Supply chain management is a complex process, which, only a dozen or so years ago, was an abstract and almost immeasurable concept. Today, it is based on information obtained at the right time. It is thanks to this information that we will be sure of the proper flow of goods and money. I’m talking about the acquisition of basic data, which concerns both the phases of the supply chain themselves and the participants who make up the chain. Without knowledge of this subject, management of the heart of the company’s operational activities is doomed to failure. Proper organisation of this process guarantees an increased level of customer service by providing the right products at the right time and the right place, which translates into increased profits for the company. You find out who needs a given product and when, thus, minimising losses.
The division of roles in the supply chain
How can a logistics operator help to gain a competitive advantage in an era of globalisation and increasing competition? Not only through support in supply chain management but more importantly, through helping to make the whole process transparent. This is not an easy task considering the amount of information that we (supply chain participants) process every day. Hence the questions: how to efficiently influence the reaction time of the market that surrounds us? How to properly filter and transmit information from the logistics operator to the customer in order to improve the business’ effectiveness and efficiency of his/her company? The role of a logistics operator in the entire supply chain is to find the answers to these questions, as well as to provide the most complete and appropriately selected information which, in turn, will translate into building an effective process. Nevertheless, this element is very important, so, while searching for appropriate solutions, we have strived to prepare such an improvement that would enable making the right decisions in the shortest possible time – an improvement that is crucial for both us and our customers.
Control over information – process control
The management of a modern supply chain is mainly characterised by the short reaction time, flexibility and the ability to make optimal use of all available information. Modern technologies are gaining more and more importance in the area of information management, at the same time leading to the transformation of business processes and management structures. Many participants in very different markets (from mining to retail) base their activities on building digital control towers that ensure real-time visibility of supply chains. The Era of Big Data, only a few years ago predicted as ‘visionary’, has today become a reality before our eyes – the information revolution is taking place right now and concerns the use of diverse, advanced methods and models of data analysis to identify interdependencies and predict future phenomena in management in order to make the best decisions. It is also a technological evolution of what we know as business intelligence and data management. Current businesses, to a varying degree, use the potential of digital technologies as sources of information and transform supply chains on their own basis and should focus their attention on this element. It is crucial for building competitiveness in what is a difficult market.
Information management tool
Following the ever-changing world and understanding the need for the introduction of digital technology at our customers’ companies, we have built a system that acts as a digital control tower. Ligentix, which allows to monitor orders in realtime, was developed in the UK in the 90s. It is a tool that can be freely adapted to any company’s supply chain requirements. Sector, territory or operational requirements are no obstacle in this case. Thanks to our flexibility and continuous improvement in the cooperation with our customers, we have built a platform that is easy to use and above all, provides insight into appropriately structured information which is key to the given process. Currently, the system connects the manufacturer, logistics service providers and the customer. However, we do not stop in our efforts aimed at the highest control of the supply chain part entrusted to us. Due to the ever-growing needs of both the market and our customers, the system will be extended to include (and not limited to) companies that deal in quality control. It is this combination of all these elements into one coherent whole – where the central point is the order placed by our client – that enables a significant improvement in the visibility of the entire chain and therefore, a positive impact on business agility. With fast and accurate reporting to support the customer’s purchasing and operational decisions as well as full control of the milestones of the established process that are tailored to the requirements of the user group, our customers are able to streamline processes, reduce costs and define bottlenecks before they affect the company’s productiveness or performance.
In order to make an information evolution in the supply chain, you need to trust experts – not only will they observe the supply chain and continuously look for the weakest links that need improving but they will also help you flexibly adapt to market trends so as to optimise the process for the emerging needs and changes. They will equip you with tools that will allow insight into business and improve its management. For this evolution to happen, you will need the right mindset and understanding of how big a role in profit growth is played by efficient supply chains and the relevant logistics solutions tailored to them.