November 2018 Print

Vision and Mission - APICS Puget Sound

Vision— APICS Puget Sound Chapter is the leading source of professional development for the Washington State Supply Chain and Operations community.

Mission— Serve Supply Chain and Operations professionals and the business community through educational experiences that will add value to our members and business partners

Seattle Skyline

APICS Puget Sound Chapter

40 Lake Bellevue, Suite 100
Bellevue, WA 98005
425 468-6178 Business Hours

[email protected]

Connect with APICS Puget Sound on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter

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Presidents Message

Office of the President

As we enter the end of the year several changes have occurred within our APICS-PS chapter that I would like to make you aware of.  Our chapter Board of Directors (BOD) has openings for a Director of Finance and a Director of Membership.  If you have an interest to offering some volunteer assistance to the APICS chapter for a board position, please let me know at [email protected].  This fall we announced the addition of an Operations Manager that was filled by Nancy Miller.  Nancy’s duties include scheduling classes, monitoring all the activities around on-line learning licenses, study materials and exam credits.  Within this activity we have opportunities for interested parties to volunteer for several special projects.  The first project is the development of the Strategic Plan, and the 2nd is the development of the Marketing Plan.  These are single one-time projects with a clear beginning and end.  If you have expertise or interest in doing a one-time project.  Please contact Nancy at [email protected].  Finally, APICS-PS has created a 12-month rolling calendar for events, activities and classes for a rolling calendar.  I am happy to announce that APICS-PS has also partnered with the Institute of Supplier Management (ISM) and with the Project Management Institute (PMI) to offer shared events.  All such events will be posted on the APICS-PS.org website.

APICS-PS was privileged to offer APICS certification course work to four local manufacturing companies during the last half of 2018.  In total, 4 CPIM and 1 CLTD certification courses were taught and completed with these companies.  In addition, APICS-PS offered a successful Hybrid CSCP course this fall with some people in the classroom and others connected via virtual meeting technology.  One course offering that has been successful this last half year is the CPIM bundle and the CLTD bundle offerings.  The bundle includes classroom or virtual training, participant guides, an On-Line Learning License, and exam credits. 

With these exciting changes and upgrades I encourage you to keep an eye on the APICS-PS.org website and consider advancing your career by gaining added experiences by offering volunteer time to a board position or to a project. 

Dennis Obermeier, MEM, CPIM, CIRM, CSCP, CLTD, PMP, Jonah


[email protected]


APICS Puget Sound Chapter is a partner with APICS, a not-for-profit international educational organization respected throughout the world for its education and professional certification programs. With more than 70,000 individual and corporate members in 20,000 companies worldwide, APICS is dedicated to using education to improve the business bottom line.

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Supply Chain's Future

Welcome to vortex of the digital age and transformation of the supply chain. Supply chains powered with fourth industrial revolution technologies are reshaping economy (Eshkenazi, 2018; Mims, 2018). APICS Executive Leadership pronounced critical importance of supporting companies strategically transforming their supply chains providing continued certifications, with the emergence of enterprise partner created for enhancing corporate transformation. Announced at the APICS 2018 Conference in Chicago “For over 60 years, supply chain professionals and organizations have relied on APICS to deliver world-class certification. But that was just the beginning. We’re excited to welcome you to the new Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM)”. ASCM with APICS certifications supports capabilities needed for digital adoptions requiring adaptions for the “accelerated pace of change in supply chain fueled by digital technologies, robotics, AI, IoT, blockchain, virtual reality and more--the increased potential for supply chain to be a strategic business advantage" (Eshkenazi, 2018).


The need for and how to of digitally driving supply chain competitive advantage strategies was offered during the scheduled APICS Chapters BOD Leadership meeting gatherings, various conference presentation sessions, numerous exhibits, and with industry case studies. Also, for APICS Conference attendees among the available local tours featured UI LABS a digital technology innovation accelerator that leverages a network of hundreds of partners from universities and industry. Manufacturing partnership with UI Labs and the Department of Defense is carried out collaboratively by Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute (DDMDII).  The DDMDII innovation center demonstration space is provided below.

DDMDIIAmong the DDMDII partnership projects are:


Shukla, Goel, and Vasudevan (2018) identified how building a digital supply chain the right way is informed by asking the following three questions: 1) What are the drawbacks of a traditional supply chain? 2) What are the benefits of a digital supply chain? and 3) How do I build a digital supply chain? Best practices from the APICS Supply Chain Leader Community can assist with the best way of answering these competitive advantage questions.

Bolstorff (2018) APICS Executive Vice President Corporate Development, shared the APICS Supply Chain Leader Community survey results from over 300 Corporations, over two-thirds majority are in the Global 2000, Fortune 1000, Global 250; and within 19 industries. Profile of the over 1,000 APICS Supply Chain Leaders participated:

  • 20% Executive overseeing end-to-end supply chain, i.e., VP of Supply Chain
  • 40% Functional leader overseeing one or more processes, i.e., Director of Logistics
  • 25% Process leader overseeing, managing a global process, i.e., S&OP Manager, Materials Manager
  • 15% Process expert, i.e., Forecasting, Supply Planning.


Among the digitally related findings are insights for Accelerating the Rate of Return on Digital Investments. APICS Leadership Poll: What are the major trends affecting the supply chain strategy?


Leaders are leveraging their companies supply chain digital strategy for competitive advantage with program evaluation assessment of processes. What are the focus areas that will best leverage these investments to gain a competitive advantage? How does your focus compare?

The Supply Chain Operations Reference (SCOR) Connects Performance to Process, Practices, and People. SCOR defines supply chain as the integrated processes of plan, source, make, deliver, return, and enable from supplier’s supplier to customer’s customer.


Critical Factors that Accelerate Rate of Return on Digital Investments:

  1. There is a tight link between competitive advantage, strategic focus area, and digital investment
  2. The portfolio is prioritized from an end-to-end supply chain perspective (versus functional priority)
  3. Implementation integrates performance, process, practices, people, data, and technology

The need for companies partnering within adaptive digital supply chains is critical for shared sustainable competitive advantages. Striving for performance improvement focusing on priorities and processes can help accelerate the rate of return on digital investments.


Bolstorff, P. (2018, October 2). Driving Competitive Advantage: Accelerating the Rate of Return on Digital Investments Insights from the APICS Supply Chain Leader Community. Results presented at the APICS 2018, Chicago.

Eshkenazi, A. (2018, September 29 - October 2). Introducing Association of Supply Chain Management (ASCM): ASCM Corporate Transformation with APICS Industry-leading Certifications and Training. Presented at the APICS Conference 2018, Chicago.

Mims, C. (2018). Inside the New Industrial Revolution. The Wall Street Journal: Technology. Retrieved from https://www.wsj.com/articles/inside-the-new-industrial-revolution-1542040187

Shukla, S., Goel, G., & Vasudevan, A. (2018). Building a digital supply chain the right way. APICS Magazine. Retrieved from http://mkto-ab230114.com/NI007Fsg000dSvO0asa0J0f

Richard Lefrandt, MEM, CSCP, PMP, ICIP, Jonah


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Annual APICS Conference

2018 APICS Conference Chicago


The APICS International Convention in September, took place in downtown Chicago in the middle of the mix of high-rise buildings, both new and old.  The convention and hotel were easy to find, as the Hotel Workers Union were striking loudly, clamoring in front of over 25 hotels for improved health benefits, wages, and sick days.

Fitting that the first session that morning was on Ethical and Sustainable Supply Chain.  This was an open session with groups of 8 discussing the topic of ethically sustainability, followed by open mike sharing of group discussion.

Keeping in mind that those who attend such a session are concerned about ethically manufactured goods, the majority of comments were relative to buying a $25 shirt -vs- an $100 shirt, the fibers obtained from validated sources, reasonable wages and health care for the workers, and companies that promotes social responsibility of some sort.  Noted were companies such as Tom’s Shoes and Burts Bees, who have both been key note speakers in prior conventions.  Each business has amazing stories on helping others or have made tremendous efforts with recycling programs:


Side conversations were more stimulating, of how the internet is leveling the playing field by making information available and driving businesses to act ethically.  Below are some examples.


  • Increasing pressures from various countries to have materials sourced from ethical and responsible companies – no slave labor, child labor, responsibly sourced:



A trip to Chicago could not be complete without a walk down the river, enChicagoDowntownRiverBoatsjoying the architecture, and some deep dish pizza:  Hank Barr, Richard Lefrandt, Nancy Miller, and Kelesy Davis. Article by Nancy Miller, CPIM, CSCP, CLTD


First-time APICS Conference Attendee: 2018 Recap
Three years after becoming an APICS member, I finally attended my fiSunriseChicagoRiverrst APICS conference. Being a Midwest native, I was excited to make the journey to the Windy City. Looking back, neither the city nor the conference disappointed! Even though the host hotel was booked prior to when I made my reservation, I thoroughly enjoyed the morning and evening walks along the Chicago River. Not only were the views spectacular, but it also gave me the opportunity to try even more of the amazing cuisine Chicago has to offer.
The APICS event APP made the conference stress-free and seamless. It allowed for easy access to the venue maps, additional information about speakers, and of course, easily allowed you to create your own agenda based off topics and/or speakers that appealed to you. Not that I am here to sell the (free) APP to anyone, but another bonus was that the speaker’s PowerPoint presentations were also accessible. Instead of spending your day frantically jotting down notes and crossing your fingers the slide didn’t change before you captured everything, you could absorb yourself in the presentation and enjoy.
There were two keynote speakers and they were both phenomenal. Sunday’s keynote was Marc Randolph – cofounder of Netflix. He was quite energetic and had an inspiring tale to tell. Overtaking Blockbuster wasn’t the original goal but sure makes for a good story. In Marc’s own words, “Nobody knows anything in advance.” That saying goes hand in hand with “no business plan survives a collision with a customer.” I found it very inspiring to hear of the early challenges that Netflix faced and that there is always a bit of a leap of faith involved. For example, in one single day, Netflix made the decision to walk away from 99% of their revenue. Sounds terrifying, however, clearly the risk paid off for them in the long run. Leaving Marc’s talk, the message that resonated with me was to be brave and try a lot of bad ideas. Don’t be afraid to take risks, and “base your decision to do something on incomplete data.”
Monday’s keynote speaker was Connie Podesta. I always admire someone that can make a room full of people burst into laughter. Connie has an interesting background as she is a comedian, author, organizational therapist, and licensed professional counselor. Connie’s main focal point was the geometric shape personality test. Without any information, we were simply told to draw one of four shapes (square, circle, triangle, or squiggle) in the air with our finger. Once everyone had their own shape to identify with, she dove in and described how each differed. She coached us through how best to interact with the other shapes, whether it be in the office, at home, with a neighbor, spouse, child, etc. Even though I have taken other personality tests, I always find value in learning new ways to approach and interact with others, as well as better understand myself - and a little laughter along the way never hurts!
Beyond the spotlight speakers, a few additional sessions I enjoyed were: “The Role That Operations Planning can (and Should) Play in New Product Development” (too relatable!) that Dustin Levy from Gentex Corporation gave. “How to Craft & Deliver a Winning Elevator Pitch” – who knew you should have so many variations ready to go at a moment’s notice, dependent on the audience and scenario (ie: networking vs. hanging out with a friend vs. an impromptu morning elevator ride with the CEO.) The elevator pitch presentation was presented by Kathleen Schroeder, APICS, and Heather Walker, Clearpath Robotics. “Navigating the unpredictable, Brexit, Hurricanes, & Tarrifs…Oh My!” was presented by five speakers (Chris Owen, James Sawyer, Jim Lahey, Philippe Guerout, and Shari Ruelas), all with very interesting ranges in background. That sessions gets the prize for my unofficial favorite fact - BMW currently has a team of 200 people actively wAPICS-PSConf2018Chicagoorking through Brexit and what it means for them. 200 people! Finally, “Redefining Airline Catering at the World’s Busiest Hub Using the Theory of Constraints, Lean & Six Sigma” was given by Chris Fay, GM Operations & continuous improvement at Delta airlines. All in all, APICS 2018 was an eye opening, thought provoking 3 days. I would strongly encourage anyone that hasn’t attended to do so. ASCM 2019 will be in Las Vegas September 16-18 and I hope to see you there!

Kelsey Davis, CPIM


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APICS Student Chapter


”In October of 2018, eight APICS members from the Western Washington University (WWU) Student Chapter had the privilege of attending the APICS national conference in Chicago, Illinois.


Western students with the CEO of APICS, Abe Eshkenazi

During their time at the conference, each student was able to attend a multitude of speaker sessions, learned from industry professionals and three students from Western’s chapter were selected as APICS Scholars. Once the students returned back to Washington, they had time to reflect on their favorite experiences. This is what they had to say:

“One of my favorite experiences at the APICS National Conference was participating in a focus group. I had the opportunity to have breakfast with five other APICS Scholars and three members of the APICS National Chapter. We discussed how the National Chapter can better foster communication between student chapters in the future. We also brainstormed ideas on how the National Chapter may be able to support more students directly. This was one of my highlights because I feel as though I made an impact on the future of APICS. Additionally, I was able to garner advice for WWU’s student chapter from other club leaders nationwide.”

-Brooke Flores, President-WWU APICS Student Chapter

“Representing Western Washington University’s Student Chapter at the APICS National Conference was a tremendous honor and honestly a lot of fun too!  It was great meeting professionals from a wide breadth of industries who are working hard to make supply chains more efficient and more sustainable.  There was so much energy and optimism in the presentations and throughout the conference, it was awesome to be a part of it all.”

-Jerry O’Malley, Vice President- WWU APICS Student Chapter

“Attending the 2018 APICS National Conference was a truly immersive experience. I would say the most influential part of the experience I had was in regard to the speaker sessions I attended. One of my life ambitions has always been to own and operate my own business, big or small. In pursuit of this ambition, I attended many speaker sessions that were about growing a supply chain and the details around the topic. One of the most impactful sessions I attended was titled “Growing a Supply Chain in a Start-Up Environment”, it was led by a woman who was the vice president of supply chain at Wonder Workshop, an educational company utilizing robots to teach K-12 important skills. I thought this session was so impactful because I got to speak with and learn from the experiences of a professional who has already navigated the path I intended on taking. I got to understand her lessons learned, pits along the way, and things she would have chosen to do differently, all which helps me with achieving my end goal of creating and operating my own company!”

-Allan Zhang, Secretary- WWU APICS Student Chapter

“Attending the APICS National Conference this fall marked my first time visiting Chicago. Chicago is the largest city I have been in and the scale really gave me perspective on the world. The APICS conference did the same for me. Talking to industry professionals who are shaping the supply chain really helped me aspire for more. My worries about getting certain internships or achieving certain grades and seemed so minuscule after engaging with leaders who are spearheading efforts to change how we think of supply chain management.”

-Saul Paez-Martinez, Treasurer- WWU APICS Student Chapter

“One of the best parts of the conference for me was simply being able to meet and connect with people from all across the country, and even with some outside of the US. Whether it's with speakers, vendors, or fellow attendees, events like this one provide endless possibilities in regard to connecting with and learning from those around you. Having the opportunity to attend this year has definitely sparked a desire to come to the conference again in the future, as well as to return to Chicago sometime!”

-Max McCreery, Memberships- WWU APICS Student Chapter

“The APICS National Conference was a great opportunity to take the information we have learned in our curriculum at WWU and compare it with what industry professionals had to say. Last Spring, I worked on a project regarding S&OP with a company located in Burlington, Washington called Hexcel. My project was focused on how companies implement S&OP and what it looks like, outside of a textbook. On the last day of the conference, there was a panel discussion called “Bringing S&OP to the Next Level”. It was interesting comparing what I had learned in class and during my project to what people were seeing in their companies.”

-Adrienne Mollet, Public Relations- WWU APICS Student Chapter


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Career Growth

Career growth and education certification courses

One way to think about education is to think Lean – i.e.: The Voice of the Customer. As we advance in our career’s, do we stop to think about our employers being our customer, and do we think about what value-added expertise we offer our company. Having had my CPIM for going on 8-years now, I can attest that using the principles taught in this certification course has helped me advance in my personal career.

That said, last year I made the decision to pursue my CSCP certification. Recalling the amount of work I put into achieving my CPIM makes me wonder why I would ever think about another cert, let alone the CSCP.  It’s a journey, and a long one, but well worth it. There is really no end to how applicable the information learned is to industry. While there is a fair amount of cross-over information within the two certifications, the CSCP takes a lot of the principles from the CPIM to a much broader and deeper perspective, covering the whole breadth of the Supply Chain.

The three Modules in the CSCP certification are; Supply Chain Design, Supply Chain Planning and Execution, and Supply Chain Improvement and Best Practices. As stated previously, the depth with which the materials will stretch most of us as we are typically focused on the industries we serve and the roles we have. This material will expand your thinking and challenge your current horizons.

Achieving this certification helps to validate what I thought I already knew and has added depth to my understanding in areas I was not as strong as originally thought. It also provides credentials to set me apart from my peers and competitors when pursuing future goals. I would encourage you to strongly consider one of these certifications to further your knowledge of Supply Chain and/or Inventory & Production Management.


Tom Zistatsis, CPIM, CSCP

Vice President

[email protected]

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Supply Chain S&OP


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CPIM Part 1 Virtual Attendance/Web via GTM

CPIM I For Onsite and Remote Attendees

January 15, 2019
5:30 PM PST - 8:30 PM PST

Karman Executive Center
40 Lake Bellevue Dr #100
Bellevue, WA 98005

CPIM 1: JAN 15, 17, 22, 24, 29, 31, FEB 5, 7

Read More



CPIM Part 2 Virtual Attendance/Web via GTM

CPIM II For Onsite and Remote Attendees

February 26, 2019
5:30 PM PST - 8:30 PM PST

Karman Executive Center
40 Lake Bellevue Dr #100
Bellevue, WA 98005

CPIM 2: Feb 26, 28 Mar 5, 7, 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28 Apr 2, 4, 9, 11, 16

Read More


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Calendar of Events

Future Meetings & Events

November 2018

2018 BOD Meeting

  • November 26

5:00 PM PST - 7:00 PM PST

APICS Puget Sound Chapter
40 Lake Bellevue, Suite 100
Bellevue, WA 98005

+ GTM GoToMeeting


Follow Preapproved Agenda

DECember 2018


Puget Sound Project Management Institute and APICS Puget Sound are partnering to jointly plan this event.  At the event you will have the opportunity of networking with both associations. 

Capital Project Improvement (CIP) projects are undertaken by King County to plan, design, and construct major utilities, environmental protection, and infrastructure need to provide multitude of services. Planning of CIP projects are performed by reviewing, analyzing, and integrating organizational processes and requirements. This presentation will describe the processes performed by King County Solid Waste Division (SWD) for planning, managing, delivering CIP projects. The PMO Manager of SWD, Zahid Khan, MSCE, PE, PMP, will share his experience in strategically planning projects and lessons learned from delivering complex and politically high-profile projects.

December 12, 2018
5:30 PM PST - 8:30 PM PST


Coast Bellevue Hotel/Hotel 116
625 116th Ave NE
Bellevue, WA 98004

Register Now

Presentation Description & Presenter Bio Zahid Khan, MSCE, PE, PMP




Lean Six Sigma TOC Training Series

5 Sessions 4 hrs each from 7.30am to 11.30am | Team-Oriented, Interactive

"Certification" will be recieved by each participant upon completion.

Learning by Doing! Application "Hands On" Classroom Enviroment.

LeanSixSigmaTOC Training

Schedule Training Series on the following areas:

* Lean Interactive Simulation Workshop | * Work Area Org. 6s & Setup Reduction, TOC | * Process Mapping & Elimination of Waste | * Continuous Improvement, Toyota Kata & Kaizen | * Problem Solving and Desicion Making


*Check our APICS Puget Sound for scheduled date in MEETING/EVENT INFORMATION to reserve your spot.

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Hello APICS Members!

Our Best Practice Tours that are sponsored by APICS and Kocer Consulting+Engineering are highly attended and really enjoyable.  We have so many great companies in Washington that are willing to share their new ideas and help other companies to improve.  Expeditors International, Legend Brands, Boeing, Nintendo, Paccar, Qualitel, and the Port of Seattle are a few of the great organizations that have provided tours over the last few years.  Everyone is typically excited to get out of the office and see something new, and it allows the hosting company to put their best foot forward and increase awareness of their products and services.  We always have a lunch that is either sponsored by the hosting company or by APICS and I always meet new people at every one of these tours.  These are a win-win for everyone involved and our programs committee will continue to organize these for our members. 

If your company would be interested in hosting a tour, or if you would like to join our programs committee, call Gaby Thomas at 206-528-0111 ext 5.  I look forward to seeing you at our next event!

Take Care,

DanKocerAPICS-PSBOD-Programs KocerConsultingEngineering

President of Kocer Consulting + Engineering, and Board Member for APICS Puget Sound

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Certification Career Credentials

APICS:  What’s In It For Me?

Take a moment and check out the APICS Programs CSCP, CPIM, CLTD, and SCOR to find out best fit(s) for enhancing your career  and  improving your companies bottom-line.

For Instructor Led APICS Certification Course Offerings by APICS Puget Sound Chapter Check Here

World-Renowed APICS Programs:

"Why you should earn the CSCP designation

  • -Increase your salary - on average designees see a 12% increase
  • -Improve your hiring potential by 65%
  • -Maximize your organization's ERP investments
  • -Effectively manage global end-to-end supply chain activities
  • -Understand how to increase customer satisfaction
  • -Increase your professional value and secure your future"


"Why you should earn the CPIM designation

  • -Increase your salary - on average designees see a 12% increase
  • -Improve your hiring potential by 65%
  • -Maximize ROI on the systems and technologies
  • -Reduce your organization's costs
  • -Provide more value to your organization
  • -Understand how to increase customer satisfaction
  • -Build your credibility and set yourself apart from peers"

"Why you should earn the CLTD designation

  • -Gain recognition in the field as a logistics expert
  • -Build credibility and set yourself apart from peers
  • -Learn latest trends in global supply chain logistics
  • -Impact your organization's bottom line
  • -Demonstrate logistics mastery of knowledge"

Supply Chain Excellence is a Journey

"More than 5,000 companies have learned to navigate that journey . . . "

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APICS Conference



Make this the year you expand your knowledge and help improve overall supply chain operations. APICS offers end-to-end supply chain, logistics and operations management conferences, seminars and events to help you advance your career and your company’s performance. 


Mark your calendar for the Join Us In Las Vegas From September 16-18, 2019 For ASCM 2019.



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