Global Supply Chain

9 Compelling Reasons for Global Supply Chain Control

Ned Blinick

Co-Founder, 3rdwave

Global supply chains are comprised of a web of networks including suppliers, manufacturers, carriers, 3PLs, Customs Brokers, Carters, and Warehouses. In this heterogeneous global supply chain environment where most often many of the core skills reside outside the organization the question of "Who controls the supply chain?" is a legitimate question to ask. The first thing is to define what we mean by global supply chain control. For us at 3rdwave, control is the ability to influence the activities in the supply chain to optimally achieve the corporate global supply chain objectives. That means being able to influence the actions of 3rd party actors to ensure the right product, arrives at the right place, at the right time, and at the right price.The basic and relatively simplistic reason for outsourcing production is that it is less expensive to produce a minimally (subjective) acceptable product internationally than it is to produce it domestically. Without going into a discussion on the advantages and disadvantages of globalization and whether organizations truly achieve this objective (lower cost) in practice, what is indisputable is that those companies that have greater control over their global supply chains significantly outperform their peers.Software solutions to control global supply chains used to be available only to large organizations that had significant budget and volumes. Today, solutions, like 3rdwave, are developed to drive down the cost of GTM management and deliver both operational capability and management oversight through analytic tools at a very cost effective price. Importantly, these solutions are able to take advantage of the newer open architectures which minimizes or eliminates the need for IT resources.How do best-in-class global companies outperform their peers? (Aberdeen Research Paper - Leveraging Global Trade Management (GTM) for Frictionless eCommerce - Feb 2016)

  • They are 57% more likely to have access to trade content
  • They are 47% more likely to have access to import in-transit shipment visibility
  • They are 48% more likely to have access to export in-transit shipment status
  • They are 35% more likely to have landed cost capability and visibility

Why do best-in-class organizations outperform their peers?

  1. They can optimize their global supply by managing their suppliers to reduce lead-times - this includes being able to monitor supplier purchase order performance to ensure on time delivery to destination.
  2. They can manage their logistics provider to ensure that product is shipped as planned. Shipment status visibility is a critical capability enabling shipments to be managed to meet delivery needs.
  3. They can manage their pre-delivered import shipments, and make sure that product is routed to the optimal destination. Knowing what product is contained in the inbound shipment provides the opportunity to manage optimally the delivery of product to meet demand at the lowest possible supply chain cost.
  4. They can manage the clearance of their imported product at the point of entry, minimizing time in port. By providing Customs and PGAs complete and accurate information, shipments are cleared expeditiously through ports of entry, making the product available for distribution or sales.
  5. They can effectively move their shipments from the pier to reduce demurrage or detention costs. Shipment visibility and status at the pier is important to reduce needless demurrage or detention costs.
  6. They can trace product to optimize inventory control. Purchase-to-Receipt product visibility means that safety stocks levels can be reduced, cross-docking opportunities optmized and direct shipments capatalized upon.
  7. They can effectively manage their duty drawback and claims process to optimize lowest product cost. Managing duty drawback results in reduced import operating costs.
  8. They can accurately estimate, validate, and report on total landed cost...for every product on every shipment. Accurate estimating and validating landed costs enables the organization to evaluate the effectiveness of their global sourcing activity, and make informed decisions about improving their operations.
  9. They can analyze their supply chain providers to manage service levels. Performance analysis of all global trade partners is critical to being able to develop an execution capability that allows for supply chains to optimize performance holistically.

About 3rdwave:

3rdwave simplifies global trade through automation. 3rdwave is a GTM platform that delivers total global supply chain visibility, minimizes manual data entry, streamlines business process, and provides contextual information enabling its users to make informed decisions to reduce global supply chain risk. It's a cloud-based platform that requires minimal IT resources for quick implementation. 3rdwave ensures that companies meet the highest levels of GTM execution and Trade Compliance conformance.

Ned Blinick is Chief Product Officer of He has been involved in global trade for too many decades and he loves making the global supply chain simpler for everyone. If you would like to engage with Ned he would really enjoy the opportunity of communicating with you. He can be reached at (416) 510 8800 ext 234 or at