Visibility is extremely important when it comes to having an efficient and productive supply chain. It’s the ability for every member of the supply chain to be able to successfully monitor and track the process of goods being delivered to the customer. Having supply chain visibility allows for fewer disruptions, increased communication, better customer service and lower costs among other benefits. Considering how complex modern supply chains have become, having visibility within your company, as well as supply chain partners can help to simplify the process and ultimately increase profit margins.
To achieve visibility amongst members of your supply chain requires the use of cloud-software technology and analytics.
How can supply chain analytics can help increase visibility?
Identifying Pain Points
The best way to have strong visibility of your entire supply chain is to be able to identify the weakest links within it. A strong analytics platform can help you to identify areas of your supply chain that need improvement. Common pain points may include excess obsolete inventory, uncertainty of demand or the tendency to be reactive to unplanned events rather than proactive. If for example you have obsolete inventory and struggle with inventory write-offs, a good analytics platform will not only show you that it’s a problem but tell you the “why” behind it. Analytics will also allow you to compare the severity of issues against one another to find out which issues are most pressing and have to be prioritized.
Improved Decision Making
Supply chain analytics platforms such as The Owl not only gives you KPIs, but highlight weaknesses in your supply chain. This will allow you to prioritize which parts of your supply chain you’d like to take action to improve. Through manual processes such as supply chain spreadsheets, companies aren’t able to be certain about decisions they make since they don’t know whether or not their data is accurate. Analytics moves away from the guesswork done through spreadsheets by helping to make decisions with certainty, and reduce the risks that may come with those decisions. Forecasts done in data analytics that are based on past trends also allow you to make decisions about the future.
The use of supply chain KPIs and metrics within a comprehensive supply chain analytics platform such as The Owl can allow you to actually predict relevant data. For example, analytics can allow you to predict the estimated delivery time for certain shipments based on data and past trends. Being able to accurately forecast relevant information such as this will help you to make better decisions by having a clearer picture of your supply chain operations. Also, it will improve your customer service by helping you to deliver forecasted information to customers such as the status of their delivery.
Another important way in which forecasting is used is during demand planning. Accurate forecasting through analytics can help you to accurately predict demand and make sure your company has enough inventory to satisfy the estimated demand for its products. It can also allow you to pick up on changes in demand throughout the year based on seasonal factors. Overall, being able to predict future supply chain problems helps you to be able to prepare and navigate through those challenges.
Supply chain visibility among all members of the supply chain network using analytics allows for improved communication among then entire network. To have an efficient supply chain requires good communication between all parties. For instance, a delivery of raw materials may be going out later to the manufacturer. Having supply chain visibility using analytics will give the manufacturer this data beforehand so that they can prepare for the late delivery.
Improved communication among members of your supply chain network also allows for better relationships between all parties. As a manufacturer for instance, having visibility through data analytics can help to facilitate communication to help nurture supplier relationships.
Real-Time Supply Chain KPIs and Metrics
Certain platforms such as The Owl allow access to real-time supply chain KPIs on demand. The main problem that people seem to have with on-site solutions or the majority of supply chain solutions on the market is that they are difficult to access. With on-site solutions, the problem is obvious as it requires workers to be at a certain facility in order to access the information they need. Also, only one part of the supply chain network can access this information as opposed to cloud-based solutions that allow for everyone to have access. Other software solutions mostly don’t offer real-time metrics, meaning that you won’t know whether the information you are currently looking at is accurate as it may need to be updated. With real-time analytics, every part of your supply chain network can easily access information and be confident that the information that you are looking at is up-to-date.
Improve Supply Chain Visibility Through The Owl
Our supply chain analytics platform will help you achieve all of the goals above so that you can have perfect visibility of your supply chain. The Owl can help to improve your visibility in every area of the supply chain including procurement, demand planning, customer service, logistics, inventory management, production and more.
If you are ready to increase your supply chain visibility and profit margins, click below to book a demo. Or, see if we are a right fit for you by speaking to an expert.