Industry-Focused White Papers

The Global Supply Chain Institute’s white papers, written and researched by the University of Tennessee’s globally ranked faculty, explore supply chain trends and challenges and discuss innovative approaches to supply chain management to reveal today’s best practices. Research from these white papers has appeared in leading business and industry publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Harvard Business Review, Supply Chain Management Review and DC Logistics.

gsci white paper

Modern Day Best Practices from Supply Chain Leaders

Winning Supply Chain Transformational Leadership Practices

April, 2022
The COVID-19 pandemic brought unprecedented supply chain disruptions. But with these disruptions came increased recognition of the value provided by supply chain leaders, supply chain agility, and evolving supply chain best practices. This white paper and video illustrate what leading organizations are doing to succeed among new challenges, increased competition, and ever-changing dynamics. Inside are relevant supply chain best practices from top supply chain leaders, pulled from research and in-depth interviews with five global supply chain experts who have demonstrated transformational leadership in their industries and organizations.
Understanding and Valuing the Impact of Agility in Your Supply Chain Cover

How Investing in Supply Chain Agility Pays Off

Understanding and Valuing the Impact of Agility in Your Supply Chain

March, 2022
Everyone remembers the extreme toilet paper shortages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Even today, shortages of new vehicles, supplies for home renovations, or baby formula are explained away as supply chain issues. Frustrating and all too common, these supply chain issues affect consumers and companies alike. So how can organizations and supply chain leaders nimbly navigate these disruptions? This white paper has the answer.
White Paper Cover: Unlocking Value Through Sustainable Procurement

A Framework for Sustainable Procurement and Supply Chain Management

Unlocking Value Through Sustainable Procurement

October, 2021
Over the years, corporate sustainability has become increasingly important. In addition to being a competitive necessity due to rising consumer demand, corporate sustainability can be a valuable recruitment tool for talent-seeking, purpose-driven corporate cultures, as well as a business practice that boosts innovation and reduces costs. But how can companies achieve sustainability when synchronization and collaboration across the supply chain can be so difficult? This white paper provides a seven-pillar framework for sustainable procurement and supply chain management and guidance on how procurement executives can be successful, in-house sustainability catalysts.
White Paper Cover: When Is(n't) Blockchain Right?

Blockchain 101: Evaluating ROI and Blockchain for Supply Chain

When Isn’t Blockchain Right? A Decision Guide for Supply Chain Professionals

April, 2021
Blockchain has become an industry buzzword, with blockchain for supply chain touted as a game-changer for business operations. Estimates suggest blockchain technology will generate over $3.1 trillion in new business by 2030. But, if the mention of blockchain leaves you scratching your head (or your colleagues rolling their eyes), you’re not alone. Challenging enough to understand its own, Blockchain ROI is even harder to determine. This white paper explains blockchain 101 technology, its potential ROI, and the costs and benefits of application. Authors also present lessons from blockchain pioneers, like Amazon, Mondelez International, and Pfizer. Provided with the paper is a toolkit for effectively determining if blockchain for supply chain is feasible for your company.
White Paper Cover: Advancing E2E Agile Resiliency in Supply Chains

Supply Chain Design: Achieve Resiliency with End to End Supply Chain Agility

Advancing E2E Agile Resiliency in Supply Chains

January, 2021
Supply chain leaders have been through the wringer in recent years. While it’s easy to blame recent supply chain issues on COVID-19, experts warn that risks, uncertainties and supply chain disruptions will continue to challenge economies, marketplaces, and consumers alike. It’s never been more important to 1) evaluate how vulnerable your organization is to supply chain disruptions, and 2) add end to end supply chain considerations and agile resiliency capabilities into your supply chain design. This white paper offers practical “how-to” guidance for advancing and modernizing your approach.
White Paper Cover: Future Trends Shaping Transportation

Transportation in Supply Chain Management

"Future Trends Shaping Transportation”

November, 2020
Transportation is the chief agent of motion in global supply chains. Ensuring continuous connectivity and visibility into where products are once they’ve shipped (i.e., end-to-end supply chain visibility) is a great challenge highlighted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This white paper explores best practices, challenges, and predictions for transportation in supply chain management, as well as solutions for supply chain leaders when it comes to evolving transportation industry trends.
White Paper Cover: End-to-End Supply Chain Synchronization: Orchestrating a Winning Strategy

End to End Supply Chain Synchronization: Building a Winning Strategy

End to End Supply Chain Synchronization: Orchestrating a Winning Strategy

April, 2020
Successfully executed end to end supply chain strategies drive value by verifying that all supply chain activities, processes, and transitions are synchronized to the core business driver of the benchmark company. Everyone in the organization is on the same page, with supply chain leaders acting as orchestra conductors. However, successful implementation of end to end supply chain synchronization requires several elements for readiness. First and foremost of these is 100% commitment from business leadership. Download this white paper to explore what else you’ll need to build your winning strategy. Includes a toolkit, case study, best practices, benchmarking data, and more.
White Paper Cover: EPIC Global Supply Chain Risk Assessment

EPIC Supply Chain Framework: A Global Risk Assessment & Readiness Resource

EPIC Global Supply Chain Risk Assessment

April, 2020
In an increasingly unpredictable world, business leaders can better assess risk by using the EPIC Report and associated EPIC Supply Chain Framework, which measures supply chain readiness from four perspectives: Economy (E), Politics (P), Infrastructure (I), and Competence (C). The authors of this white paper evaluated 64 countries from 10 geographic regions, with a particular focus on how supply chain leaders can manage risk and plan, prepare, and measure supply chain capabilities both globally and for their organizations. This report is must-read information for today’s supply chain decision-makers.
White Paper Covers: Managing Cyber Risks in Global Supply Chains: The Four Fundamentals

Supply Chain Risk Management: Cyber Risks in Global Supply Chains

"Managing Cyber Risks in Global Supply Chains: The Four Fundamentals”

April, 2020
Managing cyber risks within global supply chains is one of the top challenges facing today’s supply chain managers. Yet a key insight from interviews conducted with more than 30 cyber experts for this white paper was that most supply chain leaders do not have a clear understanding of how to reduce risk. Industry leaders have clear cybersecurity strategies and build cybersecurity-centric cultures. If your company needs to shift to a solid supply chain risk management strategy, this white paper is for you.
White Paper Cover: Young Professional Women’s Perspectives on Supply Chain Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and Inclusion in Supply Chain Management: How to Support Women in the Workplace

"Young Professional Women’s Perspectives on Supply Chain Diversity and Inclusion”

November, 2019
More than ever before, supply chain management is center stage. The increased scrutiny and complexities of global supply chains highlights the need for organizations to onboard, develop, and maintain fantastic talent. Research shows that companies with more diverse management teams have 19% higher revenue due to innovation. Yet only 15% of supply chain organizations are led by female executives. This white paper shares the experiences of new female supply chain professionals to illustrate opportunities for supporting women in the workplace. It also provides a framework for building more gender-equitable workplaces.
White Paper Cover: High Performance Organization (HPO) Best Practices: People are the Heart of the Supply Chain

High Performance Organization (HPO) Best Practices: People are the Heart of the Supply Chain

November, 2019
What will it take for businesses to perform at a high level in the supply chain and hold a competitive advantage over their rivals in the next decade? High performance organizations (HPOs) align their values with their business and cultural objectives, and their leaders ensure they keep that alignment by adhering to best practices. Those […]
White Paper Cover: End-to-End Supply Chain Planning Framework and Key Concepts: Why Planning is the “Brains” of the Supply Chain

End-to-End Supply Chain Planning Framework and Key Concepts: Why Planning is the “Brains” of the Supply Chain

April, 2019
In a world of increasingly complex supply chains, companies must learn to adhere to detailed planning that integrates supply and demand plans at strategic and tactical levels. This study advocates for the central role of planning in global supply chains.
White Paper Cover: Driving Shareholder Value with Your Supply Chain Insights to Help Unlock Value across Your Supply Chain for Competitive Advantage

Driving Shareholder Value with Your Supply Chain: Insights to Help Unlock Value across Your Supply Chain for Competitive Advantage

April, 2019
While supply chains are increasingly recognized as vital to corporate finance and risk mitigation, not all supply chain managers yet understand the need to be total business leaders and provide growth solutions. The institute’s new white paper aims to mitigate the issue.
White Paper Cover: Supply Chain Integration Strategy Best Practices: Redefining the Value Derived from End-to-End, Integrated Supply Chains

Supply Chain Best Practices: A Guide to Evaluating & Improving Your End-To-End Supply Chain Integration Strategy

Supply Chain Integration Strategy Best Practices: Redefining the Value Derived from End-to-End, Integrated Supply Chains

November, 2018
When supply chain best practices are in place, end-to-end supply chain integration strategies greatly benefit companies. Integrated supply chain structures create a common strategy, vision, and culture focused on increased value and improved performance. Despite the benefits of an end to end supply chain integration strategy, some supply chain leaders have yet to adopt this strategy and the supply chain best practices that come with it. And, even if they are, there remain ways to expand and further optimize their approach. Authors of this white paper interviewed people from inside 16 leading companies across eight industries to answer those exact questions. They also provide helpful definitions and concepts, integration benefits, supply chain best practices, an integration toolkit, case study, and answer six key questions supply chain leaders should be asking themselves.
White Paper Cover: End-to-End Supply Chain Collaboration Best Practices: Creating Supply Chain Value by Working Together

End-to-End Supply Chain Collaboration Best Practices: Creating Supply Chain Value by Working Together

May, 2018
Sponsored by Maine Pointe. Revised June 2018 with updated research from the Vested program.
White Paper Cover: Advanced Demand/Supply Integration (DSI) Best Practices: Why S&OP Has Largely Not Been Effective in Last Four Decades

Advanced Demand/Supply Integration (DSI) Best Practices: Why S&OP Has Largely Not Been Effective in Last Four Decades

April, 2018
Sponsored by HAVI – A Report by the Supply Chain Management Faculty at the University of Tennessee
White Paper Cover: A Savvy Guide to the Digital Supply Chain: How to Evaluate and Leverage Technology to Build a Supply Chain for the Digital Age

A Savvy Guide to the Digital Supply Chain: How to Evaluate and Leverage Technology to Build a Supply Chain for the Digital Age

April, 2018
Sponsored by IBM – A Report by the Supply Chain Management Faculty at the University of Tennessee.
White Paper Cover: New Product Initiative Best Practices: Driving Incremental Value through Proactive Supply Chain Involvement

New Product Initiative Best Practices: Driving Incremental Value through Proactive Supply Chain Involvement

October, 2017
Driving incremental value through proactive supply chain involvement. Sponsored by Bush Brothers and Company.
White Paper Cover: New Supply Chain Technology Best Practices: The Application of New Technology in the Physical Supply Chain

New Supply Chain Technology Best Practices: The Application of New Technology in the Physical Supply Chain

April, 2017
The application of new technology in the physical supply chain. Sponsored by Kenco Logistics and JDA.
White Paper Cover: Creating a Transparent Supply Chain Best Practices: How to Enhance a Sustainable Supply Chain Efforts through Transparency

Creating a Transparent Supply Chain Best Practices: How to Enhance a Sustainable Supply Chain Efforts through Transparency

November, 2016
How to Enhance Sustainable Supply Chain Efforts Through Transparency
White Paper Cover: Selecting and Managing a Third-Party Logistics Provider: Best Practices

Selecting and Managing a Third-Party Logistics Provider: Best Practices

January, 2016
Sponsored by KENCO Logistics
White Paper Cover: Platform Life Cycle Management Best Practices: Building Profits through Simplification, Standardization, Speed, and Scale

Platform Life Cycle Management Best Practices: Building Profits through Simplification, Standardization, Speed, and Scale

December, 2015
Sponsored by Mondelēz International
White Paper Cover: Transportation 2025 MegaTrends and Current Best Practices: Navigating in a Digital Economy

Transportation 2025 MegaTrends and Current Best Practices: Navigating in a Digital Economy

April, 2015
Sponsored by Proctor & Gamble.
White Paper Cover: Supply Chain Talent: Our Most Important Resource

Supply Chain Talent: Our Most Important Resource

April, 2015
Sponsored by Ryder – A Report by the Supply Chain Management Faculty at the University of Tennessee
White Paper Cover: The ABCs of DCs - Distribution Center Management: A Best Practices Overview

The ABCs of DCs – Distribution Center Management: A Best Practices Overview

February, 2015
Sponsored by Kenco – A Report by the Supply Chain Management Faculty at the University of Tennessee
White Paper Cover: Global Supply Chains

Global Supply Chains

November, 2014
Sponsored by BT Global – A Report by the Supply Chain Management Faculty at the University of Tennessee
White Paper Cover: Managing Risk in the Global Supply Chain

Managing Risk in the Global Supply Chain

April, 2014
Sponsored by UPS Capital – A Report by the Supply Chain Management Faculty at the University of Tennessee
White Paper Cover: Bending the Chain: The Surprising Challenge of Integrating Purchasing and Logistics

Bending the Chain: The Surprising Challenge of Integrating Purchasing and Logistics

April, 2014
Sponsored by IBM
White Paper Cover: Game-Changing Trends in Supply Chain

Game-Changing Trends in Supply Chain

April, 2013
Annual report