- Enhance visibility
Supply chain visibility is among the key components driving the adoption of technology on a massive scale. Having visibility all through the supply chain, from acquiring raw materials to delivering a final product from a warehouse to the customer, is a game-changer. Regardless of the type of product you are dealing with, be it a car or a medical device, visibility is important for both the company and the retailers. Although visibility is not a new concept, its importance has increased over the years with the changes in customer demands. As technology evolves, it has become easier to ensure visibility than years ago. Ensure that the pipeline is transparent and keep talking to the customer all through. Visibility enhances trust and transparency, which are good for communication with the customers. With the importance of the supply chain to businesses, a simple breakdown of communication at any point can be a disaster.
- Ensure security
Supply chains have over the recent years been a target of cybercriminals, both state-sponsored for espionage or those doing it for their personal gain. Sadly, despite the rising number of such attacks, most supply chain partners and vendors lack adequate policies to counter them. You should always try to be collaborative and enter alliances that will allow a collaborative fight against cybercrime. Communicate with your partners and make policies to ensure that everyone in the supply chain network is secure. Any weak link in the network can expose everyone, including the customers.
- Get the services of a CIO
IT teams used to run the show when it came to the implementation of different IT-related strategies in the organization. However, there was no IT personnel on the board of most organizations. In the age of information, you will not be successful unless you have a CIO in the leadership and in the team that leads the transformation project of your organization. Furthermore, you should not think that the supply chain is all about cutting costs. Rather, invest in the necessary infrastructure and people to get the job done with the necessary efficiency.
- Develop an outside-in supply chain
An outside-in supply chain entails using data to look at the needs of the consumers and forecast the customer demand. This is opposed to an inside-out supply chain, which is creating a product and hoping that it is accepted in the market. With digital media, people often discuss products on social media, which is a great source of information for the supply chain service providers and retailers. There is also sophisticated analytics that can predict consumer preferences. Through sophisticated analytics and customer data, supply chain companies can know the products and services that are good for them and where they are instead of letting the customer find them. Taking the example of Amazon and Apple, they let the customers know about their products before they are launched and when they are launching.
Develop a strong supplier council
The importance of communication cannot be overstated in the supply chain. Therefore, you need to have a strong supplier council because this is a good thing for transparency and visibility. A supplier council is a forum that allows a two-way dialogue about the processes, plans and necessary changes in the organization.