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Closing the execution gap

An interview with former Chevron President, Ray Wilcox

As the petrochemical industry adapts to the current business environment, many in the upper echelons of the business are relying on operational excellence (OE) strategies to become more efficient.

Three important aspects of project prioritization

Faced with the constant threat of rising costs and low margins, executives are doing everything they can to survive. Initiatives that reduce costs, maintain cash flow and eliminate debt are now focal points for companies trying to cope with the current market. In many cases, CEOs are under serious pressure to deliver targeted benefits in a relatively short amount of time.

A closer look at the consumer packaged goods industry

The perception of the unique challenges faced by the consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry varies across the different continents we surveyed for our recent index. However, high costs and low margins ranked the highest among our global constituents. The following infographic ranks the top two issues by region according to the companies we surveyed in North America, Europe, Asia, South America and Africa.

The importance of developing a cash management culture

After years of working capital deterioration, companies are beginning to understand the importance of working capital as it relates to sustaining day-to-day operations and stimulating growth. According to PwC's 2015 Annual Global Working Capital Survey, last year was the first significant decrease in global working capital in four years, with a 2.9% year‑on‑year improvement. This trend is also linked to an 11.3% spike in the level of cash held by companies -- the highest surplus of readily avialable funds in five years.

Four areas where procurement improvement initiatives are essential

Unfortunately, we are seeing far less procurement initiatives that target efficiency and effectiveness in the field despite the ongoing promise of great rewards from companies that offer related products and services. The C-level executives we spoke to recently were very forthcoming about a general lack of progress due to ineffective responses to strategic problems and opportunities.

Lost time a real problem according to Proudfoot Advisory Board

The issue of poor time management does not discriminate – affecting all industries and facets of a business. It can be a real eye-opener for executives when examined from a cost perspective, but it also presents a tremendous opportunity for improvement.

Six steps to address a skills shortage

One of the most significant challenges facing many businesses today is the dire shortage of highly skilled workers. These shortages are reaching such alarming levels that business leaders and economic pundits believe the mismatch of supply and demand could hinder economic recovery. However, the following six steps have the potential to mitigate the effects of a skills shortage without increasing costs.

Seven supply chain tips to improve working capital

 

In her second installment on supply chain performance, Alexander Proudfoot Global Supply Chain Lead, Jaymie Forrest focuses on seven ways to improve working capital. They are as follows:

Ray Wilcox headlines recent oil and gas summit

Recently, former President & CEO of Chevron Phillips Chemical, former President of Chevron NA Exploration & Production and current Alexander Proudfoot Advisory Board member, Ray Wilcox had the opportunity to speak at this year’s Operational Excellence in Oil and Gas Summit held in Calgary. His keynote speech “Bridging the Execution Gap” was well received by the many oil and gas executives that were in attendance.

Behind every winning team is a great coach

Managers and supervisors that are too wrapped up with administrative tasks are neglecting valuable opportunities to coach and mentor employees. However, our findings show that people delegated to positions of authority often do not have the skills necessary to be competent leaders in the first place.

Bridging the execution gap

In a recent interview with several c-level executives, we had the opportunity to discuss how to bridge the gap that often exists between a company’s best demonstrated performance and its true potential.

Adding value to ERP systems

An Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system impacts every facet of a business -- from accounting and finance to sales and marketing. There is not apersonor process that does not feel the effects of a newly installed ERP system.

Lending a helping hand to the community

On April 17, Alexander Proudfoot set out to lend a helping hand in the community. In conjunction with the United Way, the team spent the day at Senior Connections – a resource center for senior citizens.

Leaders in supply chain improvement. [infographic]

Supply chain improvements can generate up to 3.5% savings in total operating costs. Currently, many business leaders are focusing on major initiatives to improve theirs. We took a deeper look to evaluate the main trends on this topic. See the results in this infographic.

 

 

Five levels of energy cost management

Energy can be a huge source of savings, or a financial burden depending on how a business is run. There are many variables that determine how energy efficient an organization can be. Is there an energy policy in place? Is energy use and planning discussed in meetings? What percentage of the operating budget is energy? These are all questions executives can use to self-evaluate their organization.

Effective maintenance drives cost reduction

Key to any mining operation, the maintenance function is what sustains a high level of productivity. Without it, trucks would break down and machinery would fail – potentially costing a company millions in repairs and lost productivity. By the same token, a poorly managed maintenance program can have the same expensive consequences. 

10 ways to
spark productivity

In several of our recent engagements we have witnessed first-hand the enormous amount of pressure on CEOs to meet the stringent demands of both stakeholders and customers. One such demand that continues to be a top priority for executives is employee productivity. Our experience tells us that a decline in workforce performance and efficiency can put a major dent in an organization’s bottom line.

CEOs orchestrating
executive alignment

CEOs from around the globe recently touched on how important it is for senior executives to be able to predict a future state that not only rewards investors, but also lays the foundation for a strong customer base. The decision to move in any given direction should be unanimous. Otherwise, the chances of successfully driving necessary change initiatives are greatly diminished.