Extracted 25JUL2011 from http://logisticsviewpoints.com/2011/07/25/a-new-form-of-supply-chain-collabor...
When most people think of R&D, they think of product design. There are other industries, however, where designing the manufacturing facility is tantamount to designing the product. You don’t design oil, for example, you design the oil refinery to process the oil. Oil & Gas, Chemicals, and Utilities are all examples of industries where facility design trumps product design. The collaborative platform tools used in those industries are Process Engineering Tools.
ARC recently completed a study on this market and one of the authors, Tom Fiske, spoke at our recent company meeting about a growing type of collaboration occurring in this area. “Now instead of designing a facility and then building it, companies get the design to a certain level of completion and then start building.” As the design proceeds further, more work on the building can be done. This more collaborative process, rather than the traditional sequential one, can shave months off the opening of a large, complex facility.
Cross-functional and cross-enterprise collaboration will remain at the core of supply chain management, and these concepts increasingly encompass a broader value network than what we have traditionally called “the supply chain.” And with the Internet, mobility, and advanced enterprise cloud applications continuing to march forward, we will continue to see new forms of collaboration.