Computer Science and Engineering
A recent study found that supply-chain problems cost companies between 9 and 20 percent of their value over a six-month period (T.J. Becker, 2000). The problems range from part shortages to poorly utilized plant capacity. When you place this in the context of the overall business-to-business (B2B) market expected to reach US$7 trillion by 2004 (37 percent of which is projected to be e-commerce sales), it is easy to see that effective supply-chain management (SCM) tools could save companies billions of dollars. Attempts to automate solutions to these problems are complicated by the need for the different companies in a supply chain to maintain the integrity and confidentiality of their information systems and operations. The modeling technologies currently used within the manufacturing business-to-business standards communities, such as the Open Applications Group (http://www.openapplications.org) and RosettaNet (http://www.rosettanet.org) do a good job of capturing user requirements. Unfortunately, current technologies do not explicitly link the requirements to formal process models. This missing link is crucial to efficient SCM implementations.
Published in IEEE Internet Computing, Volume 5, Issue 4, 2001, pages 90-93.
© 2001 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)