For many businesses, achieving success relies on the performance of the supply chain, but as industries change and grow, some chief executive officers are having a difficult time keeping up. According to a survey by Hitachi Consulting, CEOs said that with 14 different supply chain priorities, improving them all and optimizing business effectiveness is difficult.
If maximizing business effectiveness is dependent on a strong supply chain, then leaders will need to work to identify the most critical areas that require improvement and begin implementing new procedures and technology.
"Management teams must give the required amount of attention to deliver on supply chain objectives," Jesper Jelmteg, senior vice president of the Industrial Sector at Hitachi Consulting, said in a press release. "They must step back, build the picture, align and prioritize their objectives and then deploy the appropriate change resource. Pursued diligently, activities such as supplier and customer collaboration, footprint optimization and the development of a more customer-centric supply chain model, all need significant resources."
Jelmteg goes on to explain that businesses need a clear roadmap in order to align communication at all levels of the enterprise, especially providing information that can be shared between the boardroom and the warehouse or factory floor.
Using Advanced Data Collection to Improve the Supply Chain
Increasing the collection of data in the warehouse is one way CEOs can develop a stronger link between the supply chain and enterprise planning. Harvesting information that can be used as key performance indicators can incorporate data that measures supply chain productivity into existing ERP systems. As CEOs continue to recognize the business value of their supply chains, they will need technology that can help prepare for significant changes in supply, demand and operations.
There is a number of tools that can help farm data from the shop floor and throughout the supply chain, such as barcode scanning software. New software provides real-time tracking information about products and orders. This information can be used to improve order forecasting, conduct a recall or determine the effectiveness of individual suppliers. With the right combination of advanced data collection solutions and the right ERP, information from multiple remote locations is provided to company leaders. This information aids CEOs in assigning a level of importance to supply chain priorities and reducing the disconnect that exists between a company's big-picture agenda and day-to-day operations.