RALEIGH, NC, January 11, 2010 -- Companies adapting to recession and recovery are finding that the dynamic of inventory management is shifting, according to a new white paper by global supply chain and inventory experts.

"There have always been conflicting views on the proper levels of inventory, but now we see it elevated to a whole new height of organizational tension," says Jim Tompkins, President and CEO of Tompkins Associates and the paper's co-author. "It's not that the role of inventory has suddenly changed, rather it has evolved as organizations have become more focused on managing inventory at the same time that the economic picture has made it more difficult to manage."

Evolution to World-Class Inventory Management stresses the integration of people/organization, business processes, theory, and enabling technologies -- all aligned with the firm's business and operating strategies. The paper also discusses the managerial approaches necessary to move from Inventory Optimization to Sales, Inventory & Operations Planning (SIOP) and beyond to supply chain-oriented product development, as well as SKU and supplier rationalization.

Co-author Ralph Cox, Principal at Tompkins Associates, sees advanced decision-making through SIOP as one of the keys to attaining world-class inventory management. "There are conflicts within companies that inventory optimization alone cannot address," he notes. "SIOP provides a platform for addressing any conflicts that deserve cross-functional management consideration."

Planning, sales, marketing, product development and manufacturing each have their own priorities but are increasingly discovering that they need to align to meet today's competitive challenges. Learn more about world-class inventory management and how it is helping organizations weather the recession and grow in the next decade by downloading the white paper at http://www.tompkinsinc.com/publications/monograph/inventory.
About Tompkins Associates
Tompkins Associates designs and integrates global end-to-end solutions for companies that embrace supply chain excellence. For more than 30 years, Tompkins has evolved with the marketplace to become the leading provider of global supply chain services, distribution operations consulting, technology implementation, material handling integration, and benchmarking and best practices. Headquartered in Raleigh, NC, the company is known for innovative, practical solutions that transform supply chains for profitable growth. For more information, visit www.tompkinsinc.com. Subscribe to Tompkins Associates' newsletter, Supply Chain Edge.