Feb 17, 2021

SCApath and T-Mobile: Omni-Channel Supply Chain Capability

T-Mobile
SCApath
digital supply chain
5G
Dominic Ellis
3 min
SCApath and T-Mobile: Omni-Channel Supply Chain Capability
SCApath President and Managing Principal, explains how it is growing T-Mobile’s digital supply chain platform and supporting its 5G network expansion...

“There has never been a better time to be in supply chain technology. We have gone from the small print back pages to the front page of the Wall Street Journal. The industry is being driven by mobile, global, cloud, and continued acceleration in digital and e-commerce. 

We’ve been T-Mobile’s supply chain consulting partner for the last four years, working across multiple supply chain initiatives. The most well-known are the T-Mobile Sprint merger, and T-Mobile 5G network, which is extremely important to the development of IoT and really the supply chain of the future. 

Our team of supply chain experts have worked hard to deliver a seamless customer experience, so you can go into a T-Mobile store and buy or return Sprint inventory, and vice versa. We’ve also deployed a highly automated multi-channel distribution center solution for all US mobile devices and accessory fulfilment. We’re modernizing their 5G supply chain to drive their network nationwide.   

When I think about our continued partnership with T-Mobile, it’s really about two key strategic elements: supporting their business as they move to a fully digital supply chain platform – from customer experience and enterprise architecture perspectives – and developing their 5G network supply chain. It’s a perfect example of SCApath’s cross-discipline supply chain expertise, and value of bringing order management, fulfilment and transportation together. 

The IoT, enabled by 5G, will allow more real time track and trace, and increased visibility from the manufacturer to the end customer, enabling more agility than ever before. So, T-Mobile, indirectly, is going to be instrumental in supply chain innovation that we’re going to see in the next five to 10 years. 

There are three important trends which have accelerated during the pandemic, and we think they will continue: 1) pent-up customer demand caused by purchase postponement and emphasis on experiencing the ‘now’; 2) the accelerated shift to e-commerce; and 3) consumer goods’ companies building direct channels rather than selling through traditional retailers.

In today’s complex supply chain and technology environment, you must understand the trade-offs between speed, cost, quality and agility. It’s critical you understand those relationships to deliver an omni-channel supply chain capability – there are many interacting variables. We also need warehouse management systems that fill orders across many channels – which requires investment not only in warehouse management software, but also in advanced automation and robotics to fill orders reliably, at high volumes and during peak periods.

Companies have to look at existing distribution centers and re-tool them for higher volumes of e-commerce. In addition, BOPIS (Buy Online Pickup In Store) and curbside pickup have gone from nice-to-haves to must-haves, and critical to consumer goods’ strategies.

The ability to tie together supply chain operations and technology is not only what makes SCApath different but it’s also a necessity for future commerce – and that’s the reason why we’re so bullish and excited about the future.” 


 

Share article

May 14, 2021

Dark Wolf: accelerating security for USAF

U.S Air Force
Dark Wolf Solutions
Paddy Smith
2 min
Dark Wolf Solutions is small and agile, its partnership with the US Air Force is helping to deliver critical security faster and better than ever before

As a small company whose biggest customers are the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community, Dark Wolf Solutions (Dark Wolf) is a triple-threat, specializing in Cybersecurity, Software and DevOps, and Management Solutions. Dark Wolf secures and tests cloud platforms, develops and deploys applications, and offers consultancy services performing system engineering, system integration, and mission support.

The break for Dark Wolf came when the Department of Defense decided to explore software factories. Rick Tossavainen, Dark Wolf’s CEO, thinks it was an inspired path for the DoD to take. “It was a really great decision,” he says, “Let’s pull our people together as part of this digital transformation and recreate what Silicon Valley startup firms typically have. Let’s get into commercial facilities where we have open windows and big whiteboards and just promote ideation and collaboration. And it creates this collaborative environment where people start creating things much more rapidly than before.”

It has been, Tossavainen says, “amazing to watch” and has energized the Federal Contracting Sector with an influx of new talent and improved working environments that foster creativity and innovative ways of approaching traditional problems.

“We originally started working with the US Air Force about three years ago. The problem was at the time you could develop all the software you wanted but you couldn’t get it into production – you had to go through the traditional assessment and authorization process. I talked to Lauren Knausenberger and she told me about Kessel Run and what eventually came out of this was the DoD’s first continuous ATO [Authority To Operate].”

The secret to Dark Wolf’s success – and its partnerships with USAF and Space Force – lies in a client-first attitude. “We’re not looking to maximise revenue,” Tossavainen explains. “We tell all of our employees, if you’re ever faced with an issue and you don’t know how to resolve it, and one solution is better for the customer and the second is better for Dark Wolf, you always do number one. We’ve just got to take care of our customers, and I look for other partners that want to do that. And let’s work together so that we can bring them the best answer we can.”

Rapid releases and constant evolution of software are common themes among USAF’s partners. Like many firms operating in the commercial and public sector spaces, Dark Wolf leads with a DevSecOps approach.

“Failure is tolerated,” says Tossavainen. “If it’s not going the right way in three months, let’s adjust. Let’s rapidly change course. And you can tell really quickly if something’s going to be successful or not, because they’re doing deployments multiple times a day – to the customer.”

Share article