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Scalability is Key: From Startup to Supply Chain Giant (Heather Multhaupt)

Episode 19. Rule 19: Exponential Growth Requires Scalable Tech. Learn how one small company managed hypergrowth after a major acquisition.

In this episode of The Platform Rules podcast, host Dario Ambrosini is joined by guest Heather Multhaupt, VP of Team Services for Alert Innovation. This episode originally aired as part of Propel's Propulsion 2023 event.

A major acquisition can be great news for a small tech startup, but it’s also complicated work to manage such huge growth in a such a short time. When Alert Innovation was acquired by Walmart for its best-in-class e-grocery fulfillment technology, it was up to Multhaupt to create a smooth, scalable infrastructure for the transition.

Listen to the full episode above, or click here to subscribe to The Platform Rules podcast for brand new episodes delivered wherever you prefer to listen.

Valuable Takeaways:

1. Prioritize solving problems and understanding processes before selecting tools.

2. Focus on scalability from the beginning to avoid future challenges.

3. Vet tool providers thoroughly and ensure a strong partnership.

Key Insights:

On Managing Sudden Growth:

"It's hard to believe that we are this little tiny startup and we've been acquired by the largest retailer, the largest company in the world. But we are with Walmart, and they're a great partner. We just continue to define the best infrastructure that's going to support the technology, the resources required to scale the technology, and how best to approach our future together."

On Scalability:

"Because we expected to scale, we planned for success. We've been selecting tools in the IT space with the expectation that we were going grow to the scale we're currently anticipating with Walmart. And so as we have been selecting our systems, an important requirement is always that the technology is going be able to grow with us."

On Reliable Access to Product Information:

"Great information allows me to make reports and business intelligence available for real-time decisions. And this is really important. Everyone understands how important it is to be able to develop great products and change great products while always understanding how we're minimizing technical risk, schedule risk, product quality risk, and minimizing the cost of change."

Learn how Propel helps companies to scale their processes as business grows. Explore the solution.

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Digital transformation is all the rage, but there’s no clear definition of its scope and even less practical guidance about how to achieve it. To help manufacturing leaders navigate these uncertain waters, Propel has arrayed a roster of industry luminaries. Dario Ambrosini, Propel CMO, hosts product and other Propel leaders as they put forth a set of key tenets—The Platform Rules—to heed along your journey.

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