The economic volatility that occurred a decade back resulted not only in the global economic recession but also in the instability of consumer demand and rapid changes in raw material, fuel, and commodity prices. Due to this, supply chain executives were under constant pressure to formulate more customer-centric and efficient supply chains while identifying innovative ways to reduce costs and promote growth. Supply chain planning is integral to the success of any business. For companies, ensuring that supply and demand planning is on track is vital. Making constant improvements in supply chain techniques and processes are vital to achieving this. There are numerous ways for businesses to do this. And if followed correctly, it might surprise you that supply chain planning is much simpler than you think. Keep a track of these four aspects to step up your supply chain planning process:
Focus on customer needs
Having a clear-cut demand planning strategy is essential for companies to ensure that they are there are no gaps in meeting the customers’ demand. A common mistake made by manufacturers is believing that the only thing they need to be concerned with is getting their products to the retailers. Ideally, manufacturers must pay more heed to improve the quality of the product, taking into consideration the end consumers. A proper demand planning strategy ultimately results in a good supply chain planning process. This is because it helps manufacturers understand what customers want and how much inventory of one product is needed over another.
Most of the supply chain planning process relies heavily on the historical data that has been collected during a particular period. If companies aren’t focused on right data, they would have a hard time trying to make improvements, especially in activities like demand planning. Also, the data collected must be easy to understand and use. This would help in a quicker- decision making and implementation process.
For a visual explanation of supply chain planning and optimization, check out this video on YouTube:
Good communication skills are crucial for the smooth flow of operations, avoiding delays, and eliminating mistakes. This also holds true for an efficient supply chain planning. Communication among all parts of the company in question is vital to the overall success of the supply chain. Businesses must make use of computer software and equipment that can communicate with different portions of the business. This will allow for communication that is fast and efficient, which cuts down on lag time between when one department finishes a portion of the chain and another begins one. It also helps the top management to quickly find and eliminate issues that may slow down the progress a product makes through the chain.
Several tools and technologies are available today that helps companies in demand planning and also track their supply chain planning process. It is always better for companies to opt for a mix of both mobile and traditional technologies. Mobile technologies help executives with their supply chain planning attempts on the go. This will help minimize errors and issues are addressed in a timely manner. Employees should be able to tack their efforts to identify gaps in a timely fashion and rectify it before it gets too late.
To know more about the challenges and trends in supply chain planning process