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As globalization drives rapid change in all aspects of nearly every company's operations, effective supply chain planning - of both supply and demand - has become an increasingly critical factor to achieving high performance. And for planning professionals, their role has never been more important - or challenging. On the supply side, companies have looked to globalization to optimize costs and capability, but in the process have added considerable complexity to the planning process as executives now must manage far more complicated and extended networks of supply sources. Globalization also has forced planners to account for and manage longer and harder-to-predict lead times while balancing shorter and more complex product life cycles as companies attempt to customize their products and services both globally and locally.
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