Few industries boast supply chains equal in complexity to those in the manufacturing sector, yet the industry as a whole has been slow to apply the power of data to daily operations. This leaves companies of all sizes poised to implement a timely and nearly fail-safe opportunity to achieve cost-savings and revenue growth.
By Jeff Eiben, Principal Owner, River Point Technology
Backed by facts
Above the industry average in revenue growth and earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT): According to a Deloitte study1 of 400 company executives, this highly coveted designation is achieved by approximately 75 percent of organizations deemed to have superior supply chain capabilities, as compared to fewer than 10 percent of companies whose supply chains are performing at less than an optimal level. Based on those findings, it’s a safe bet that an investment in a data-compliant IT architecture and supply chain optimization will be a winning decision in 2017.
Silos and stagnant data
Decision makers are most effective when they are equipped with a comprehensive and accurate set of data. Access to sufficient data is not the problem. In fact, the sources seem limitless: orders, shipments, inventory, sales, invoicing, transportation, assets, downtime, staffing, salaries and nearly every other aspect of daily operations. Unfortunately, many companies are operating in the realm of disjointed business systems, scattered data storage and archaic recordkeeping. Without a central repository, data trickles in from one departmental silo at a time. Some data will be lost
along the way and even more will arrive in a variety of formats that make unified reporting impossible. Plus, a percentage of the compiled data will be outdated before it ever reaches the desks of decision makers. This incomplete and stagnant picture does little to help companies evaluate their risks and opportunities.
Consolidation and real-time data
Consolidation immediately enhances the organization and security of data, but its value extends much further into the role of supply chain optimization. Instead of viewing one supply chain link independent of all others, data consolidation provides insight into how the performance of one link impacts the performance of others. A robust collection of data can be analyzed in multiple ways, so that every “if this, then that” scenario can be considered. In turn, this vast amount of business intelligence can contribute significantly to informed decisions, operational efficiencies and enhanced fiscal
management. This level of business intelligence is in itself a virtual return on investment.