In addition, in order to provide a resource for those of our readers who currently are looking to invest in technologies and service to improve their supply and demand chains, we asked solution providers to specify which areas of the supply and demand chain they enable. This information, as reported by the enablers, is listed in the tables included in this article. We further requested that enablers cite their target customer size and target industry verticals, briefly describe the key problems they solve for their customers and provide an equally brief description of their key differentiators.
How best to use the Supply & Demand Chain Executive 100 as a resource for enabling your own company's supply and demand chain? We would suggest reviewing the tables included in this article to determine which solution providers can help enable those specific areas of the supply and demand chain that are current priorities at your enterprise. Then review the information on those providers listed below in order to assemble a list of appropriate enablers. The rest of the process, of course, is up to you, but we believe that you will find the 2004 Supply & Demand Chain Executive 100 listing an educational place to start.
2004 Supply & Demand Chain Executive 100
Key: Name (Headquarters, year founded). Empl. = number of employees in 2003 (+/- increase versus 2002). Custs. = total customer base in 2003 (+/- increase versus 2002). Impl. = implementation time (estimated average across customer base). Train. = end-user training period (estimated average across customer base). Payback = "time to payoff" on customer investment (estimated average across customer base). Svcs. = services cost as a percentage of hardware/software costs (as a ratio or percent, estimated average across customer base). Key custs. = name(s) of publicly announced reference customer(s). Hrs = hours. Dys = days. Wks = weeks. Mnths = months. N/R = not reported or not applicable. Information not included in a specific listing either was not reported or was not among factors considered for inclusion of a specific enabler in the "100" list.
Acom Solutions (Long Beach, CA, 1983). Empl.: 80 (+0%); custs.: 3,000 (+10%); impl.: 6 wks; train.: 5 dys; payback: 12-18 mnths; svcs.: 15%. Key custs.: MLO Products Inc., St. George Crystal, Sierra Wireless.
Key Problems Solved: Rapid enablement of e-commerce capabilities under financial and trading partner pressure; equipping trading partners to conduct electronic transactions in all data formats and data transports.
Key Differentiators: True universal data transformation tool; low-cost, high-performance; runs under MS Windows; on-board SQL database; compatible with all ERP and operating system software.
AcquireX (Long Beach, CA, 1999). Empl.: 30 (+25%); custs.: 300+ (+20%); impl.: 4-8 wks; train.: 1 wk; payback: 3-6 wks; svcs.: N/R. Key custs.: Ascent Media; University of California, Irvine; University of Chicago.
Key Problems Solved: Customers say: Since going with AcquireX, the number of warehouse workers has been reduced by 40%, so the district is saving greatly in salary and benefits. All the associated costs of storage, delivery, spoilage have been reduced accordingly.
Key Differentiators: On-demand model reduces risk and lowers cost for rapid ROI. AcquireX offers a dedicated post-sale account manager, live customer service and full content management to load and maintain contracted pricing
Acsis Inc. (Marlton, NJ, 1996). Empl.: 100 (+15%); custs.: 75 (+10%); impl.: 24 wks; train.: 1-2 wks; payback: 9-12 wks; svcs.: 3%. Key custs.: N/R.
Key Problems Solved: Acsis solutions take users' data from the warehouse and factory floor to external suppliers and customers to enable the most effective and efficient data optimization possible.
Key Differentiators: An early implementer and adopter of RFID, Acsis combines proven software applications with service-oriented approach to offer real-time visibility across the extended supply chain.