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The APICS Portland Chapter gives its region’s supply chain pros a leg up through education and certification. By Chris Petersen

The way most companies think about their supply chains has changed dramatically over the last few decades. In the past, supply chain was considered just another element of operations, but today companies like Amazon have demonstrated that supply chain can be a significant competitive advantage, and many companies have put their supply chains under the microscope to find ways they can be improved, streamlined and overhauled into an engine that keeps their operations running smoothly.

In this new environment, it has become more important than ever that companies have supply chain professionals on staff who are knowledgeable, skilled and effective. For more than 50 years, APICS has been helping supply chain professionals achieve the certifications and gain the education they need to be the best at their jobs, and the organization’s Portland, Ore., chapter is leading the way in the Pacific Northwest.

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ValuePoint Material Solutions can help customers improve material programs and better focus on their core competencies.
By Eric Slack

Founded in 1998 in Flint, Mich., ValuePoint Material Solutions came into being based on a market need for an independent indirect material service provider not owned by or affiliated with a distributor. Today, the company has more than 6,000 active distributor and manufacturer relationships in every indirect material category. These relationships range from simple procurement only arrangements all the way to service-oriented commodity management partnerships in support of customers.

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Technology services firm Tribridge assists its clients in choosing the best solutions that support their unique business needs.
By Jim Harris

Companies have no shortage of options when it comes to available technology. However, while there may be a number of products on the market that seem to fit the bill in a broad sense, finding a solution that fits a company’s specific business needs can be challenging. More manufacturers, distributors and retailers are looking to enterprise resource planning (ERP), consumer relationship management (CRM) and cloud-based storage options to help them address the challenges of doing business in today’s economy.

Since 1998, Tribridge has provided visionary leadership and technologies to help make their customers’ operations streamlined through the optimization of supply chain visibility and best-in-class manufacturing and distribution process and procedures. The company’s value add is its years of consulting in functional areas including business and technology, customer engagement, finance and operations, business intelligence and analytics and human capital management.

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Leading technology and a global footprint are why Fulfillment.com is a top e-commerce fulfillment service provider.
By Eric Slack

Less than a decade old, Fulfillment.com (FDC) has quickly become a leading provider of e-commerce fulfillment services to independent product marketers worldwide. In fact, the company’s astonishing three-year growth rate during the period 2012-2014 of more than 35,000 percent places FDC as America’s second-fastest-growing private company, according to Inc. Magazine

In changing the nature of its relationship with steel mills and distributors, Whiting Petroleum has improved how it procures steel pipe casing and eliminated inventory costs while streamlining the supply chain. “Being able to acquire [pipe casing] in the simplest, most consistent manner at a very competitive price is real beneficial to an end-user such as Whiting,” says Materials Manager Ross Weaver, the man behind the company’s fundamental supply chain shift. Oil producers have utilized distributor stocking programs for years. Whiting was growing fast enough to justify changing the procurement process.

Whiting is an independent oil and gas company that explores, acquires and develops land for crude oil, natural gas and liquid natural gas. The company operates mainly in North Dakota’s Bakken Shale and northern Colorado, where it runs drilling rigs on leased land. It’s proved reserves were 780 million barrels of oil equivalent (Mmboe) at the end of 2014 – a 78 percent increase over 2013 – and it produced 167,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (BOE/D) in first-quarter 2015.

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