Complexity is our Strength

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Chemicals

Complexity is our Strength

“Agility is one key pillar of our 2020+ strategic priorities. In a highly volatile and dynamic business environment, increasing the agility of the organization will be a critical success factor for Henkel in the future. This will include energized and empowered teams, fastest time-to-market as well as smart and simplified processes,” remarks Sandeep Baxla, Head Supply Chain – India sub-continent, Henkel Adhesives Technologies, during an interaction.

You have close to two decades’ experience in supply chain network planning & implementation. How do you think the scenario has evolved over the years?

Sandeep Baxla, Henkel 

The supply chain terminology was nonexistent at the time I graduated from XLRI in operations. The nearest relative terminology was distribution. If we trace the history, the supply chain concept evolved at the end of 1997. I have been in the industry for almost 23 years and the transformation has been phenomenal, and more so, in the recent years, the dynamics have metamorphosed drastically. Supply chain was never considered core of the organization earlier. To tell you honestly, our team also used to consist of people who were not suited for any other department be it sales or operations. People were forcibly given the task of managing logistics & planning and no one really was keen to take up job 20 years ago. Even the top management used to think that it’s just about moving products from point A to B.

As competition picked up and the country saw the wave of liberalization, companies started realizing the crucial importance of supply chain. Now-a-days, the entire supply chain is carved out as an independent vertical, which earlier used to be a part of sales with haphazard reporting structure. It has today become a focal point in enabling businesses to achieve their strategic goal. In true sense, supply chain has seen a tremendous transformation in the recent years. It is not looked as a cost centre but a value addition for the entire value chain. Without supply chain, I think many CEOs would be handicapped.

How is the adhesives & coatings market shaping up in the country?