The TMS Software Guru will be Key to Hillshire Brands’ Acquisition

Frenzied consolidation in the food industry this month as Hillshire Brands sought to acquire Pinnacle Foods, only to become a takeover target themselves when first Pilgrim’s Pride and next, Tyson Foods announced competing intentions to purchase Hillshire.  This morning, it was reported that Tyson won the bidding war with a $7.7 billion bidTyson CEO Donald Smith said, “We believe that there is a strong strategic, financial and operational rationale for the combination of Tyson and Hillshire.”  His statement got us to thinking about the role played by TMS software which shares similar rationales in terms of the strategic, financial and operational benefits they provide.  More specifically, we got to thinking about how critical TMS subject matter experts will be to the success of acquisitions like this and others.

When large, mature supply chains are merged, there is significant opportunity for disruption – both in the supply chain and particularly in the staffing levels of the newly wedded transportation departments.   However, supply chain practitioners with expertise in the manipulation of their company’s TMS holds a unique advantage over other members of their department.  Holding the keys to the strategic, financial and operational benefits TMS software brings to the enterprise means holding on to one’s position when redundant roles are inevitably consolidated.  More than ever, during mergers/acquisitions, the TMS expert is a mission-critical individual.

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More than ever, during mergers/acquisitions, the TMS expert is a mission-critical individual.

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Food producers, growers and processors by definition are faced with some of the most complex supply chain challenges.  Moving livestock inbound to production plants; collecting fluctuating volumes and grades of milk for dairy production; accommodating unpredictable volumes of produce which fluctuate with weather conditions; delivering fresh and frozen products with differing temperature requirements; managing private or dedicated fleets as well as common carrier relationships; perishability; each of these challenges alone would be difficult to address.  This is why food shippers are naturally vigorous adopters of transportation automation and optimization tools.   And those who harbor the innate understanding of how the transportation network interfaces with the selected automation tools become absolutely indispensable.

Keep this in mind when your company is considering engaging a TMS software solution.  Become the TMS subject matter expert and gain an extra layer of job security.  Mergers and acquisitions are not confined to food shippers either.  They are happening in every vertical today.  Be the key player in your transportation department!

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