Ensuring supply chain management runs smoothly and efficiently is key to avoiding unnecessary issues and disruption. It’s important that supply chains are closely monitored, especially in times of rapid business growth. Here are some top tips to ensure your supply chain management runs effectively:
1. Creating a risk management plan that clearly outlines risks, how they affect your supply chain and how you would deal with it is important for all organisations as it sets a process in place.
2. Selecting the right suppliers and having a close relationship with them is important. When selecting suppliers, you must consider pricing, variation and relationship. You have probably heard the saying “you get what you pay for”, this is very true when speaking of suppliers. Choosing a supplier of higher financial value may be more beneficial in the long run as a higher price usually means a more reliable and higher standard of service. Building strong relationships with your suppliers maintains communication and builds respect which in turn means you receive a better service. It is common to have more than one supplier of products as unforeseen circumstances can arise. Having a back-up is another layer of security and minimises disruption to your supply chain.
3. Outsourcing warehouse space and storage can help with growth whilst keeping the costs down. It prevents being held back by insufficient warehouse space and means there is no additional cost of finding a workspace big enough to house all stock.
4. Another tip is to invest in an ERP solution. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions provide your organisation with an automated system to assist business growth, allowing you to do more with fewer resources. An ERP system gives you the oversight to monitor stock, evaluate profit margins, and therefore only order stock when needed.
5. Quality control is essential to a strong supply chain. When receiving stock, it is important to thoroughly check it to ensure the quality is as expected. Inventory that isn’t checked and turns out to be faulty or of poor standard could damage your reputation with customers.
6. Microsoft Power BI is a unified, scalable platform for self-service and enterprise business intelligence. It connects and visualises any data and combines it with everyday apps. The platform can help visualise historical sales data to identify trends, make predictions and therefore plan the future. It highlights important insights and aids you in meeting demands. It will also highlight busy periods, enabling you to manage resources and stock accordingly.
7. Like any process, it is important to regularly review and update processes as there are many factors of change and there is always room for improvement.