Each month, Tony Uphoff, visionary CEO of Thomasnet.com, joins Cloud Wars Live for a recurring segment. “Uphoff on Industry” will explore the innovations, upheavals, and breakthroughs reshaping the the world of manufacturing and industrial markets. Join Tony and me as we discuss disruptive new trends in the digital-industrial world. These include how we design, source and manufacture products. And also the new ways in which industrial companies are getting up to speed on marketing, sales and customer experience.
In this episode: Tony and I begin by talking about his relatively new podcast series, which is available at the Thomas Industry Update and on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, etc. Karen Norheim, president and COO of American Crane & Equipment Corporation, appeared on Episode 3. Tony says she is doing some really innovative things.
Next, Tony walks us through some of the factors behind the recent surge in U.S. manufacturing. One of those factors is tariffs. Tony says that we can’t predict the impact of quixotic tariff talks – we don’t know what’s going to happen. But, he suggests, companies are identifying localized supply chains as their backup – if not their primary option.
We also talk the digital transformation of payments, or lack thereof. Tony says upwards of 75% of trading relationships are still paid via a traditional purchase order or traditional check, rather than e-invoicing or electronic payments – which seems astounding to him.
On the topic of digital transformation, Tony gives us some updates on supply-chain innovation. He says that companies now have dashboards up in centralized service areas. So they will have physical cameras showing all the different components of their supply chain. If anything goes wrong, they can move in real-time, which is a huge change.
Finally, we talk social media and its usefulness in sales. Tony says he gets several emails every day saying, “I stumbled across your profile, and I thought we should connect.” He says that if you’re at an industry trade show and you see the CEO of a customer company, why not walk over and go, “Hey I just happened to stumble upon you.” Why not?
You can also stream the audio-only version of this episode:
'We now have the industrial internet of things. We have cloud computing, mobile computing, big data. All these things are in relative orbit today… So now we can start to do some really interesting things.' #CloudWars Click To Tweet 'You and I've talked before about this idea of digital transformation to business model transformation. And I think this is a great example of us seeing this, in real-time, start to play out.' #CloudWars Click To Tweet 'What is used in the industry all the time is this idea of quote-to-cash… so what's starting to happen is companies are now starting to look at this idea of interest-to-invoice.' #CloudWars Click To Tweet
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Cloud Wars Live Digital All-Stars
Tony Uphoff is one of our regular Digital All-Stars. The All-Stars are experts who will appear in regular video podcasts focused on the critical themes shaping (and re-shaping!) the business world in the digital age of 2019. Our intention is to provide regular chunks of timely ideas, insights and conversations on high-priority subjects from industry veterans with diverse backgrounds.