AWESOME Leader heads up global supply chain reorganization at Emerald Kalama Chemical

June 16, 20172 minute read

Claudia Knowlton-Chike, Emerald Kamala’s SVP, global supply chain, and a member of the AWESOME network, was recently featured by Supply Chain World in an article describing her leadership role in a company transformation that involved combining 13 different supply chains into one global operation.

According to the story by Tim O’Connor, “Emerald Kalama Chemical owns and operates the two largest toluene oxidation facilities in the world, located in Kalama, Wash., and Rotterdam, The Netherlands. It also operates a third plant in Widnes, United Kingdom. Those facilities have enabled Emerald Kalama to become the planet’s largest producer of benzoic acid and hexyl cinnamic aldehyde (HCA).”

As a former engineer at IBM before moving into supply chain, Claudia put her skillset and critical thinking to work on modernizing Emerald’s supply chain. Her goal was also to introduce a global mindset with a focus on fulfillment and the customer experience.

The article reports, “During Emerald Kalama’s implementation of a global order management system last year, it formed a global customer service team to investigate ways to take time out of the ordering process. The standardizations and simplifications that came out of the collaboration resulted in driving 540 hours out of the global order management process annually.”

Claudia said that an essential part of the successful transformation was communicating upfront what the value of a truly global supply chain would be. With that kind of communication, Claudia says, “From a change-management perspective, this really went very well. People saw that as an inspiring challenge so there really wasn’t any push back or negativism around it.”