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- Remember just-in-time inventory? Well, that's a shame, as it may be time to banish it. Born in Japan, JIT travelled across the U.S. manufacturing sector, convincing companies to streamline their stockpiles and deliver on an as-needed basis. In a survey conducted by CFO Research, in collaboration with American Express, 34% of finance executives said that within the dimensions of working capital, inventory management would be their top priority for improvement in the next year---nearly the same number, 38%, who chose receivables performance. In this report, finance leaders talk about what's made swings in demand so hard to foresee, and too long-lasting to ignore. They share the techniques they've developed for minimizing investment while also having sufficient inventory to respond to consistently unpredictable changes in customer demand.