How good is your supply chain performance? Many suppliers perhaps believe theirs is pretty good; however, it seems each year when businesses are surveyed by the numerous supply chain consulting firms and trade magazines, visibility usually ranks at the top of the list as an area for improvement. Indeed, the typical supply chain has become much more complex over the years as manufacturing expands to Asia, South America, Africa, and so on. Production lead times have become longer as products continue to diversify. As a result, the need to improve supply chain operational speed and accuracy is great. This complexity reflects the need for visibility in order to optimize one’s supply chain performance.
It is important to be able to track, manage and monitor the status of inventory throughout the supply chain process—from manufacturing to procurement to sales, and through customer service. Knowing the status of inventory in the pipeline is crucial for buyers who are making the replenishment and stock transfer decisions and operational managers who are managing the flow of goods. Departments concerned with inventory availability struggle to obtain the information they need with enough lead time for them to ensure the inventory is received complete and on time. Any possible disruption can have a negative effect on not only your costs but also on your brand and your customer— thus resulting in poor supply chain performance.