Do you know how today’s sophisticated technology has changed inventory management and how it is impacting business from supplier to warehouse to consumer?
According to Logistics Manager, “…retailers and manufacturers are increasingly seeing the supply chain as a source of competitive advantage. Inventory management now plays a huge role in harnessing that advantage.”
For example, years ago, the ability to know exactly where a product was in the supply chain was hard to know. With the demand for next day delivery on the rise, there’s no time to waste in hunting down an item. That means accuracy is crucial.
“We’ve got to be slick these days,” says Nigel Rouch, IT and project director at XPO Logistics. “Historically, the process took two, three, four weeks – now it’s got to be much slicker and quicker – you have to have the processes in place.” With heat map technology, “You can focus on where you dropped the last pallet…we now have more ability to know where the product is, and go and find it.”
Detailed traceability has become a crucial factor in supply chain inventory management. Mohit Dubey, senior director of product marketing at E2open says that the ability to track all levels of a transaction provides an actionable system…”relevant for all consumer facing industries…even high-tech and consumer packaged goods, where product defects can become health-and-safety issues for end consumers. This is a matter for the end-to-end supply chain, not just the logistics and material handling functions.”
Jason Shorrock, vice president of retail strategy at JDA, says, “ …companies are now aligning day-to-day inventory plans with top-level goals on an on-going basis, turning inventory management into a powerful strategic advantage in a challenging economic climate.”
Do you think it’s time to update your inventory management system?