Customer Driven Innovation
Wednesday, February 02, 2011
Today we are officially launching version 2.0 of our Predictable Supply Network. Behind every company is a story of how it learns and evolves with the marketplace. As a company we always believe that the best ideas and needs are expressed by our customers. It is our job to listen, learn and collaborate with people that share our vision and partner in the development of the product.
The seeds of this release were planted more than a year ago when we first introduced our innovative Network approach to supply chain leaders. At every meeting, we had the same exact reaction. “Wow, we never thought of approaching the problem the way you have.” The fundamental value of a collaborative network of inter-operable business processes in an integrate-once and inter-operate with everyone framework was immediately evident.
However, the access and integration of the network into their current business applications and processes had to be automated. This is when you turn humble and let the customers chart your course. Our early partners, who include Catalent, Patheon, Sharp and a number of major pharmaceutical companies we cannot name, told us explicitly what we needed to do. They committed their time and a team to work with us to define and create the next set of capabilities.
The customer requirements were clearly expressed:
- “We need integration into our ERP”
- “We have multiple ERPs so we need to have an harmonization of the information formats for our systems”
- “We want you to handle the mapping of the data to our supply chain partners”
- “We want a solution that can allow us to integrate with all our partners without having to invest in individual integrations with each of our partners”
- “We need to link the information across business processes including ones that are not supported by our ERP”
The commitment from our partners/customers included assigning teams to share information and actively work with us on the solution, as well as engaging in multi-day workshops with the executive team to identify and maximize the value for their business. As we designed the solution we iterated in a tight loop with teams across multiple companies. Our shared belief is that we are leading the industry to a new working model that will mutually benefit all parts of the supply chain.
With this release, we are not only providing the service to the larger marketplace to join in on our transformation of the supply chain platform, but we are also integrated with Catalent, Patheon and Sharp. This enables hundreds of Pharmaceutical and BioTech companies to now join in and seamlessly collaborate on Production Tracking, Material Tracking and Inventory Monitoring. With a single integration into the TraceLink Network these companies can inter-operate with any other company on the TraceLink Network. As part of the TraceLink Network, the integration is on your terms. Whether you want to integrate using SAP IDocs, EDI, XML or CSV, we have the support. Furthermore, you work with us to determine the formats you need and we will add the support.
This is a turning point for the industry and we are very grateful for the tremendous contributions by our partners. This process reinforced the values we operate with as a company.
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