Time-based competition in an 'on demand' world
George Stalk, an American consultant from the Boston Consulting Group, heralded the transition from cost- and price-based competition to time-based competition more than ten years ago. In doing so, he summarized a much needed development: a company's success is increasingly dependent on its ability to react to customer wishes right away. At the same time, the accelerated and widespread development of new technologies is leading to a decrease in service life and production life - the period in which technologies and products can be successfully leveraged in the business world.
A much-quoted and very dramatic example of this is Moore's Law on development in the micro-electronics industry: performance is doubled and the price of this performance halved for each new generation of processors. This means that generations of microchips are being rendered obsolete in ever shorter intervals, along with the PCs and countless other products based on them.
Speed to market more important than cheap pricesParticularly in sectors covering PCs, mobile phones and fashion but also, to a lesser degree, in other sectors, this means that truly successful companies do not offer the most economical price in their market. Instead, they are the first to introduce a new technology or product to this market - in other words, they are first and fastest to react to their customers' needs.
And this is precisely why the concepts and "technologies" of modern logistics can play a key role in enabling companies to increase the speed of their product development, order processing and responses (often summarized as agility) in value chains.
As experts in the architecture of intelligent, modular supply chains and the management and mobilization of such chains, a new and important area is opening up for logistics experts.
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