When it comes down to choosing supply chain management best practices, the first thing a company must do is to define what works for itself. By simply discovering the best practices for its own structure, a business specialized in a particular industry sector is able to work smarter, not harder, and get incredible results.
These days, more and more businesspeople talk about the best practices in supply chain management. Unfortunately, the vast majority of these people have no idea what these practices actually imply. To clarify one critical point, a business owner must know that these practices actually revolve around developing an effective supply chain management system that allows businesses to remain competitive in a challenging market.
Evidently, to improve their supply chain management systems and get impressive results, business owners must understand how to identify certain practices. Additionally, it’s very important for all businesspeople to integrate the practices they choose into their business as quickly as possible.
One of the most essential points a business person should bear in mind is that these practices must come along with a very important characteristic: customization. By simply choosing to integrate customizable practices, a business can develop multiple supply chain system variations that directly address different situations.
To help businesspeople choose the right practices for their businesses, supply chain management specialists have divided them into three main groups: technology, performance and manufacturing.
- Technology Best Practices: Before attempting to implement specific technology best practices, business owners must define their key processes and mission-critical functions. This means that manufacturers and distributors should have a clear picture of the technologies they must use to meet their customer expectations. For instance, using advanced technology tools that make real-time inventory tracking and data analysis possible, a business can meet the needs and demands of all its customers.
- Performance Best Practices: In general, business performance relates to the capability of a company to provide its customers differentiation thorough value-added services and product customization. This indirectly means that business performance links to flexibility. Being able to adjust operations based on specific criteria, such as customer demands and productivity, is very important. Similarly, a businessperson who intends to increase supply chain performance must find a way to develop a system that does exactly what customers expect.
- Manufacturing Best Practices: The best practices in manufacturing focus on helping businesses manage specific distribution and manufacturing scenarios, while minimizing touch labor. To facilitate the reconfiguration of different operations with minimum effort, experts propose particular advancements in manufacturing, such as the integration of high performance computing, advanced robotics, new industrial platform technologies, automation, custom manufacturing and control systems to monitor processes.
Despite general belief, the expression “best practices” doesn’t necessarily relate to getting the latest products, reducing distribution outage time and cost, or doing what competitors did last year. The aforementioned points clearly indicate that the best practices in supply chain management link to understanding operations thoroughly and opting for the most appropriate solutions that business owners, including manufacturers and distributors, can use to meet customer expectations and get the best return on investment.