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Archive for the ‘APICS Operations Management Now’ Category

APICS Now: Operations Expert Takes Lead at Apple
September 2011

September 2, 2011, edition of APICS Operations Management Now

Abe Eshkenazi
APICS CEO
Abe Eshkenazi
CSCP, CPA, CAE

Last week, news sites and social media locales alike were buzzing with news of the departure of Apple CEO Steve Jobs, who will become chair of the company’s board. Tim Cook will take over as the company’s chief executive officer.

Who? You might be asking yourself. Cook was Apple’s chief operating officer, and he has run the company in the past: In 2004, when Jobs was recovering from pancreatic cancer surgery; in 2009, when Jobs required a liver transplant; and, most recently, earlier in 2011 when Jobs took another medical leave.

According to a August 25, 2011, Wall Street Journal article, “Cook isn’t the showman that Mr. Jobs is, but people who know him call him an ‘operational genius’ who is responsible for crafting Apple’s current supply chain system and helping transform the company into one of the most efficient electronics manufacturers today.”

While many industry experts have voiced concern that Jobs is a tough act to follow, Cook brings his own brand of smarts to his new position. In a Bloomberg article, Adam Satariano and Peter Burrows write: “Cook’s operational skills have served as the backbone of Apple’s expansion since he joined the company from Compaq Computer Corp. in 1998. His inventory management skills allowed Apple to sell iMac computers in a broad palette of colors instead of just beige. The company keeps up with demand for its iPods, iPhones, and iPads, with new products delivered to the customer’s doorstep often in less than 48 hours.”

Moving to the C-suite

Now more than ever, companies are relying on supply chain and operations management experts to guide them through the labyrinth of this post-recession market. Tim Cook is a prominent example of this reliance__and, in his case, he earned elevation to Apple’s top executive spot.

How does your industry knowledge assist your company’s top decision makers? Are you ready to become one of those decision makers yourself? Earning your APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) designation is the preeminent way to demonstrate significant commitment to your profession and your career, distinguish yourself as an industry expert, and excel with your newly acquired specialized knowledge.

APICS is working to launch enhanced CSCP courseware for 2012, which includes more detailed information on risk, strategy, sustainability, and global supply chain. If you have been contemplating earning your CSCP designation, 2012 is a great time to start your studies. The new courseware, like the CSCP courseware of the past, will position you to most effectively lead your company into a new era of business.

Optimizing your Employability
January 2010

January 15, 2009, edition of APICS Operations Management Now

Abe Eshkenazi
APICS CEO
Abe Eshkenazi
CSCP, CPA, CAE

Last week, the Wall Street Journal published an article outlining how millions of unemployed workers face a daunting job market in 2010.

“Structural employment may be a far bigger challenge to policymakers than turning around the economy,” writes journalist Kathleen Madigan, in her January 7 article. “Workers laid off in a shrinking industry may not have the talents needed in an expanding sector.” She uses the example of mortgage brokers who may not be cut out for nursing work. Further, federal and state budgets increasingly are limited, meaning education funding is scarce.

“For individual households, long-term joblessness is devastating. For the economy, the loss of labor skills represents another wedge between actual and potential growth in output and income,” Madigan writes.

Tapping your resources

The continuing turmoil of the recession is the unemployment devastation that follows. APICS research shows that operations and supply chain management professionals might be uniquely situated to weather, and even move ahead, during these uncertain times.

This week, APICS releases the results of the Operations Management Employment Outlook for the fourth quarter of 2009. Some big news: In contrast to the story laid out in the Wall Street Journal, 2009 year-end survey results show a positive outlook for employment in the five operations management occupational areas—execution and control of operations, purchasing/customer relationship management, quality, resource planning, and supply chain management. Click to view the Operations Management Employment Outlook.

The latest job outlook survey brought to light the top six areas of important business knowledge, which are broken down by job category. If you are unemployed or underemployed in one of the operations management occupational areas, I urge you to look at the survey’s findings and evaluate your own skills with those valued by employers. This information is available exclusively to APICS members, and it can help you identify your own learning needs.

APICS members have access to many valuable professional development resources. According to our 2009 member survey, one of the APICS resources most valued is APICS magazine. Recently, the magazine underwent a dramatic graphic transformation, which was unveiled in the January/February 2010 issue. I believe you will find this updated look more accessible and interesting. Our magazine staff remains committed to bringing you the most relevant and applicable content.

APICS provides a wealth of tools and resources that can help you make the most of your career. Are you taking full advantage of what’s being offered to you?

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How APICS Operations Management Now relates to you

Operations management is everywhere. Today, operations management professionals have unprecedented impacts on the global economy. Consider these questions and how today’s edition of APICS Operations Management Now relates to you and your career:

  • The Wall Street Journal mentions the loss of labor skills and how lacking those might separate you from potential job growth or eliminate you as a candidate from a new position. How might you refresh and build your skills in order to improve your job and industry knowledge?
  • For those of you who have experienced long-term joblessness before, what advice can you give professionals who now are facing it?
  • The APICS Operations Management Employment Outlook survey shows a positive forecast for operations management professionals. Prior to these survey results, what had been your assumption on industry outlook? How has this information altered that perspective?

Not an APICS member? Join today.

Source: www.apics.org | Subscribe to Operations Management Now

Manufacturing May be Leading Economic Recovery
December 2009

December 11, 2009, edition of APICS Operations Management Now

Abe Eshkenazi
APICS CEO
Abe Eshkenazi
CSCP, CPA, CAE

Last week, the Associated Press (AP) offered some interesting economic recovery news. The provocative headline, “Manufacturing counties lead surprise job comeback, outperforming rest of nation,” got my attention.

“Counties with the heaviest reliance on manufacturing income are posting some of the biggest employment gains of the nation’s early economic recovery, writes AP Writer Mike Baker. “This is a big change from just half a year ago, when some economists worried that widespread layoffs by U.S. manufacturers might be part of an irreversible trend in that sector.” Baker interviewed furniture manufacturers in North Carolina and recreational vehicle (RV) makers in Elkhart County, Indiana.

AP conducts a monthly analysis called the Economic Stress Index, which measures unemployment, foreclosure, and bankruptcy rates to monitor the economic climate of more than 3,100 counties in the United States. Counties with a high saturation of manufacturing jobs have measured lower stress than the national average since March 2009.

Experts are citing multiple explanations for manufacturing’s strength early in the recovery-“Cash for Clunkers,” the weak U.S. dollar, the need to replace exhausted inventories and meet pent-up demand, and more.

The AP story quoted Derald Bontrager, the president and chief operating officer of Indiana RV manufacturer, Jayco. “Manufacturing jobs are here to stay, and they’re coming back,” Bontrager said. This summer, Jayco decision makers recalled or hired 200 previously laid-off workers. The company experienced an unexpected sales boom, and is still working to meet demand.

Preparing for your future

If early signs show manufacturing will play a role in leading the United States out of recession, how should you prepare to maximize your opportunities? The APICS Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) is a great place to start. The APICS CPIM program educates students in the concepts, tools, topics, terminology, and integration of topics within operations.

The APICS CPIM Courseware Modules, Detailed Scheduling and Planning, and Strategic Management of Resources have been entirely rewritten, and the design of the course materials has been updated. As part of the process, feedback from instructors was solicited and incorporated as appropriate. Plus, the new content was reviewed by a team of domestic and international subject matter experts.

This rigorous process ensures that operations management professionals all over the world can benefit from APICS CPIM classes and improve their companies’ overall operations. The new APICS CPIM program materials now are available for pre-order from the APICS Bookstore and will begin shipping on December 14, 2009.

If you’ve been thinking about starting the APICS CPIM process, I urge you to do so. Now is the time to take control of your professional well being and arm yourself with the tools to be a leader in your field.

In other news

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How Operations Management Now Relates to You

Operations management is everywhere. Today, operations management professionals have unprecedented impacts on the global economy. Consider these questions and how today’s edition of APICS Operations Management Now relates to you and your career.

  • What predictions do you have about manufacturing job comebacks in your community? How will it affect your job position?
  • More job availability means more competition within the workplace and, consequently, more room for promotion. What professional assets can you strengthen to remain competitive?
  • Counties with a high level of manufacturing jobs have displayed lower stress than the national average. What insights can you glean from this statistic in relation to your organization?

Not an APICS member? Join today.

Source: www.apics.org | Subscribe to Operations Management Now

So, This Is Recovery?
August 2009

August 14, 2009, edition of APICS Operations Management Now

Abe Eshkenazi
APICS CEO
Abe Eshkenazi
CSCP, CPA, CAE

Despite news that the U.S. economy is rebounding and job losses are slowing, a Wednesday headline in the Washington Post gives voice to the continued unease among workers: “A Recovery Only a Statistician Can Love.” Case in point: The U.S. Labor Department reported that business productivity has increased to an annual rate of 6.3 percent. (The annual average was 2.6 percent from 2000 to 2008.) The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported last week that unemployment actually dropped in June—after it had been increasing for months. However, the Washington Post’s Annys Shin writes the recovery’s “existence will be confirmed by statistics, but, over at least the next year, the benefits are unlikely to materialize in the form of higher wages or tax receipts or more jobs.”

Consider the improving productivity rates we are seeing in many parts of the world affected by the global recession. Much of the increase has come from businesses cutting hours, while maintaining production and output. Therefore, workers are expected to do the same amount of work in less time, and company leaders are putting off hiring.

Last week, in the New York Times article titled “Job Losses Slow, Signaling Momentum for a Recovery,” Economist Ian C. Shepherdson said, “Employers are no longer in a panic. The pressure they felt to get rid of workers in a hurry is diminishing. What we don’t see yet is enough momentum in the economy to convince companies to hire again.”

Operations Outlook

So, what is the outlook for people in the APICS community specifically? APICS research reveals some interesting information. As part of the APICS Employment Outlook, data recently was gathered and analyzed by researchers at APICS and the University of North Carolina, Wilmington. Results show 47 percent of respondents with hiring responsibility indicate they anticipate hiring new employees within in the next 12 months, with 72 percent of those planning to hire within one or more of the following operational areas: execution and control of operations, purchasing and customer relationship management, quality, resource planning, and supply chain management.

Further, survey respondents indicate that APICS CPIM designees get paid, on average, approximately 10 percent more than those without the designation. Similarly, APICS CSCP designees earn approximately 12 percent more than those without an APICS CSCP certification.

Today, APICS is releasing its Supply Chain Manager Competency Model, which follows guidelines set by the Employment and Training Administration of the U.S. Department of Labor. The model will serve as a guide for individuals considering careers in supply chain management, professionals seeking advancement, and human resource managers hiring in this fast-growing field.

This data analysis and the Supply Chain Manager Competency Model are just two examples of a wide variety of resources APICS offers to help supply chain and operations managers succeed. As you prepare to find your place in the economic recovery, I encourage you to investigate all the valuable resources APICS offers. As you wade through data and mixed messages, APICS is an important asset in helping you to determine how best to maximize your career potential.

In other news

Related APICS Education

Related APICS Resources

How Operations Management Now Relates to You

Operations management is everywhere. Today, operations management professionals have unprecedented impacts on the global economy. Consider these questions and how today’s edition of APICS Operations Management Now relates to you and your career.

  • What do you anticipate the unforeseen benefits of the upturn in the economy will be in the workforce? If not “in the form of higher wages or tax receipts or more jobs,” as Annys Shin writes, then what should professionals look forward to?
  • With job losses slowing and workers expecting to do the same amount of work with less staff, what role will career advancement play in the rebounding economy?
  • How can you use the APICS Supply Chain Manager Competency Model to your benefit? Who else—colleagues, managers, human resource professionals—would benefit from examining the model?

Not an APICS member? Join today.

Source: www.apics.org | Subscribe to Operations Management Now




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