Chicago — Sourcing in a global economy is a piece of cake. All you have to do is master a few drivers like cost, skills, risk, speed and innovation.
But that's the new normal, according to William Crane, founder and CEO of IndustryStar, a supply chain management firm in Ann Arbor, Mich. Crane spoke July 9 at the Plastics News Financial Summit in Chicago.
"Global sourcing can come from low-cost country suppliers like Mexico, China, Malaysia or Poland," Crane said. "There's a focus on sourcing locally and a shift away from sole sourcing to reduce supply risk."
He added that there continues to be "a huge push" for outsourcing components, and that strategy now applies to areas such as logistics and noncore activities. This trend and the on-demand economy "is disrupting a number of industries" through companies such as Amazon and Uber.
Crane recommended that plastics and other manufacturing firms "treat supply partners as an expansion of your team."
"Select firms with proven experience and align with firms that are different from your competitors," he said. "It's also a good idea to look outside your industry for inspiration."