In our latest speaker snapshot, we hear from Selina Kaing, strategy leader for global transportation and supply chain analytics at Google's retail operations. Selina joined Google in 2010 as part of the supplier sourcing team, handling the company’s multi-billion dollar spend base. More recently, she led partner development for Google’s Motorola division (now part of Lenovo), focusing on new technologies and initiatives related to mobile.
How did you get started in supply chain?
Perhaps the greatest irony of spending my undergraduate years studying literature was that in my professional life I took a much more grounded approach, taking an interest in the area of supply chain operations. During college, I started working for several companies in various procurement and supply chain functions - doing everything from financial analysis and planning to logistics and warehouse management. When I took a full time strategic sourcing role after graduation, I knew that this was an area where I could grow and build a meaningful career in.
What unique challenges are you facing in Google’s supply chain?
Google has a strong focus on the user, and it’s something we always keep in mind - even as we work to streamline and be more cost effective operationally. Supply chain is more than just the production and distribution of goods, it can be a way to create delightful user experiences, and I believe that this is a challenge we should all embrace.
How are you seeing the use of data expand in the supply chain? What impact do you see the growth of the IoT having on this?
I believe that sometimes we have more data than we know what to do with. We can measure everything in our supply chain, but whether or not they are the ‘right things’ is really the question we should be asking. How we surface meaningful insights that are relevant, actionable, and impactful to an organization is one of my key operating principles. Even as technology continues to evolve with the growth of IoT and ever more sophisticated devices, I still believe that fundamentally what we do with the data we gather is how we should drive conversations about technology adoption.
What will you be discussing in your presentation?
Supply chain is all about executing against a strategy. But what that really means is that you have to focus on people, and create an environment that allows them to be successful. Corporate culture is often neglected as a key lever in execution precisely because it seems so intangible and difficult to measure and implement. However, I believe that simply being mindful of how we operate while also taking advantage of opportunities to shape and reinforce positive cultural elements in any organization can only be a strategic enabler.
You can hear more from Selina on November 11–12 at the Chief Supply Chain Officer & Inventory Optimization Summit in Chicago. For more information click here.