Impact of Social Networking in the Supply Chain Management Process

Sarah    November 17, 2013


Should the use of social networking platforms be implemented in the supply chain process?

 Bill DuBois’ blog post ‘Is Your Supply Chain Glass Half Full?

“Project manager – I know you want to add cranberry juice to your martini glass, but I’ll need to write a change request for that. Potential customer – I’ll order that drink if I can talk to 3 other customers who’ll tell me how good it is Supply chain consultant– Tell me about your requirements for filling that glass, and I’ll transform your glass-filling process! Research analysts/Thought leaders – You’re at stage 4 of the maturity curve when you can segment all the glasses by fullness (or emptiness), sense how full each glass is with your eyes closed, and collaborate with the bartender to get a refill in real-time.”

 Social networking goes beyond Facebook, Linked-in and Twitter. It includes all leading software vendors that companies currently use to manage their processes. It is not only for socializing with friends and family but about facilitating one on one personalized communication and collaboration which is at the heart of effectively managing and executing the supply chain processes.

The value of open communication and connectivity is of utmost importance. We now have the ability to always be in the know at any given time about the process along the supply chain. The new social media platforms have allowed companies and consumers to participate in real-time connections. This is unprecedented from the traditional methods of phone/fax/email communication which was slow in recording/attaining the financial and operational repercussions and thus providing a course of action.

scm logoscm cust

 The company Supply Chain Management – SCM has grown to be one of the largest 3PL supply chain organizations in Canada operating several large state-of-the-art distribution center’s for one of the world’s largest and most successful retailers. They have embraced the social media platforms to share information and work with each other to ensure ‘just in time’ delivery of their products and services which results in better business performance. As a result they have been fortunate enough to expand globally as social media allows for a no boundaries approach across the world.

Some of the many benefits that can be achieved by any company are lower costs, shorter order lead time, and greater flexibility to respond in terms of supply and demand. Ultimate transparency which allows for open communication throughout all aspects of the supply chain processes. This creates a stronger more trustworthy relationship allowing for a more in-depth experience resulting in an all-around better more efficient and cost effective supply chain.

Lessons for others:

  • Social Media platforms have now become a vital part of the supply chain management process and breaks down all boundaries and boarders.

Web References:

Is Your Supply Chain Glass Half Full?
Supply Chain Management
SCM About

Submitted by: Sarah Kalyan – SMBP Student University of Waterloo. To contact the author of this entry please email

If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Program Director, Social Media for Business Performance.