An efficient supply chain is essential for getting your products to customers quickly. As your company’s needs develop, your supply chain strategy will also need to change to reflect that growth. Here are some top tips for supply chain management improvement.
1. Implement Automation
Implementing automated components in your supply chain strategy can lead to increased efficiency and cost reductions. For example, features such as automated purchasing include software that is programmed to automatically place an order when inventory falls below a certain level. This type of automation frees up employees to do other essential work and ensures your inventory levels are accurately maintained.
2. Increase Supply Chain Visibility
Supply chain visibility refers to your company’s ability to track all components of your product as they move through the chain on their way to your facility. When you give your suppliers the ability to check your inventory in real time, they can make adjustments and plan ahead to fulfill demand. You can also give your team access to inventory details so they can more effectively strategize and communicate.
3. Develop a Distribution Strategy
Developing a clear distribution strategy will help your company get your products where they need to go. A good distribution strategy will enable you to identify ways you can shorten delivery times, improve customer service and reduce loss to achieve profitable growth. As you plan a distribution strategy, set actionable goals and monitor things like cross-docks, customers, warehouses and other distribution segments to evaluate efficiency levels.
4. Collect Data
Your supply chain strategy should be based on timely data about your current supply chain management. To make informed decisions about how to improve your supply chain management, implement software that allows your team and your suppliers to access production, inventory and purchase data.
5. Improve Cost Awareness
Because there are so many variables along the supply chain, managers may not be aware of each other’s expenses. By providing everyone with financial data, you and your team will get the full picture of where and how your company is spending money. This financial transparency enables better communication and consolidation of expenses.
6. Enhance Returns Management
Many manufacturers focus on getting new products out in the marketplace, which often means that returns management falls by the wayside. But an efficient returns system will help you to reduce waste and identify consistent product issues for an overall stronger supply chain.
7. Analyze Vendor Performance
For your supply chain to run efficiently, you need excellent vendor performance. By keeping track of cycle times and error rates, you can effectively monitor each vendor. Having concrete vendor data is especially useful when it comes time to renegotiate contracts.
8. Create a Project Plan
Supply chain management is an ongoing process, which means you need a comprehensive project plan to help you reach your goals. A good project plan provides a framework for when and where to make investments in your supply chain and how you can best develop strategies, identify opportunities and risks, and establish improved communication throughout the chain.
9. Provide Incentives
Provide incentives to your supply chain network to get the most substantial value while eliminating the most risk. Evaluate your key performance indicators (KPIs) and set actionable benchmarks that will have a positive impact on your company’s bottom line.
10. Work With a Contract Manufacturer
Working with a reputable contract manufacturer will provide you with consistent, predictable product enable you to streamline your supply chain strategy for maximum productivity and efficiency. To get started with an experienced contract manufacturer, request a quote from PBZ Manufacturing today. PBZ has the engineers, equipment and ingenuity to reduce project completion times, minimize handling and logistics, and lower costs.