some headspace there, you know, and all of that and a lot more requires us to do business differently. And, folks, that’s why we got to lean into some new resources, like what Ashley and Jeff are talking about. Okay. So we’ve really covered a gamut here. We have established some of the challenges out there right on the front end.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:41:35]:

And then we went through, hey, some good news. Y’all know I love good news. Three ways that you can do things better, be better prepared to tackle these challenges and a whole lot more. Then we got Jeff and Ashley’s predictions for what’s to come, including some, some non serious ones. No, I’m kidding. The Phillies are poised, Jeff. They are the best team, clearly the National League. So that’s the easy bet to make.

 

Allison Giddens [00:41:55]:

Trying to jinx it at this point.

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:41:58]:

Thank you, Allison. It’s a long season. Please.

 

Allison Giddens [00:42:00]:

Well, I think, I think they’re going all the way, too. What do you think? I mean, they’re unbeatable. They’re unbeatable.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:42:06]:

Too. Good. They’re too good, folks, if you join, if you’re joining late, Jeff is a big Philly Philadelphia sports team fan. And Ashley is a Liverpool, her and her family, Liverpool soccer fans. So there’s something for everybody here today. Speaking of resources, right. I want to do this in a couple different ways. I want to, first off, make sure folks know how to connect with both of you all.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:42:29]:

And then we got a couple resources for folks to learn more about what we’ve talked about here today. So, Ashley, what’s the easiest way? How can folks connect with what you’re up to and how can folks connect with you?

 

Ashley Greuel [00:42:41]:

Yeah, just go to our website, OMNIA partners.com. i think there was a playbook that was put in the chat and that will connect directly to me and my team and we can talk about anything and all things spend visibility and data science. So yeah, reach out.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:42:59]:

It’s just that easy. It’s just that easy. And then, Jeff, when you’re not taking in Eagles games or Phillies games and, you know, when you’re not traveling the world helping business leaders cracked the latest chapter and their growth and success. How can folks connect with you? Jeff?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:43:16]:

Sure. So I’m on LinkedIn, you know, or Jeff Doc gilmer@amyapartners.com shoot me a, shoot me a note and I’ll be happy to respond and get engaged with conversation.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:43:26]:

Love that. Okay, Jeff and Ashley, it’s been great to have you all here. Before we all go, though, we’re still going to get Allison’s key patented key takeaway from this jam up conversation. But more, but equally as important. Not more, equally as important. I want to share these resources because I’ve enjoyed diving into both of these, including, we mentioned earlier, the $4 million figure. Well, folks, how about you check out this neat case study where a logistics service provider saved about $4 million in their first year of being an OMNIA partners member. How about that? And also, I pointed out the step by step process.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:44:04]:

I think I love the linear. It’s not perfectly linear, I’m sure, because there’s all kind of stuff you got to do at the same time. But folks, they’ve been there and done it, and the proof is in the pudding like this here. So check out that link to that case study there. And then secondly, folks, again, we’re going to offer up the opportunity to become a member, become a supplier. But in particular, membership is free. Membership is free, right? You’re ally in the purchasing process. Check that out.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:44:33]:

I’m sure Jeff and Ashley and the whole team would welcome you all being a part of the growing community y’all have at OMNIA partners. Right. And to make it even easier, we have dropped links to all of that. The case study right there. You want to click away. We also dropped where the link. You can learn more about joining OMNIA partners free for members, or you can check them out as a supplier. Ashley and Jeff, we’re going to put pressure on Allison now because we’ve got, by my count, I’ve got about 19 key takeaways from the brilliance Ashley and Jeff dropped on today.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:45:09]:

So, Allison, what’s your favorite from today’s conversation? Yeah.

 

Allison Giddens [00:45:14]:

So I ran out of room on my wipe off board. I have a little wipe off board that instead of post it notes, that’s where I take my notes, and I’m officially out of space. I think my biggest takeaway was really going back right to one of the first things Jeff and Ashley said, which encompassed the idea that you’ve got to have the visibility to begin with. You can’t fix problems. You can’t really have goals if you don’t know what it is that you’re working with now, you can’t figure it out where you want to go. So by working with this group and by being able to turn around and say, all right, if I don’t know what I don’t know, what am I missing? To the very people that can help connect you to those resources, you’d be crazy not to. I mean, $4 million, I know that that’s not indicative of everybody, but just to think, like, what? What money are you leaving on the table?

 

Scott W. Luton [00:46:03]:

Have the conversation, Allison. Well said. Have the realization you can’t do it all and that there are better ways and have a conversation. I promise you, as Alison’s pointing out, you’re gonna meet some great people along the process, whether y’all do business together or not. So check it out. A lot of good stuff here today. Really enjoyed our conversation with Ashley and Jeff. Big thanks to Ashley Groro, vice president, operation support and analytics at OMNIA partners.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:46:30]:

Ashley, thanks so much for being here today.

 

Ashley Greuel [00:46:32]:

Thank you. I had a blast. It was great to speak with you.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:46:35]:

We did, too. We did, too. And Jeff Gillmer, senior vice president, private sector, OMNIA Partners resident, Philadelphia sports team fan. Let’s have some more baseball conversations, but take it easy on me and Allison and Braves Nation, would you?

 

Jeff Gillmer [00:46:50]:

Total respect for you, too. Total respect. I enjoy the time. Thanks so much.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:46:54]:

Well, absolutely. Really appreciate what y’all both are doing and all of our conversations we’ve had over the years with our friends OMNIA partners tell you the hits keep on coming with Ashley, Jeff and the team. Allison, always a pleasure. I always appreciate your manufacturing and leadership brilliance and a lot of what you shared here today. Look forward to reconnecting with you soon.

 

Allison Giddens [00:47:15]:

Same with you. I’m excited about today. I learned a lot, and it was great to meet Jeff and Ashley. Thank you.

 

Scott W. Luton [00:47:20]:

It sure was, folks. But now, after everything you’ve heard here over the last hour, the onus is on you. Take one thing like C Ham points out, take one thing from today’s conversation, from what Ashley, Jeff and Allison dropped on us here, put it into practice. Take that first step. Whether it’s a realization from a leadership perspective or picking up the phone, making that first call, whatever it is, it’s all about deeds, not words. So with all that said on behalf of our entire team here at Supply Chain Now, Scott Luton challenging you to do good, give forward, be the change that’s needed, and we’ll see you next time right back here at Supply Chain Now. Thanks, everybody.

 

Narrator [00:47:56]:

Thanks for being a part of our Supply Chain Now community. Check out all of our programming at Supply Chain Now.com 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

Jeff Gillmer is the Senior Vice President for OMNIA Partners, the largest and most experienced organization in group purchasing and supply chain management. At OMNIA Partners, there is power in the partnership. Jeff is a highly focused, results-driven professional with broad–based experience in optimizing business development and profitable revenue generation. He is equipped with well-honed leadership and communication skills in orchestrating multiple operations and building strong business networks to achieve customer goals and objectives. Proven success in transforming business units by instituting sustainable policies and strategies that retain supplier products’ centrality and profitability. Connect with Jeff on LinkedIn. 

Ashley Greuel is the Senior Director of Pricing & Analytics for OMNIA Partners with over 15 years of experience in Procurement and the Group Purchasing space. Prior to her current role, Ashley served as the Director of Strategic Accounts, managing an ongoing partnership with OMNIA Partners’ largest member. Before joining OMNIA Partners, Ashley spent 12 years at Insight Sourcing Group, leading procurement consulting engagements to drive cost savings for clients, as well as managing their Group Purchasing division. Connect with Ashley on LinkedIn.

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Allison Giddens

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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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Kim Reuter

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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 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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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. oasisafrica.org.au), 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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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

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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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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Tandreia Bellamy

Host

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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Marty Parker

Host

Marty Parker serves as both the CEO & Founder of Adæpt Advising and an award-winning Senior Lecturer (Teaching Professor) in Supply Chain and Operations Management at the University of Georgia. He has 30 years of experience as a COO, CMO, CSO (Chief Strategy Officer), VP of Operations, VP of Marketing and Process Engineer. He founded and leads UGA’s Supply Chain Advisory Board, serves as the Academic Director of UGA’s Leaders Academy, and serves on multiple company advisory boards including the Trucking Profitability Strategies Conference, Zion Solutions Group and Carlton Creative Company.

Marty enjoys helping people and companies be successful. Through UGA, Marty is passionate about his students, helping them network and find internships and jobs. He does this through several hundred one-on-one zoom meetings each year with his students and former students. Through Adæpt Advising, Marty has organized an excellent team of affiliates that he works with to help companies grow and succeed. He does this by helping c-suite executives improve their skills, develop better leaders, engage their workforce, improve processes, and develop strategic plans with detailed action steps and financial targets. Marty believes that excellence in supply chain management comes from the understanding the intersection of leadership, culture, and technology, working across all parts of the organization to meet customer needs, maximize profit and minimize costs.

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Laura Lopez

Marketing Coordinator

Laura Lopez serves as our Supply Chain Now Marketing Coordinator. She graduated from Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Occidente in Mexico with a degree in marketing. Laura loves everything digital because she sees the potential it holds for companies in the marketing industry. Her passion for creativity and thinking outside the box led her to pursue a career in marketing. With experience in fields like accounting, digital marketing, and restaurants, she clearly enjoys taking on challenges. Laura lives the best of both worlds - you'll either catch her hanging out with her friends soaking up the sun in Mexico or flying out to visit her family in California!

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Jake Barr

Host

An acknowledged industry leader, Jake Barr now serves as CEO for BlueWorld Supply Chain Consulting, providing support to a cross section of Fortune 500 companies such as Cargill, Caterpillar, Colgate, Dow/Dupont, Firmenich, 3M, Merck, Bayer/Monsanto, Newell Brands, Kimberly Clark, Nestle, PepsiCo, Pfizer, Sanofi, Estee Lauder and Coty among others. He's also devoted time to engagements in public health sector work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. At P&G, he managed the breakthrough delivery of an E2E (End to End) Planning Transformation effort, creating control towers which now manage the daily business globally. He is recognized as the architect for P&G’s demand driven supply chain strategy – referenced as a “Consumer Driven Supply Chain” transformation. Jake began his career with P&G in Finance in Risk Analysis and then moved into Operations. He has experience in building supply network capability globally through leadership assignments in Asia, Latin America, North America and the Middle East. He currently serves as a Research Associate for MIT; a member of Supply Chain Industry Advisory Council; Member of Gartner’s Supply Chain Think Tank; Consumer Goods “League of Leaders“; and a recipient of the 2015 - 2021 Supply Chain “Pro’s to Know” Award. He has been recognized as a University of Kentucky Fellow.

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Marcia Williams

Host

Marcia Williams, Managing Partner of USM Supply Chain, has 18 years of experience in Supply Chain, with expertise in optimizing Supply Chain-Finance Planning (S&OP/ IBP) at Large Fast-Growing CPGs for greater profitability and improved cash flows. Marcia has helped mid-sized and large companies including Lindt Chocolates, Hershey, and Coty. She holds an MBA from Michigan State University and a degree in Accounting from Universidad de la Republica, Uruguay (South America). Marcia is also a Forbes Council Contributor based out of New York, and author of the book series Supply Chains with Maria in storytelling style. A recent speaker’s engagement is Marcia TEDx Talk: TEDxMSU - How Supply Chain Impacts You: A Transformational Journey.

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Luisa Garcia

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Luisa Garcia is a passionate Marketer from Lagos de Moreno based in Aguascalientes. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from Universidad Autonoma de Aguascalientes, Mexico. She specializes in brand development at any stage, believing that a brand is more than just a name or image—it’s an unforgettable experience. Her expertise helps brands achieve their dreams and aspirations, making a lasting impact. Currently working at Vector Global Logistics in the Marketing team and as podcast coordinator of Logistics With Purpose®. Luisa believes that purpose-driven decisions will impact results that make a difference in the world.

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Astrid Aubert

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Astrid Aubert was born in Guadalajara, she is 39 years old and has had the opportunity to live in many places. She studied communication and her professional career has been in Trade Marketing for global companies such as Pepsico and Mars. She currently works as Marketing Director Mexico for Vector Global Logistics. She is responsible for internal communications and marketing strategy development for the logistics industry. She is a mother of two girls, married and lives in Monterrey. She defines herself as a creative and innovative person, and enjoys traveling and cooking a lot.

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host

Sofia Rivas Herrera is a Mexican Industrial Engineer from Tecnologico de Monterrey University, class 2019. Upon graduation she earned a scholarship to study MIT’s Graduate Certificate in Logistics and Supply Chain Management (GCLOG) 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. Former Data Analyst within the airport industry in Latin America at Pacific Airport Group, performing benchmarking reports and predictive analysis of future market behavior.

Currently working as Sr. Staffing Analyst within the S&OP team in Mexico at the biggest ecommerce company in Latin America: Mercado Libre. Responsible for workforce forecasting and planning through the analysis of demand, productivity, capacity, cost & time constraints. Sofia self identifies as Supply Chain Ambassador, sharing her passion for the field in her daily life. She has been recognized as upcoming thought leader in the field and invited to participate in several podcasts (Freight Path Podcast, Supply Chain Revolution Podcast, Let’s Talk Supply Chain, Industrificados) to discuss topics such as digital transformation, automation and future skillsets for supply chain professionals.

She is a frequent featured guest at Supply Chain Now and appointed co-host for their new series Supply Chain Now en Español. Global Ambassador for ISCEAs Sustainable Supply Chain Professional Certification (CSSCP) and keynote speaker at World Supply Chain Forum 2021 by ISCEA Indonesia.

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Karin Bursa

Host

Karin Bursa is the 2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year and the Host of the TEKTOK Digital Supply Chain Podcast powered by Supply Chain Now. With more than 25 years of supply chain and technology expertise (and the scars to prove it), Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and share their success stories. Today, she helps B2B technology companies introduce new products, capture customer success and grow global revenue, market share and profitability. In addition to her recognition as the 2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year, Karin has also been recognized as a 2019 and 2018 Supply Chain Pro to Know, 2009 Technology Marketing Executive of the Year and a 2008 Women in Technology Finalist. 

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Vin Vashishta

Host

Vin Vashishta is the author of ‘From Data To Profit’ (Wiley 2023). It’s the playbook for monetizing data and AI. Vin is the Founder of V-Squared and built the business from client 1 to one of the world’s oldest data and AI consulting firms. His background combines nearly 30 years in strategy, leadership, software engineering, and applied machine learning.

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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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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 & Host

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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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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Constantine Limberakis

Host

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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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

Director, Customer Experience

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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Mary Kate Love

Chief of Staff & Host

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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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

Controller

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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