barcode using vb.net THE PATH TO SUCCESSFUL COLLABORATION in Software

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THE PATH TO SUCCESSFUL COLLABORATION
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Your success depends on the ability of both you and your partner to execute according to your mutual agreement. While every partnership is different, the following guidelines for success apply to all:
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Master internal collaboration before trying to work with external partners. Define the appropriate degree of collaboration for each partner segment.
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CHAPTER 4 Core Discipline 4: Build the Right Collaborative Model
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F I G U R E 4 5
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The evolution of collaboration.
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st ic or al Ac t l ua tim al Th e e or tic al
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Extensive Collaboration Required
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Limited Collaboration Required Vertically Integrated Synchronized Coordinated Cooperative Transactional Internal Core Competency Focused
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Be sure that each party has a stake in the outcome of the collaboration. Share benefits, gains, losses, and risks. Be prepared to share information you once considered proprietary. Mutual trust is integral to successful collaboration. Set clear expectations for each party. Use technology to support your collaborative relationships.
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Master Internal Collaboration First
If you can t collaborate within the four walls of your own company, your chances of success with external partners are small. Internal collaboration helps to test your company s readiness to achieve common goals by aligning processes, systems, and organizational structures all in a lowrisk environment. And internal success provides proof positive that the benefits of collaboration are real.
Strategic Supply Chain Management
A key requirement of effective collaboration is shared metrics, but all too often these are missing.
The fact is that many companies don t collaborate particularly well, even internally. Departments or functions may be unwilling to compromise, even if a proposed concession is for the greater good of the company. The idea that successful collaboration will result in lower overall costs or improved service levels can be difficult to substantiate, so it may be viewed with skepticism. A key requirement of effective collaboration is shared metrics, but all too often these are missing. Internal collaboration actually can be more difficult than external collaboration due to a range of complicating factors. For instance, a drive at the highest levels of a company to institute accountability for performance at the business unit or functional level can hinder effective collaboration. Moreover, complex systems for setting transfer prices and cross-charges are designed to allocate costs fairly across the company as a whole but often promote functional performance at the expense of enterprisewide cost performance. And reward structures that link individual compensation to business-unit performance can reinforce business-unit autonomy. These measures can be counterproductive, eliminating many of the key benefits of collaboration: economies of scale and scope, greater efficiency, knowledge sharing, and less duplication of effort. Articulating the benefits of collaborating with external partners also may be easier than making the case internally. Collaborating with a customer, for instance, can increase revenues and deliver greater customer satisfaction. Collaborating with suppliers can decrease costs, shorten response times, improve reliability of supply, and lower inventory levels. Internally, the benefits may not be as clear. Why forecast by item instead of product family, for instance The greater the level of detail, the easier it is for the supply chain organization to plan for material supply and ensure product availability. For the sales group that prepares the forecast, though, this added detail may seem like extra work with no clear benefit. The supply chain organization needs to quantify the inherently qualitative reasons for changing the process and to get the sales force to buy into it. Finally, business units or functions may have incompatible information systems. Without a common data platform, shared functionality, and standardized metrics, these disparate systems can block effective collaboration. Despite these challenges, internal collaboration is worth the effort. It can confer a competitive edge and lay the groundwork for external
CHAPTER 4 Core Discipline 4: Build the Right Collaborative Model
collaboration. First you ll need to dispel the perception of internal collaboration as a zero-sum game, where one department s gain is another s loss. This means modeling and clearly articulating the benefits to your company as a whole and making sure that your existing infrastructure doesn t discourage collaboration because of a real or perceived negative impact on a function or business unit. Logitech is a company where the need for internal collaboration is obvious. It s an international market leader in personal interface products such as computer mice, keyboards, interactive entertainment peripherals, and audio products. The company has a very strong brand presence, selling its products in tens of thousands of retail outlets in over 100 countries, as well as on hundreds of Web-based retail sites and through relationships with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). Logitech excels at highvolume manufacturing and distributes its products worldwide. The company s supply chain strategy mirrors its emphasis on award-winning designs and price performance and has led to the creation of a highly efficient company-owned manufacturing facility, as well as relationships with numerous supply chain partners, including original device manufacturers (ODMs) and packaging houses. The company s primary manufacturing facility and the majority of its suppliers are located in Asia. Logitech s product line is both broad and deep. This complexity, combined with the fact that most production is done in a region of the world far removed from many of the end customers, places tremendous emphasis on the need for excellent planning and efficient processes to move products from manufacturing sites to regional distribution centers. As is typical of many sellers of retail products, Logitech relies on attractive packaging to catch the customer s eye. Packaging is very important to us, explains Nolan Perry, director of project management services. The package is really an extension of the product itself. It needs to showcase the product while projecting an image consistent with our strategy of high quality and ongoing innovation. For many products, this means form-fitted, clear packaging that highlights the product s look and feel from any angle. The package also needs to be well suited to retailers displays, for it may need to stand on a shelf or hang from a rack. This emphasis on appearance can conflict with efficient supply chain operations. Moving product from Asia to other regions of the world is facilitated by easy stacking on pallets and optimization of the quantity that can be accommodated in a standard shipping container. Gray Williams, Logitech s vice president of worldwide supply chain, says, Unfortunately, what is good for the retailer isn t always good for product distribution. Retail packages come in odd sizes and shapes, and this can make them hard
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