With every new year comes the desire to set and achieve goals, and with 2020 throwing so many curveballs to businesses of all sizes, 2021 is set to be a year of enthusiasm and drive to recover momentum.
There are often very clear goals to achieve when it comes to supply chain management (SCM). Unfortunately, how you achieve those goals is not always as obvious. That is why we put together this list of our top five supply chain management goals and how to achieve them.
1. Add Value for your Customers
It can be easy to lose sight of the most crucial link in your supply chain at times, and that link is the last one—the customer. You can find alternative suppliers, manufacturers, and logistics companies, but if there is no one to buy your products, there is no need for a supply chain at all.
Anytime you can leverage your supply chain management system to add value for your customer, you should take that opportunity—whether it is providing comprehensive tracking capabilities, transparent compliance certifications, or any number of other possibilities. Your customers’ value will change with every business, but the loudest call this year has been for transparency and sustainability. Seek out SCM tools that collect data and track your supply chain from start to finish chain, and you will be well ahead of the curve on being able to prove your practices in the new year.
2. Build Contingencies
If 2020 and the pandemic have taught us anything, it’s that disaster can strike any time, and on any scale. Many businesses were caught off-guard, and, as a result, many of those businesses are no longer trading. Even titans can fall!
It is not feasible to prepare for every possible eventuality, but using the data your supply chain provides, you can identify potential weaknesses and establish contingency plans where possible. The most reliable way to obtain this data is through SCM software, which can automate much of that data collection.
Moreover, establishing open communication between the links in your supply chain can allow for faster response times and better forecasting. Seek out tools for your business that improve communications and foster transparency in your supply chain so that you can react quickly to any tip in the scales.
3. Iron out the Little Problems
If there is one area in a business where small problems can accumulate without regular due diligence, it is within a supply chain. It should come as no surprise that things can get out of step with so many different components working together, including several different companies. Missed delivery dates due to miscommunication, incorrect designs used during production, and inefficient logistics are just a few.
These things can represent small problems by themselves, but they add up to a lot of lost money in the bigger picture. With a single source of truth—finally achievable with our innovative supply chain management solution, the Suuchi GRID—all of your supply chain partners will be singing the same tune.
4. Make Your Supply Chain Adaptable
In a world where new opportunities and challenges present themselves all the time, it pays to be an adaptable company that can roll with the punches. Having a full grasp of your supply chain’s capabilities will allow you to paint a complete picture of what is achievable with your current partners and what might be doable with relatively minor changes.
One surefire way to ensure a supply chain becomes a money-sink is to allow excess. There is a fine line to walk between being prepared for eventualities and wasting money. Don’t leave your business vulnerable to the slightest change in circumstance. Look for opportunities to streamline your operations. Examples of this include keeping less stock and switching to fewer deliveries with more products delivered at once or even redesigning a product’s packaging to have more products shipped at once with less waste in production. Always looks for ways to evolve and innovate, and you’ll never be left behind.