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ANSI Joint Member Forum Discusses Global Supply Chain Management at World Standards Week 2008

New York, Oct 27, 2008

Over 100 members of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Federation convened at an October 23 meeting of the Joint Member Forum (JMF) to discuss strategic business issues in the standards and conformity assessment community.

The meeting kicked off with introductory remarks from S. Joe Bhatia, ANSI president and CEO. Bhatia stressed that the annual JMF meeting is an opportunity for ANSI members to engage in a discussion of cross-cutting strategic business issues.

“Everybody is buzzing about supply chain management, from this community all the way to corporate America and Congress,” explained Bhatia. “With a marketplace and a global supply network that is expanding and evolving faster than ever before, it is difficult to keep pace with the growing number and complexity of standards, regulations, testing and auditing programs.”

Following these remarks, keynote speaker Steve Patton, a principal in the Americas Business Advisory Services Practice of Ernst & Young (E&Y) and a leader in the firm’s work with the automotive sector, led a discussion of the upcoming E&Y report, Strategic Business Risk: 2009 – the Top 10 Risks for Business, and its preliminary findings. While providing insight to the development process E&Y employs to create the report, Patton explored management issues pertaining to the global supply chain – including sustainability issues that affect costs, reputation, risks, and opportunities for growth.

After a brief intermission, the meeting reconvened to receive reports from ANSI Member Forum chairs: Michael Taubitz of General Motors (GM), representing the Company Member Forum; Linda Golodner of the National Consumers League, speaking on behalf of the Consumer Interest Forum; Mary Saunders of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), representing the Government Member Forum on behalf of Gregory Saunders of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD); and Sharon Stanford of the American Dental Association, speaking for the Organizational Member Forum. Each chair provided a brief overview of recent, current, and future priorities within each constituency group.

Following these reports, the Forum chairs participated in a moderated roundtable discussion addressing the cross-cutting issues that face the ANSI Federation. The dialogue laid the foundation for each member forum chair to easily bridge the discussion topics with their respective meeting agendas. Jim Pauley, vice president of Industry and Government Relations for Square D and vice chair of the ANSI Board of Directors, acted as moderator.

Forum chairs raised a number of critical issues for the ANSI Federation, including the importance of educating consumers, CEOs, government agencies and the incoming Administration on the importance of standards and standards participation. In addition, the discussion generated a number of ideas for how the forums could better identify and address horizontal issues, including scheduling teleconferences between forum chairs, open agenda teleconferences for all members, sharing meeting agendas and minutes, and more joint forum meetings.

The Joint Member Forum was part of the World Standards Week 2008 series of events. For more information and to view the week’s proceedings, please visit this website.

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