COLLABORATION WITH SUPPLIERS and customers is the fourth step along the pathway to building a strategy to deliver supply chain excellence. Senior executives and their supply chain staffs should pay special attention to the best practices for collaboration outlined in this chapter to ensure success. Unfortunately, as one executive sadly told us when describing the failed efforts in his firm, “When all was said and done, there was far more said than done.” His firm made some fundamental mistakes in its collaboration initiatives. But other companies have shown that success is possible. Through examples, we show how the hard work of collaboration can produce outstanding results.
What Is External Collaboration?