Head of Supply Chain – Mexico

Scenario


In our case study, a Fortune 500 heavy equipment manufacturing company engaged BWC Executive Group, LLC, to fill a mission-critical opening for expansion into Monterrey, Mexico. The assignment was a confidential executive search for a Head of Supply Chain.

Challenge


The engagement was a challenging search because the client was looking for a single person to do the job of three people in Monterrey, Mexico.  The manufacturing client was in the process of opening a new manufacturing and distribution site and had minimal vendors to choose from for a supplier base.  They were looking for someone who comes from the heavy equipment industry of manufacturing, a person who has built a team from the ground floor, who has vetted out suppliers and managed inventory, and someone who can build brand awareness.   

Strategy


Working closely with the Chief Procurement Officer and the VP of Global Supply Chain, whom this person would report to, we discussed the types of companies that may have ideal candidates.  Taking into consideration our client’s level of revenue and the business being a national operation, we focused on companies with similar or higher scope, both financially and geographically, within Mexico. 

The search plan called for a comprehensive outreach that primarily targeted candidates within significant heavy construction manufacturing, automotive manufacturing, or agriculture manufacturing business units.  We also included specific layers of the consumer goods community for potential, unconventional candidates.

We approached individuals at the levels of Manager or Director of Supply Chain or Procurement and General Manager based on their companies’ sizes and organizational structures.  We specifically targeted those who were running similar-sized unites in a comparable capacity within large and well-respected companies.

Results


Our client selected an individual who came from a major heavy equipment manufacturer around Monterrey, Mexico, where he was managing logistics operations, inventory planning, ERP system implementation, and vendor selections.  He had been with the company for ten years, and he had created a strong reputation for himself with suppliers.  He also had a proven track record of outstanding performance and a fast-track career progression that elevated him to the Supply Chain Manager quickly.  Therefore, he could perform the Head of Supply Chain role from day one and was also able to assume additional responsibilities over time.

This candidate had solid credentials on paper, but the major driving factor that led to his selection was his cultural fit within our client’s organization. The client placed significant value on work ethic, integrity, wiliness to connect with vendors, operations, sales teams, and executive abilities.  He possessed the ability to quickly identify issues with projects, processes, procedures, and existing talent.

After one year with our client’s organization, the new Head of Supply Chain has been involved with many changes.  Within that time, he:

  • Strategically arranged key supply vendors in various regions in Mexico to help strengthen vendor alignment. 
  • Begun to realign the Mexico structure to create more efficient, effective, and unified operations. 
  • Assumed additional direct reports and responsibilities amongst the executive team.

Our client hired the Head of Supply Chain with the expectation that this individual would address several known internal challenges and identify additional areas for improvement.  The candidate has created positive momentum within his one-year tenure, and he has expressed optimism about continuing the actual execution of plans and changes to enhance the organization further.

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