Thursday, 19 March 2009

Stock management and spring rolls

We've made a lot of progress this week at the client. The excel training for the accounts team is now complete, the order schedule is being used by the site foreman, and I have also identified another area of the business which we can help them with – stock management.

I discovered that they have no current process for managing or recording (paper or otherwise) the amount of raw material e.g. steel, which they have in stock. They are also not fully sure how much material they receive from their suppliers as every 'package' (as they describe it) of steel is different in terms of size, weight and content. They just go to their supplier and pick up a ‘package’ with the hope that what it contains is sufficient for them to produce the order for their customer, and if it isn’t, they go back and get another ‘package’. So today, with help and input from the team of IBM supply chain management consultants back in the UK, I have produced some basic training material which includes a fancy but very simple excel based tool for tracking stock. I spent this afternoon working with my interpreter, to help her understand the training material so that she could translate it into Vietnamese for the client. We’re planning on delivering the training to the client tomorrow and I feel a bit like a child on Christmas Eve (how sad does that make me sound?!) I get very excited about sharing what IBM has to offer its clients, particularly the ones we have been working with in Vietnam, as I know how something seemingly simple can make such a massive difference to their business. I have to admit it’s very motivating. It’s also a challenge because we quickly forget what it was like to work without computers.

So, in between producing the training material, discussions with my interpreter and the client, as well as my Vietnamese lesson, my client’s wife showed me how to make spring rolls - sounds like cha nem (tone going up). You’ll be pleased to know that I didn’t manage to poison anyone at lunch. Even my client’s sons and father seemed impressed by my culinary skills (but then again, they may have just been being polite). Anyway, Team Taylor will be hosting a Vietnamese dinner, when I return, for any of you who are brave enough ;-)


  1. Will the dinner be with or without crickets?

  2. We live just around the corner from a pet store, so there could be all sorts of things on the menu ;-)