CISCOM through the Decades

In 2004, the first version of CISCOM was developed as The Supply Chain Primer, in response to the need for a dynamic and engaging training program in supply chain management. We are proud to see that CISCOM has met the expectation, which is evidenced by the fact that it is the only training program in supply chain management accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), a global mark of distinction.
Today, CISCOM training is accessible globally through the instructor-led online course, and also delivered locally through BRASI Affiliates. It is estimated that the demand for supply chain and operations management training will increase with time. CISCOM is poised to meet this requirement, and we will continue to serve the emerging needs of the businesses and professionals in the years to come.

BRASI is an ANSI-accredited Certificate Issuer

CISCOM is the only training program on the subject accredited by the American National Standards Institute, USA.


CISCOM – Professional Credential: Attend the instructor-led training from your own location

CISCOM training is offered online from our US location for global participants and in-class at our Affiliate locations. The training comprises a total of 50 hours, including instructor-led training, case study, assignments, learning quizzes and computer-based simulation. Both delivery formats prepare candidates for the standard CISCOM Exam, which is conducted online. Further details are available in our course brochure. The next online course will begin on May 11, 2019 and ends on August 10, 2019. Book your spot now!

View the Course Calendar here

Click here to register

Click here to view the downloadable CISCOM Brochure

Watch CISCOM introductory video here


CISCOM Summer Promotion: Instructor-led Online Course

Beginning on July 27, ending on October 19, 2019

Attend from your location

Receive your CISCOM Designation in just 13 weeks, and save $600 on course fee with GT Scholarship

Use Coupon Code CISCOM995 at check out

Deadline Friday, July 19 or while funds last

Questions? Write to



The new BRASI website has been launched. It contains enhanced functionalities and features for students, instructors and other stakeholders. Further improvements and upgrades are in progress as a part of our continuous improvement initiative.


Meet with Michael Tanas, CISCOM

Michael has a Master’s degree in Business Administration (MBA) from the Netherlands, and in International Business and Management (IB&M) from the UK. He has over 10 years of experience in consulting, training, business development and capacity building.

He is currently a Marketing Lecturer at Bethlehem University - Faculty of Business Administration. Michael is also a freelance trainer and conducts workshops related to Community and Organizational Development. He is also a consultant that specialized in Life-Skills training courses, Business Development, Management, and Marketing. 

BRASI proudly welcomes Micheal to the list of May 2019 CISCOM Certification graduate.



Managing Supply Chain Risks


Identify the bottleneck

First, one must ensure that there is visibility and alignment of the value chain towards the ultimate goal of supplying the customer. Visibility requires firstly a full understanding of the flow of value along the chain. It requires a clear view of what good looks like, what success is and how it can be measured, and what can prevent that success from happening.

Organisations need, in effect, to identify the “bottleneck,” or the weak links in the process, and take the appropriate action. This could be a risk assessment, which weighs up the risk and mitigating actions or specific resolutions.

Creating ownership beyond silos

Secondly, there needs to be ownership of the whole chain in such a way, which allows the risks along the chain to be tackled. There is evidence that supply chains are often managed functionally with metrics, systems
and behaviours geared to managing the performance of a specific area.

Whilst detailed functional knowledge and understanding are essential to delivering a quality product, a narrow view can
leads to a potential misalignment of the different elements of the chain towards the end goal. Senior management needs to ensure that decisions, which are taken at the top, are not sub-optimised in the operational execution.

Skills and capabilities to execute

Thirdly, the skills and
competences across the supply chain must be secured. This starts with the functional skills in each area to provide the depth of executing a process. Then there is the ability to look beyond the function and see the holistic relationship of an action taken in one area and the impact in another. True maturity of the organisation can be measured in terms of how top down and across the organisation the supply chain is embedded, how the supply chain is really performing at each stage, and how risk is being assessed and acted upon on a daily basis.

In addition, competences in managing the data requirements and using IT systems need attention. The return on any systems implementation is only achieved when all people are fully using the potential of the system to manage the process, predict risk and actively make decisions at the right time.

Using supply chain data analytics to drive performance

A business is only as strong as the chain of suppliers it works with. So leaders must recognize and work to understand the factors that promote strong risk management in the supply chain. Ensuring that your goods arrive on time is only a piece of the whole.

Managing vendor relationships, building strong payment
protocols, and knowing the geographic challenges associated with growth can help keep risks under control. See our five steps to supply chain risk management—to help you gain competitive advantage, protect your brand, and drive growth.

Managing risk from beginning to end

Risk management in the supply chain has become increasingly important as companies both large and small seek to extend their global reach. Enterprises entering new markets often need to form new supplier relationships, engage with state-owned entities, and adapt to local laws and culture.

The resulting complexity in the supply chain can mask a wide range of financial, regulatory, and legal risks.

Proactive risk management

In this context, it is not surprising that supply chain waste and disruptions arising from fraud and abuse have become more common. Fortunately, proactive risk management in the supply chain has shown to be a cost-effective approach. Companies that indicated that they proactively manage supply chain risk spend 50 percent less to manage supplier disruptions than companies that stated that they are not proactive.

As your company makes strategic choices, such as expanding geographic reach and taking on the related risks, you need to effectively manage risk from beginning to end. This
mind-set can help your organization gain competitive advantage, maintain your brand’s reputation, and ultimately, use an understanding of risk to drive performance.

Get to know your potential suppliers

An effective due-diligence process answers critical questions about a third party’s business practices.

For example:

Does it have a strong record of accomplishment for meeting contractual obligations?

Do existing business relationships create any conflicts of interest?

Does it observe the same high standards as your company with respect to providing safe working conditions and protecting
the environment?

Be sure to consider whether your existing supply network can meet your needs before deciding to bring on a new supplier. Forming strategic partnerships with a select group of your best suppliers can allow you to capture a wide variety of benefits—including the potential for scale advantages and priority service.

Make sure you get what you’ve asked for

Carefully monitor the goods and services you are receiving to ensure that the quality and quantity strictly adhere to the requirements set out in your contract with the supplier.

Despite your best efforts related to due diligence, you may find yourself working with a supplier that provides goods or services that are inferior to what your contract calls for.

Only pay for what you’ve actually received

Your accounts-payable processes should equip you to ensure that a supplier’s invoice corresponds precisely to the goods or services you have actually received.

Having a complex network of contractors can increase the risk of duplicate billing, inappropriate mark-ups, and improper related- party billing.

Prevent or resolve disputes effectively

Disputes are inevitable at each stage of the supply chain. One key to mitigating dispute-related risks and promoting smooth operations is to proactively prevent disputes from occurring or resolve them amicably if they happen.

The right processes and technologies are essential for identifying sources of disagreement that might disrupt the supply chain.

Avoid risks in the sales process

Companies should also be attuned to the risks that arise from sales operations. Your sales operations are a crucial link in a loop that returns to your
suppliers, because customer demand ultimately affects your purchasing requirements.

To address this risk, you must understand the liability that sales interactions expose your company to. Sales are the lifeblood of your company, so the motto “do no harm” should guide efforts to drive higher revenue growth.

Mitigate risk and create value

Creating value in your supply chain while simultaneously mitigating risks to your company requires a coordinated effort between multiple stakeholders in the business, including supply chain and procurement personnel, legal, compliance, and finance.

Vetting potential third-party relationships is a critical first step to mitigating risk to your organization, but it’s only a first step.

By working together across the business, these various stakeholders can design a strategy for using third-party relationships to increase value within the supply chain. Companies that succeed can both protect their brands and drive business growth.

Practical ways to alleviate cyber risk

Cybersecurity is a critical issue facing supply chains, and as
cyberattacks become more frequent and intense, companies that ignore cybersecurity — especially within their supply chains — will compromise both their operations as well as the inherent trust necessary to protect their bottom lines.

As the recent example with Maersk indicates, not only can a
cyberattack shut down operations, but it can also cost a company millions of dollars as it loses business, devotes extra resources to get systems back online, and then upgrade their security measures so that they won’t be hacked again.

  • Educate your suppliers on cyber risk
  • Hold suppliers to accountability standards
  • Updating old security systems should be a top priority

A supplier’s financial condition is a primary risk factor

Many supplier performance issues are related to finances. Deliveries were late and shortages were piling up with no relief in sight. The primary supplier was actively blaming the secondary supplier for the bottleneck, claiming that their supplier was behind in their coating process. They began casting aspersions on the supplier’s lack of process control, communication and even hinted at ethical issues.

While the protocol was for the primary supplier to manage all downstream relationships, this problem had escalated high enough that it was time to call the supplier directly to get to the bottom of the issue and develop a get-well plan.

  • Pay special attention to small business and early stage companies. They may be riskier suppliers due to smaller capitalization, limited customers and cash flow constraints.
  • Identify sole-source suppliers and review their financial condition. Sole-source suppliers who will not share financial information should rank high on the risk register. Invest in secondary sources where needed.
  • Subscribe to data services that will advise of potential financial issues with suppliers.
  • Stay current on business and economic issues and trends that may influence the supply chain and ultimately your business.
  • Have frank discussions with your suppliers on performance issues. Make their financial condition part of any business review.
  • Reduce dependence of high value suppliers. The traditional rule of thumb is never to be more than 30% of any one supplier’s business no matter how good their performance, as the risk exceeds the reward.
  • Encourage tier one suppliers, and critical tier two suppliers, to report on potential extended tier financial issues.
  • Pay your own bills on time. Companies will automatically service well paying customers better than they will automatically service late paying customers.

Labor risk prevails through the supply chain

The first step to managing risk, then, is being aware of the various ways labor concerns may affect
supply chains. Five types of labor risk come to mind:

  • Third party risk — beyond tier 2 and 3 is where the biggest risks lie. Suppliers are an extension of a company, and a failure to acknowledge downstream working conditions, the use of child and forced labor, or discrimination and harassment by suppliers could cause serious damage to brands
  • Workplace safety — as automation continues to spread across the supply chain, so too should safety concerns. “Workplace safety needs to be a paramount concern.
  • Union management — not all strikes are caused by associated workers, but many of them are. Most recently, East Coast ports suffered a scare as the dockworkers’ union threatened to strike over concerns of automation and regulation.
  • Regulatory shifts — There’s a laundry list of regulations affecting labor in supply chains, but Ritter says the top three legal concerns are wage and hour issues, employee classification, and rules on what information former employees can use or share.
  • Talent concerns — alongside the rise of automation is also the need for skilled labor. Employers should also pay attention to their pipeline, to ensure a talent shortage does not befall the industry as baby boomers retire.

How to rebound from natural disasters

In the immediate aftermath of a disaster, it is not easy to keep a clear head, so here are some tips for making a full recovery:

  • Renew business as quickly as possible: conduct inventory assessments, identify alternate suppliers and maintain sufficient insurance.
  • Have a plan in place to ensure equipment is safe and operational (or know where to find replacements or subcontractors).
  • Determine recovery time objectives and how to meet them.
  • Determine what must be accomplished before the premises are safe for return.

Politics force “constant volatility” on supply chains

Due to the complexity of political risk management, large companies frequently outsource the service to third-party firms capable of analyzing data and events on a real-time basis.

Companies may benefit from dividing risk factors into three distinct types:

  • Domestic, regulatory risks – Industry-specific shifts within countries, such as traceability rules for perishables or the electronic-device mandate for the trucking industry in the U.S. Shifts in tax regimes, as seen in India or Australia, also count as political risk.
  • Shifts in international policy – Shifts in a country’s stance toward imports and exports, or participation in existing international institutions. The U.S.’ crackdown on Buy American policies, and existing trade disputes with Canada and China over lumber and steel, respectively, are a few examples.
  • Cataclysmic events – Major events that threaten to undo the status quo, such as the U.K.’s vote to leave the European Union. Further examples are shown in the chart above. Depending on the level of regime control, new heads of state — like the Philippines’ Duterte — can significantly alter a country’s business environment.


Danish Mairaj
Managing Editor, BRASI

Different Types of Risk in Your Supply Chain, and How to Avoid Them
Understanding risk management in the supply chain
The 5 types of supply chain risk


Welcome our new Affiliate

BRASI Partners with Pediment Consulting, Serbia

Pediment Consulting is a management consulting firm and the leading advisor on financial management. An extensive international experience and linking to international organizations give us strong competencies to partner with clients in all industries in the region of Southeast Europe.

Pediment collaborates with clients to help them achieve high performance businesses, find value growth opportunities and transform their businesses. By providing integrated and customized solutions and recommendations to client’s current and future issues, Pediment gains long-term client’s loyalty while clients achieve sustainable results.

Pediment Consulting is the Authorized Training Center for CISCOM program in Serbia.



How AI Is Making Inroads in Auto Manufacturing

A recent article published on Industry News, Mike Hessler expains that by deploying artificial intelligence at scale in manufacturing, large automotive OEMs can boost their operating profits by up to 16%.  
According to him, despite the huge potential, there is still a slow progress in taking AI from experimentation to enterprise deployments. One of the primary reasons he cited is that many OEMs are not knowledgeable what use cases to use and focus on. However, a new Capgemini research has revealed that there are prime opportunities for this in the areas of manufacturing and operations. 

Hessler also said that they have analyzed 45 AI use cases across different functions to assess which provided the greatest benefits. They evaluated them based on the relative complexity to deliver a scaled solution and the anticipated benefits. Of these manufacturing-focused use cases, they have identified 4 that offers high benefits with low complexity and are ideal candidates for OEM AI investments.  
Apart from improvements in manufacturing and operations, he explains that AI has enormous potential to reinvent the end-to-end customer experience.  These efficiencies according to him are going to fuel the innovation to enable us to compete in the future automotive industry, which will include players such as Google, Uber, and Microsoft. 

About the author:
Mike Hessler is the North America Automotive and Industrial Equipment Lead at Capgemini, a global leader in consulting, technology services, and digital transformation.

How AI Is Making Inroads in Auto Manufacturing


Beware of dry, tall grass when parking your vehicle off road in summer. The heated exhaust system can potentially spark a fire. Always park on paved surface with no oil, solvent or other chemicals on it.
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