The Internet of Things and Amazon have caused many companies to review their fulfillment procedures and reflect on just how much visibility their supply chains have. To keep up with customer demands and expectations, businesses must evolve their supply chains. Incorporating new tech and improving supply chain visibility is central to that task.
So, what is supply chain visibility? It’s the ability to track parts, components, and products from the manufacturer to its final destination. In its best version, it also seamlessly responds to change in demand. In addition to recording where products are sent, it also provides extremely valuable data, which is used for customer support, improving processes, and eliminating redundancies.
Smart businesses partner with 3PLs for this exact reason. A quality 3PL offers real-time data and expertise in supply chain management, which means lots of benefits for your business. According to Jeff Dobbs, Global Sector Chair of Diversified Industrials, “obtaining real-time visibility across all tiers in the supply chain can significantly increase speed to market, reduce capital expenditures and manage risk…moving toward a demand-driven supply chain is probably the single most important step a global manufacturer can take today.” Here are a few reasons why this is true.
One of the most immediate benefits of supply chain visibility is that it delivers real-time data so you can track your product at each stage. Companies can use it to understand lifecycles, inventory needs, and critical metrics better to create alerts and respond quickly to potential issues. According to a study by Supply Chain Insights LLC, 70 percent of companies with supply chain visibility saw a return on investment in 13 short months!
Risk is something no business wants in their supply chain. With visibility, you can identify risks before they become an issue. Inventory risks are reduced with supply chain visibility. Also, if there is a risk with one of your partner companies, an often-late supplier for instance, supply chain visibility will help you identify it. You can then proactively deal with the issue before it becomes a problem by evaluating the trends and sourcing for new suppliers who can make deliveries on time, therefore stabilizing inventory. Reducing risks like these saves your business money, brand loyalty, and time.
Think about what you expect as a customer. Most likely your list includes timely and correct deliveries. As we have seen over the last few years, customers also want shorter delivery times. To meet those demands, a system with transparency allows you to track your supply chain and flow of goods easily to ensure customer satisfaction. Goods are tracked at every part of the process, and if there is an issue, such as a weather delay, you can contact a customer in advance—now that’s quality control!
Improved Lead Times
Nothing makes a customer happy like ordering a product at 12 p.m. and seeing it ship out before the end of the day. With supply chain visibility, that can be a reality for your business. Since you have all the data you need for inventory and process management, you know you’ve analyzed all unnecessary touches out the chain, and this results in less time orders wait to be filled and more product leaving the building. Hence, many happy customers singing your praises!
Many companies turn to the supply chain experts for their fulfillment needs. By partnering with a company like JIT Services, you know you’ll benefit from all supply chain visibility has to offer. By doing so, you get industry experience and best practices from people who have made it their life’s work. With supply chain visibility, you get real-time information empowering you to solve problems before they happen instead of after.