Supply Chain Innovation Podcast

Welcome to the Supply Chain Innovation podcast, hosted by IndustryStar Founder & CEO, William Crane. In this podcast series we share real-world lessons learned, big ideas, and resources from some of the top industry changemakers and leaders at firms across supply chain, procurement, quality, materials, logistics, product development, engineering, and manufacturing with the hope that you'll learn new strategies, tactics, and tools for optimizing supply chain operations.

Episode 58

Brian Diephuis, CEO at thyssenkrupp Materials North America, joins William to talk about leading the team to grow their supply chain services, the tremendous impact that inventory management has on the overall supply chain, how they help customers better manage inventory and materials flow, and how important organizational culture is to driving both internal and customer success.

Episode 57

Phil Ross, Director of Global Supply Chain Management at automotive Tier I supplier Flex-N-Gate, is joined by William on site in Warren, MI to share his knowledge and advice on supply chain best practices, including the deployment of Kata for continuous improvement, how and why his team uses Plan for Every Part (PFEP), personal traits to look for when building your supply chain team, and some vital tips for launching new products.

Episode 56

Wil Knibloe III, Principal at advisory services firm Crowe, LLP, joins William to discuss the topics of procurement and strategic sourcing, including what type of roles procurement and sourcing play in an organization, leadership methods that consistently maximize results, and which strategic sourcing metrics matter the most.

Episode 55

Alan Shevela, Global Director of Supply Chain at lightweighting solutions and components supplier Aludyne, links up with William to discuss the professional and supply chain skills that are "automation-proof," how to prepare your teams for future changes in strategy, and how having multiple facilities in different geographic regions and countries impacts the company's approach to supply chain and operations.

Episode 54

Samantha Huang, Principal at BMW i Ventures, joins William to share her venture capital perspective on investing in new supply chain innovations, highlighting two examples of optimization solutions developed by startups, her recommendations for companies with new products/technologies looking to move beyond the perpetual pilot cycle, and the factors her team considers when looking to invest in AI or ML applications.

Episode 53

Mark Whitten, President & CEO of Spartanburg Steel Products, joins William as the two dive deep into the significance of organizational culture, including where Mark gets his belief system and leadership style from, specific steps you can take to start leading change on Day 1, strategies to supercharge cultural change and to drive waste out of the supply chain, and why employee engagement has such a profound impact on the customer experience.

Episode 52

Jim Rock, CEO of autonomous material handling robot manufacturer Seegrid, joins William to talk about the process of helping craft and shape the company's core values, how the pandemic accentuated growth opportunities in the material handling and robotics markets, how their three-pronged product-service-software offering helps address the low supply of labor and safety concerns, and what the future trends look like for material handling and flow with autonomous robots.

Episode 51

Tony Milando, SVP & Chief Supply Chain Officer at global water technology provider Xylem, joins William to share how his background in finance and understanding financial metrics has helped him as a leader to drive business performance, the supply chain elements that have helped Xylem strengthen its market position, and where he sees the most opportunity for growth with new technologies and products across the manufacturing and industrial sector.

Episode 50

Mark Bruckman, North American CEO & Managing Director at industrial innovation firm Segula Technologies, joins William to chat about his leadership style and the necessity of being able to work with a variety of people and personalities, some of the unique challenges organizations face when bringing new mobility technologies to market, new product development and digitization macro trends' impacts on collaboration, and successful examples of Industry 4.0 implementation.

Episode 49

Jason Forcier, COO and EVP Infrastructure and Solutions BU at digital infrastructure provider Vertiv, joins William to discuss what data centers really are and where they fit in the telecommunications supply chain, how looking at traditional supply chain strategies in a new light with Lean and Onshoring improves working capital and shortens lead times, his experience and results practicing "Servant Leadership", and how the company is implementing Industry 4.0 into their manufacturing operations.

Episode 48

Ryan Yost, Vice President and General Manager of Printer Solutions at materials science company Avery Dennison, joins William to shed light on the value of giving unique identities to products and putting their "digital twins" in the cloud, how RFID technology increases a product's supply chain visibility, substantially raises inventory accuracy, and improves load optimization, and all of the ways RFIDs can reduce inefficiencies in your operations and processes.

Episode 47

Anoop Balachandran, Business Manager of Bosch Digital & Bosch Connected Industry (Americas) joins William to discuss several Industry 4.0 and IoT topics, including why it's important for machines to be self aware, how using information from connected devices can help eliminate waste from the end-to-end value chain, how capturing data from electronic signatures helps correct or remove improper or undesirable machine behavior/performance, and how digitizing all touchpoints and interactions downstream of partners and customers will maximize your supply chain benefits.

Episode 46

Hear what it's like to develop and launch an all-new electric vehicle as Carolyn and Jim Maury, CEO and President (respectively) of electric vehicle manufacturer Zero Electric Vehicles (ZEV), join William to share their experience building a company and designing a product with an "inclusive" business model, what supply chain and manufacturing practices they use to be able to compete with existing companies and OEMs in the EV space, and where they think the future of the EV 2.0 movement is headed.

Episode 45

Igino Cafiero, CEO of autonomous farming technology company Bear Flag Robotics, joins William to share his experience commercializing a connected ag-tech solution, along with his insights on how partnering with suppliers for low-volume prototype builds saved time and boosted prototype quality, why investing in their supply chain up front will allow them to scale more quickly, and how they plan to achieve their organizational goal to increase global food production while reducing the cost of growing food through autonomous technologies.

Episode 44

Frances Hogsten, VP of Global Supply Chain at furniture manufacturer Haworth, joins William to discuss the evolution of supply chain and how purchasing has shifted from lowest-cost sourcing to considering the total cost of ownership, how to be creative to drive progress with negotiations when you don't have high-volume buying power, why their supply chain and manufacturing operations vary based on geographic markets, and how they partner with other specialists and suppliers to reuse or recycle materials and components to reduce their impact on the environment.

Episode 43

Gio Sordoni, COO of electric commercial truck startup Xos, talks with William about solving some of the pain points surrounding low-cost fleet sustainability for last-mile delivery, including the driving factors for designing a fully electric medium- and heavy-duty truck platform, their transition from service provider to manufacturer, what to consider when deciding between air-cooled and water-cooled battery systems, and the elements they incorporated to help optimize manufacturing and assembly processes.

Episode 42

CJ Rutten, Director of Supplier Quality & Development at off-road and recreational vehicle manufacturer Polaris, joins William to shed light on how supplier quality enables the company to reduce costs and risk across operations, why it's crucial to take the time to understand what your customers value, what positive effects working from home has had on his team's productivity and morale, and several lean and continuous improvements tips that have helped the organization meet its goals and keep their commitment to quality.

Episode 41

Randy Pappal, Vice President of Purchasing, Supply Chain and Business Development at Tier I automotive supplier Shape Corp, joins William to discuss how fostering an organizational culture supporting collaboration and partnering with OEMs/suppliers has benefited customer programs, how supplier performance data and transparency improve purchasing decisions, and why relationships with suppliers matter and are critical during times of crisis.

Episode 40

Eduardo Muñoz, CEO of EVShare and ArqBravo Group, joins William to discuss how the two companies implemented a mobility community in a remote region of South America, how blockchain technology aids transactions and smart contracts for customers and drivers, why partnerships and transparency will create the strongest supply chain for the the future of electric vehicles, and how "augmented efficiency" will make electric vehicles a key piece of infrastructure in future cities.

Episode 39

Engineering veteran Rob Willison, Ph.D., COO of last-mile delivery vehicle manufacturer Workhorse, talks all things electric vehicles with William and sheds light on some of the keys to growing successful long-term customer partnerships, how collaborating with suppliers can multiply innovation, and how to balance improving every day as an organization with creating that "next big thing".

Episode 38

Carl Hung, President & CEO of product development and global contract manufacturer Season Group, joins William to discuss all things IoT, including the current and rising technology challenges with IoT devices, major growth markets, tips for companies that want to launch new IoT products, and tactics for what it takes to build strong organizational cultures.

Episode 37

Bridget Martin, Sr. Sourcing Manager at industrial automation and information company Rockwell Automation, joins William to talk about what the biggest differences are between sourcing in the US and other regions and countries, what opportunities there are for supply chain professionals to drive value for their organizations, what leadership strategies and tactics help global teams produce the most success, and why companies should be reevaluating their entire supply chains right now.

Episode 36

Learn what it takes to grow a business focused on high-performance automotive aftermarket parts as William is joined by Frank LoScrudato, VP Development & Operations at Nostrum Energy. In this podcast episode, Frank shares the struggles and successes that have helped Nostrum get where they are today, some of their biggest lessons learned with eCommerce order fulfillment, and how they plan to keep the momentum going as an early stage company launching new hardware products.

Episode 35

Greg Toornman, VP Global Materials, Logistics, and Freight Management at agricultural equipment manufacturer AGCO, joins William to discuss his team's risk management strategies that enabled them to start preparing for COVID-19 global fallout, challenges they expect to face maintaining operations moving forward, how agility needs to be built into an organization for it to adapt to major market shifts, and where opportunities lie for supply chain professionals to accelerate new product innovation.

Episode 34

What's it like to work on the features and technologies that make it into future production vehicles? Find out as Bindu Sundaram, Innovation Program Manager at Fiat Chrysler, joins William to share what it's like innovating at a large global OEM, why it's essential to include supply chain professionals earlier on during product development, and how trusting your team is the foundation for fostering true collaboration.

Episode 33

Tony Ehrbar, Owner & President of tent and sidewall manufacturer American Tent, joins William to talk about some of his secrets for successfully growing a small business, benefits of outsourcing and using on-demand partners, surrounding yourself with experts who have strengths to make up for your weaknesses, and how clutch it is to go all-in focusing on your core products or services.

Episode 32

Bob Feys, Founder & CEO of golf products startup Putter's Eye, shares his experience developing a golf technology hardware product to solve a major pain point in the sport, why it's so important to align yourself with team members and suppliers who understand your vision and share your passion, and how partnering with a supply chain management firm that knows the entire manufacturing process - what it takes to launch a product from idea to production - will help you save substantial amounts of time and money.

Episode 31

IndustryStar's Founder & CEO, William Crane, and VP of Partnerships & Growth, Jason Brewer, recently hosted a webinar on Supply Chain Risk Management: Gaining Greater Visibility to Thrive in an Increasingly Dynamic World. It received so much positive feedback that we decided to take the audio and condense it into a podcast. In this episode, William covers why supply chain risk management matters and what successful implementation looks like, how black swan events like the COVID-19 pandemic impact the global economy, and what actions proactive leaders can take, along with software tools they can use, to mitigate supply chain disruption.

Episode 30

Grey Parker, Principal, CEO and Director of Engineering at design firm Sundberg-Ferar, discusses with William how implementing Agile during the product development process speeds up product time to market, how involving sourcing professionals earlier helps you find manufacturers who are proactive, open minded, and versatile, and why fostering an environment of openness and encouragement sparks new ideas and innovation.

Episode 29

Jeff Simek, General Manager of design and manufacturing company RCO Engineering, joins William to shed light on how utilization and maintenance will be key to the longevity of commercial autonomous mobility fleets, how aerospace OEMs can learn from the automotive supply chain to bring quality products to market more efficiently, why automotive engineers are being recruited by aerospace firms, and why companies who embrace Industry 4.0 will lead the way launching new technologies.

Episode 28

Brad Hunstable, Founder & CEO of smart electric motor company Linear Labs, chats with William and dives deep into the details of how their business model will make electric vehicles more affordable and mainstream, what procurement professionals should know when sourcing electric motor components, and the massive potential for widespread adoption of electric propulsion systems across several industries.

Episode 26

Bill Hall, Principal at Hall Partners, shares his supply chain sustainability insights with William, including examples of how companies are using new technologies to build sustainability into their products, why transparency is critical to assess risk for environmental issues, human rights issues, and disruptions, and why supply chain executives can't afford not to make sustainability a priority.

Episode 25

Sarah Scudder, President of sourcing software company Real Sourcing Network, joins William to discuss common challenges associated with sourcing print and marketing services, why more companies need to develop strategies and implement oversight for sourcing print, where cost reduction opportunities lie, and how AI will impact the future of competitive bidding.

Episode 24

Matthew Johnson-Roberson, CEO & Co-Founder of autonomous delivery vehicle company Refraction AI, joins William to talk about lessons learned as a hardware startup entrepreneur, the massive transition happening within the automotive industry and its impact on specific supply chains, and why there's more to investors and raising capital than just financial resources.

Episode 23

Jim Cook, CFO of modular mobility startup QUADROBOT, joins William to discuss developing a product based on service and longevity instead of volume, why mobility should be approached with the mindset of improving people's quality of life, and how the mobility market and its supply chains in China differ from those in the US and EU.

Episode 22

Ali Ahmed, Co-Founder & CEO of of self-driving grocery store Robomart, shares with William what it has been like developing a new retail segment in the food & beverage industry, potential use cases for future "store hailing" applications, and why the idea behind Robomart is so important to communities with limited or no access to fresher food items and ingredients.

Episode 21

Daniel Laury, CEO & Chief Product Officer at the autonomous cloud-connected delivery company udelv, joins William to shed light on the significance of the current revolution happening in transportation, advantages of using an existing vehicle platform instead of creating a new one, and how outsourcing specific parts of their supply chain improved program timing and the overall product.

Episode 20

Barbara Plante, Founder & President of Boreal Space, stops by to talk to William about supply chain challenges faced by space hardware startups, tips for people looking to build their first functional prototypes, and how more space infrastructure would benefit future space travel.

Episode 19

Space Entrepreneur and Founder of space propulsion systems company Phase Four, Simon Halpern, chats with William about what it takes to build a team to launch a new hardware product, how to partner with suppliers to enhance your team, and how to ensure that supply chain and manufacturing operations are able to maintain high levels of precision, performance, and quality in the space industry.

Episode 18

Peter Deppe, Founder & CEO of ridesharing and vehicle-to-grid service KUHMUTE, joins William to discuss common challenges faced by startups in the mobility sector, his experience taking a new hardware product to market, and where the future of microbility could be headed.

Episode 17

Erick Stewart, President of Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) services and quality inspection company STEWART Industries LLC, joins William to talk about the business benefits of using FTZ's, examples of success, and how they can be a part of your supply chain risk management strategy in the current volatile trade agreement climate.

Episode 16

Pratt & Miller CGO (Chief Growth Officer), Lynn Bishop, Chats with William about the future of autonomous vehicles, providing key insights on how to overcome cost challenges associated with low-volume emerging markets, and how companies who have a market-driven, "voice of the customer" approach will find success and produce long-term profitability within the broader mobility ecosystem.

Episode 15

Kabir Maiga, Founder & CEO of smart access products and services company Passivebolt, joins William to discuss what leaders of consumer product organizations can do to launch their products on time, tips for engaging large corporate partners, and what will separate the winners and losers in the connected building and smart home spaces.

Episode 14

Pavan Muzumdar, Author of "Venture Perfect" and COO of the nonprofit manufacturing and technology business association Automation Alley, defines "Industry 4.0", discusses how innovators can use smart technology to improve manufacturing operations and explains how to achieve more success by being open to change and developing "learning cultures" within organizations.

Episode 13

Philip Ideson, Managing Director of management consultancy Art of Procurement and host of the top-rated "Art of Procurement" podcast, joins William to discuss proven strategies for sustainable cost saving results, what new technologies and tools will boost sourcing performance, and why scrapping the "vendor" mindset is critical to real innovation.

Episode 12

Automotive legend, Steve Saleen, Founder & CEO of high-performance vehicle OEM Saleen Automotive, joins William to talk about how his racing background and innovative mindset have helped his company pioneer specialized vehicle manufacturing and mass customization, and why supply partners play such a critical role during new product development to slash production lead times.

Episode 11

Charlie Rupert, CEO of tier I automotive lighting and vision systems supplier Singh Vision Systems, joins William to talk about the major role lighting plays in the automotive industry, why it's crucial to use a systems thinking approach when developing manufacturing solutions, and how important the future of optics technology will be for autonomous vehicles.

Episode 10

Learn how autonomous technology will affect last mile delivery when Shadi Mere, Founder & CEO of electric autonomous robotics delivery startup Bedestrian, chats with William about mobility and its impact on the future of health care, as well as Bedestrian's lessons learned taking their product from idea to prototype and the value supply partners can bring to small teams.

Episode 09

Omar Siada, manufacturing specialist and Plant Manager of electric autonomous shuttle startup Navya, talks to William about key elements of leading a new low-volume manufacturing operation, the impact documentation and information sharing have on plant readiness and product time to market, and how the future of the mobility market is tied to the evolution of the automotive industry.

Episode 08

William is joined by Nolan Orfield, Co-founder & CSO of strength tracker startup ShapeLog, who shares his knowledge and experience with successfully innovating in the IoT hardware space, and highlights why it's so important for connected-product startups to focus on hiring the right team members, and to get their products in front of customers earlier for quicker market validation.

Episode 07

Nezar Akeel, Founder & CEO of personal fitness startup MaxFit, discusses with William the obstacles entrepreneurs will face launching a new hardware product and offers valuable advice about setting cost and timeline expectations, partnering with experts and suppliers, and maintaining their vision for the product, even when the journey gets tough.

Episode 06

Steve Polakowski, President of ESG Automotive Inc., joins William to talk about the current and future states of the mobility space, and how collaboration between electrical and electronics engineering and supply chain teams will improve and accelerate the launch of new mobility technologies and vehicles.

Episode 05

Product design and development specialist James Utley, Principal at Dialexa, sheds light on the significance of Design Thinking and involving supply chain team members for a more holistic approach when creating a new product that accurately addresses customers' needs and challenges.

Episode 04

Supply chain expert Sarah Barnes-Humphrey, host of the "Let's Talk Supply Chain" podcast and one of the Top-100 Influential Women in Canadian Supply Chain, provides her insight on the benefits of involving logistics earlier in new product development, not only to reduce costs and timing, but also to improve cross-functional collaboration and workflows.

Episode 03

Sustainability expert Stuart L. Hart, founder of Enterprise for a Sustainable World, talks to William about what companies can do to make existing supply chains more sustainable, and what to prioritize when developing new products.

Episode 02

Matt Forster, Co-Founder & VP Operations at IndustryStar, moderates a Q&A session with William, discussing Supply Chain's role in new product development and the importance of infusing supply chain intelligence early on during the process to reduce product time to market, cost, and risk.

Episode 01

William discusses getting specific with your data when creating a Plan for Every Part with Tony Lancione, Co-Founder & VP Supply Chain Solutions at IndustryStar.

Episode 00

Supply Chain Innovation host William Crane gives a brief overview of what to expect from the new IndustryStar podcast series Supply Chain Innovation.