What is Supply Chain Management Software?
You may not realize it, but many of the products you use every day have been on an extensive journey around the world to get to you. The processes brands use to get these products into your hands is called supply chain management (SCM). It’s an integral part of any organization’s business strategy — but it’s by no means easy.
There are many ways to manage the supply chain. Historically, organizations have looked to manual processes and siloed methods that are now becoming archaic in the instant “buy it now” age. Brands are turning to supply chain management software to modernize these processes and stay competitive by decreasing costs and improving efficiency through digitization and automation. With a single platform to manage everything from design and sampling to production and costs, SCM software takes the headache out of getting products where they need to go and keeps brands, vendors, and suppliers informed.
Seven Features to Consider when Selecting Supply Chain Management Software
Every organization would like to be as lean as possible, make the most of company resources, and improve customer and supplier relationships, but some aren’t quite sure how. SCM software solves many of the common problems you face when it comes to having an efficient and effective supply chain. Here are a list of seven features you should look for when deciding on the right SCM software solution for your organization:
Communication and collaboration
SCM software gives you the ability to house all communications within a single platform and collaborate with team members (both internal and external) wherever they are. That means staying informed in real- time from design to distribution.
Project information management
Project information management (PIM) gives you a bird’s eye view of your entire supply chain. Now, you can manage the entire product lifecycle from idea conception to distribution without supply chain disruptions.
Vendor and customer management
SCM software offers an easy way to keep track of the many vendors and customers your organization works with through one central location — while staying compliant across regions. You can assess your suppliers’ capabilities and how they compare to your business strategy, as well as seamlessly assess your customers wants and needs.
Reporting and analytics
Supply chain data is critical for making the most informed decisions. With SCM software, data and analytics are captured across every stage of the supply chain, giving you clearer reporting to decide next steps, better control costs, and increase profit margins.
Product lifecycle and materials management
The early stages of the product lifecycle are critical. Look for SCM software that lets you store and manage all of your CADs for easy reference, as well as build a material library and manage inventory — all within a single platform.
Supply chain finance
Invoices, purchase orders, costing, and payments have never been easier. Supply chain tech lets you keep track of all this and more so you can increase visibility across every stage of costing, whether you’re importing data or managing POs.
Global sourcing network
The best SCM software should give your brand access to factory and vendor partners through a digitized network. Not only does this allow you to increase your supplier diversity, but it gives you full visibility of your brand within the supply chain, enabling faster productivity and speed-to-market.
What are the benefits of SCM software?
Using an end-to-end supply chain management solution improves your team’s efficiency, speeding your time-to-market by up to 50%. When you have the full picture of your supply chain, you can more accurately predict where problems will occur and solve them before they happen. Plus, teams are connected through real-time visualization and communication, making collaboration a breeze.
Lower cost of goods
SCM software provides a high return on investment, which trickles down to every component of the supply chain. With access to a network of suppliers, the ability to check compliance ahead of time, and reporting that shows you key areas to improve you, you can easily improve your cost of goods sold (COGS) and operating overhead by up to 15%.
Streamlined digital workflow
Supply chain management software also makes your team more agile, streamlining a whopping 95% of your previously manual operations into a digital workflow. This modernizes and future proofs your business, making you more efficient and easy to work with.
Improved customer lifetime value
Most of all, supply chain management software gives you time and know-how to improve your customer relationships. With data-backed decisions, more accurate forecasting, and less process snafus, you can optimize your operations to retain and attract more lifelong customers.
What are the Main Types of SCM Software?
Struggling from option overload when it comes to choosing SCM software? There are a number of SCM types, but not all are created equal. These include:
- Lean inventory tools — create only what you need at a given time
- Supplier management — analyze supplier relationships
- Order processing tools — capture data for immediate use
- Demand forecasting — be proactive by predicting future demand
- Logistics tools — catch issues quickly and improve the outbound supply chain
- Collaboration tools — communicate efficiently and effectively
- Warehouse management — planning and logistics of warehouse items
- Bid and spend tools — analyze spending and automate procurement
- Security — preventing data breaches
Which type is best for your brand? The answer is “all of them.” What you need is an all-in-one solution that will house everything for you in a single platform.
Selecting the right software to manage your supply chain is an important decision that can’t wait in today’s competitive market. Suuchi’s next-generation software accomplishes everything you need it to — from a single interface. With the GRID, you can connect all of your supply chain processes from product development and sourcing to production and distribution, ultimately increasing your visibility, lowering costs, and reducing time-to-market.