Isn't this wonderful news for the global Supply Chain community that a Supply Chain Management guru is at the helm of the most valuable company in the world?
After all these years of struggle for recognition, after fighting to be present at board level, operational excellence has risen to the top of priorities and that too at again at the world's most valuable company.
While not a lot is known about Tim Cook, he is the man credited with dramatically increasing margins at Apple. After spending 6 years as VP for Corporate Materials at Compaq, he was hired by Steve Jobs to join Apple. Cook is credited with pulling Apple out of manufacturing by closing factories and warehouses around the world. This helped the company reduce inventory levels and streamline its supply chain.
He is a master of inventory management. In his first few years resellers watched Cook change how Apple ran its business. Inventory on hand, a crucial measure for a company that indicates how fine-tuned its supply is to market demand, went from weeks to sometimes 16 hours, says Kevin Langdon, CEO of Crywolf, an Apple Specialist reseller firm, indicating a far more responsive company.
Cook helped perfect inventory management to the point that Apple, which regularly launches big new products, has few of the older ones left at the end of each cycle. It helps the company avoid the trap of having to significantly discount older products.
Apple's supply chain has been voted No 1 for the 3rd year running in The AMR Supply Chain Top 25 for 2010 (http://www.gartner.com/DisplayDocument?ref=clientFriendlyUrl&id=1379613) outdoing Procter and Gamble, Cisco Systems and Wal-Mart stores
While time will judge whether Tim Cook has the creative genius of Steve Jobs, he sure is a Supply Chain genius.