The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted supply chains across the world and highlighted the need for companies in the Manufacturing, Retail, Distribution, Shipping and Logistics industries to put up proactive Supply Chain Management measures to ensure continued operations. Improving efficiency and performance have also proved to be top areas of focus for supply chain executives.
The Best Practices in Supply Chain Management provides an insightful look at what organisations should be doing to implement the most effective supply chains. Some of the key drivers highlighted to improve efficiency include:
- Supplier Relationship Management - Source suppliers strategically and establish an alliance management program with them. The relationship with your suppliers should be viewed as a two way street. A solid relationship with your suppliers will give you benefits such as reduced availability problems, delays and quality issues, and allow for swifter resolution.
- Contract Management - Move contract management responsibility to the supply chain so contracts are collected and maintained in a central place and regularly reviewed. Consider relying on digitization and automation of tracking and maintaining contracts to mitigate risks.
- Increase Supply Chain Visibility - Manual processes are often the cause for a lack of supply chain visibility. With the right software, you can easily access accurate and detailed reporting data to inform the right strategic planning and performance measures.
- Inventory Management - Take advantage of Inventory Strategies. Know what you have in stock and manage it well. Effective inventory replenishment processes will be unique for each organization. Select the right replenishment method based on your needs. This will create a smooth supply chain and allow the you to achieve service level targets, ultimately driving profits and enhancing customer satisfaction.
- Demand Planning and Forecasting - Demand forecasting facilitates critical business activities such as financial planning, production planning, risk assessment, and the purchase of raw materials. Forecast errors result in creating a surplus, which is both wasteful and costly. Accurately plan or predict the demand of materials to ensure you can deliver the right products and in the right quantities to satisfy customer demand.
- Logistics and Distribution - Deliver the right products to the right customers at the right time and at the least possible cost. Reassess the value of a 3PL provider if you haven't one.
- Consignment Inventory - Every part of the supply chain generates operating costs from purchasing, freight and storage, to shipping, insurance, and the dangers of obsolescence or loss. With this, you give inventory to a seller who can hold and get your inventory in front of customers all while bringing down inventory costs.
- Ecommerce Strategy - Today customers expect brand experiences to be consistent wherever they are, on any channel they choose. Expand your reach and personalize the customer shopping experience across physical and digital channels.
To ensure continued operations in the era of constant change, organizations need to put up proactive Supply Chain Management measures. Microsoft Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management delivers planning, production, procurement, inventory, and transportation functionality tools that easily scale production and distribution and keep critical processes running.
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