Supply chain management gaps hold wholesale distribution companies back from really managing their business effectively.

A more integrated supply chain management strategy, however, helps you anticipate otherwise unforeseen issues, work around them in the moment and then fix them for the future.

The best supply chain management software combines two sides of supply chain management: planning and execution. Through complex algorithms, planning applications fill orders in the best way possible, while execution applications track the entire supply chain from materials to the financial details of all involved parties.

What are you doing to create a more accurate picture of your supply chain and establish more efficient practices?

Today’s Biggest Supply Chain Management Issues

Below are a few issues impacting supply chain management in wholesale distributors today:

Product Complexity: With large warehouses and thousands of SKUs, how quickly are you targeting and removing underperforming products? There are better supply chain management practices for controlling the growth of SKUs. But, the larger and more complex your company becomes, the more important it is to have SKU and product information readily accessible in real time.

Slow-Moving And/Or Obsolete Inventory: How do you know when to drop the price on slow-moving inventory and incentivize buying? How do you when to dispose of obsolete inventory? Product complexity only adds to the confusion of accurately handling your stock. When you’re looking to adjust prices to move products, you need to justify a drop with recorded, actionable data of sitting inventory.

Supply-Demand Disconnect: With disparate technologies and siloed departments come inaccurate insights. In order for departments to meet objectives (that often conflict) while advancing the company mission, metrics need to be aligned across sales and operations. Without the proper flow of data between these two departments, supply and demand issues only persist.

Focus On Process Before Software

Before pursuing a supply chain management software solution, you need to improve your company’s processes to increase efficiencies and reduce costs immediately.

Consider the following tips for assessing the quality of your supply chain while laying the foundation for a move to an improved software solution:

  • Identify bottlenecks and create a correction plan.
  • Evaluate options for improvements and calculate a return on investment.
  • Target KIPs for process improvement initiatives.
  • Implement improvements – both through process tweaks and new technology – and best practices.
  • Reevaluate the state of the supply chain based on new KPIs.
  • Establish a new baseline for supply chain efficiencies.

Better Supply Chain Management Through Integration

Through better supply chain management practices and a software solution tweaked to support them, your business stands to benefit from:

  • Effective demand planning and forecasting
  • Improved customer retention
  • Clearer actionable data for making informed business decisions
  • Larger profit margins
  • Increased inventory turns

It all begins with better processes. Then, integrate all of those influencing supply chain management through a software solution, and start returning value to your company, your customers and your suppliers.