Cyndi Scallion – Driving Change & Growth in a New Era of Logistics Solutions with Determination

Top 10 Most Influential People in Supply Chain, 2023

Cyndi Scallion, Vice President, Supply Chain and Facilities Management at Segra is an accomplished supply chain executive with over 15 years of progressive experience currently overseeing procurement, distribution, warehouse operations, and facilities management.

In this interview, Cyndi graciously shares her professional experience, knowledge, and learnings in the Supply Chain industry.

Segra – An independent fiber bandwidth company

Built on a 125-year legacy of connectivity, Segra owns and operates 30,000 route miles of advanced fiber infrastructure network throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern United States. Segra offers a full suite of enterprise services, providing connectivity, cybersecurity, collaboration, and cloud solutions for its customers, which include, carriers, enterprises, governments, and healthcare organizations.

The reliability and speed of Segra’s fiber network are unparalleled. Connectivity solutions include Segra’s SD-WAN which securely supports application growth, and intelligently steers traffic for consistent performance over multiple connection types including MPLS, LTE and broadband.

Segra’s Dedicated Internet Access (DIA) provides a dedicated, secure, reliable connection to the Internet that has guaranteed bandwidth, as well as Segra’s Long-Term Evolution services, which keep out-of-office employees and remote sites securely connected to customer’s networks.

Segra’s cloud-based services allow businesses to replace costly hardware investments with a robust suite of services and solutions, providing a one-stop shop for all their virtual infrastructure needs. Because Segra owns its carrier-grade connectivity network – unlike most cloud service providers – it can offer its customers multiple advantages and benefits, while improving efficiency and reducing costs. Cloud solutions include Segra’s IaaS platform, which takes the data center headache out of customer-managed server environments, connections via private fiber network into a 24/7/365 staffed, highly available data centers, leveraging all the compute and storage resources needed to run the most critical applications.

Segra’s robust suite of managed services – which includes Hosted Firewall, SOCaaS, and DDoS protection – keeps businesses connected and secure while guarding against cyberattacks and unplanned network outages. With a wide range of data and cybersecurity solutions and fully compliant services, Segra offers peace of mind – and a foundation for long-term success.

The supply chain transformation

Segra’s supply chain transformation was broad and included planning, strategic sourcing, warehouse operations, and logistics. It was a full-scale, end-to-end transformation designed to build capabilities that didn’t exist before. Beginning with an assessment to review existing capabilities quickly revealed that Segra had some critical gaps.

“We embarked on our ‘Silk Road’ journey to transform the supply chain by enabling new processes, performance, people, and systems. Some of the top issues Segra faced earlier included: no planning capability, no strategic sourcing capability, data gaps and lack of system integration, sub-optimal warehouse footprint and operations, and a lack of platforms/tools,” Cyndi elaborates.

Articles of Excellence

At Segra, their core values are represented in what they call their “Articles of Excellence” and reflect the deep sense of purpose they bring to work every day. Their customer-centric approach to business enables success.

“We excel at challenges, embrace change and always strive to do the right thing,” Cyndi affirms.

Cyndi explains Segra’s Articles of Excellence below:

  • Stay True:We are honest with ourselves and with others. We earn trust every day. We do what is right, we follow through and we never compromise our values.
  • Embrace Change:We adjust, evolve, expect shifts, and find solutions. We are flexible, open-minded and we iterate constantly. We celebrate the victories, and we learn from the losses.
  • Choose to Win:Whether we are laying new fiber routes, closing a million-dollar deal or answering the phone, we take part in all that we do. We study and understand the challenges. We strategize on the game plan and then we find a way to win.
  • Be the Consumer:We know that without our customers, our company goes away. We listen, we have empathy, we show respect. We make every conversation count, and we go that extra mile to make every experience more memorable.
  • Light the Fire:We empower ourselves through education and self-improvement and we empower those around us to achieve their potential. We are responsible risk takers who seek information and search for the right tools.
  • Create a Legacy:We create value for our customers, our employees and our owners. By doing so, we establish a heritage of reliable infrastructure, constant innovation, and good stewardship.
  • Build the Bones: 1 + 1 = 3 is what makes us great. We seek the wisdom of others. We share our talents, and we collaborate in continuum. We know that ‘command and control’ never works. For it is only as a team that we achieve common goals.
  • Set the Pace: In our quest for innovation, we are bold, competitive, and confident. We test boundaries, we question the status quo, and we push beyond expectations. We are unafraid of what lies ahead.

Roadmap to the future of Segra

The goal for Segra is to create an efficient and effective supply chain where the company receives the most competitive pricing and speed-to-market is enabled through end-to-end operations.

In 2022, at Segra they focused on addressing critical capability gaps within supply chain as mentioned above. This year’s focus is documenting and standardizing processes, evolving their process maturity across all verticals, operationalizing tools to drive discipline and analytical rigor, and automating manual processes.

“In addition, we are focusing on executing sourcing projects, exceeding our savings commitments, optimizing our inventory and warehouse operations, and continuing to address any remaining capability gaps,” Cyndi states.

Cyndi’s daily responsibilities at Segra

There are three verticals within Segra’s supply chain: Planning, Sourcing & Procurement, and Delivery/Fulfillment.

At Segra, they consistently build plans to ensure that they can receive equipment in the right quantities, at the right time. Recognizing that they must navigate challenging supply chain lead times, they are very precise in how they plan for their equipment.

When Cyndi started, Segra did not have a planning function, so they had to build out their planning capability. The second vertical is sourcing and procurement where they identify suppliers for all the goods and services, vet them, and then negotiate agreements to achieve the most favorable outcome. The final vertical is delivery, where they receive equipment into their distribution network to fulfill their customer needs.

“On any given day, I focus on a mix of activities in any of the three verticals,” Cyndi states.

Grand achievements as a successful business leader

Every challenge is an opportunity to learn something new and develop creative solutions on how to solve each challenge. Cyndi typically dives in headfirst to ensure she understands all necessary details, asks the right questions, engages the right team for assistance, and works through the opportunity.

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” — Maya Angelou

Nothing defines success more than bringing an entire team along on a transformational journey and as a mentor and leader Cyndi always likes having a team that is engaged, doing amazing work, adding value, and having a whole lot of fun along the way. Cyndi is very passionate about finding uniqueness and untapped talents in each team member and helping them recognize their fullest potential.

For years Cyndi has been transforming sourcing categories, portfolios, sourcing and procurement organizations, and most recently, an end-to-end supply chain transformation at Segra.

“Transformations within supply chain are what I consider my greatest accomplishments,” she exclaims.

Being able to impact the business in a positive manner and making significant impacts to the bottom line is incredibly fulfilling. Additionally, Cyndi states that helping a team learn new skills and grow is extremely rewarding. When teams see results from a business transformation it energizes them and pushes them to reach higher.

“Having a high performing team with deep expertise that business teams rely on for support and strategic guidance is unbelievably rewarding. When you can look back at where you started, celebrate the wins along the way, a transformational journey to best-in-class is amazing,” she adds.

“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”— Nelson Mandela

Cyndi’s wise advice to aspiring leaders is: Do great work that you can be proud of, but don’t be so hard on yourself— not everything has to be perfect. Take calculated risks, and don’t be afraid to take on big challenges. Exercise a bias for action, and course correct along the way. Be tough on the issues, but gracious with people. Don’t underestimate the power of positivity!