Any industry sector that encompasses a huge supply footprint across a large cross-section of businesses within that sector is classified as a supply chain. A supply chain is a constantly moving and evolving network of supply and demand, a balancing act of many components for a common goal. That goal is to produce the best product in the best condition for the end consumer as efficiently as possible. What a mouthful! Supply chain management is an important part of the entire logistics of a business.
Let’s break it down into the 3 V’s:
- Velocity – The pace of doing business over time, which increases as improvements are made.
- Variability – The variables that create fluctuations over that period of time and affect the end result.
- Visibility – The ability to see the big picture and improve your velocity and stem your variability.
We need to expand on each of these concepts to really get to the heart of the matter, and why Accentis is as powerful as it is with supply chain management.
There are so many areas where velocity can be influenced, depending on where you are in the supply chain to factors that can seem our of your control. Cash flow is one of these areas, how long does it take your customers to pay your invoices? Conversely, you might have already paid for a product to be supplied and are being held up by delivery parameters. Velocity is influenced by processes that can all be controlled, if you know what you should be controlling. Accentis improves a business’ velocity by reducing inventory holding times, either in delivery or manufacturing methods. Our software enables methods such as Just-in-time delivery and Lean Manufacturing to improve business efficiency and overall return on investment.
Forces within and externally can affect how the business can manage production and profit, for losses and gains. Improving on the gains and minimising the losses is the only way to regain control, thus enhancing the business as a whole. No business has a zero variability factor, because you just don’t know what’s going to happen and when. But what you can do is control it as best as possible by limiting fluctuations based on your expected averages. For businesses who are just starting up, it’s all new data and they need to be able to pivot as challenges crop up. Businesses who have experienced variability would already have yield data on if the weather has effected crop sales, or a supplier has been unable to supply fittings you need for a project. Minimising the effects of all these variables is important, as it saves time and money.
How do you know what stock you need to propagate a plant from seed through to supplying pallets of that same plant in 6 months’ time to multiple sales outlets? Visibility. Some small businesses can probably guess and would know their business effectively close enough to do checks and balances week to week. But is that enough? What if something has gone wrong with a supplier, or a staff member is sick, halting production? You need to be able to, at any time, view a report on the process to see exactly what the holdup is, and get it sorted. This is a variable that we were talking about before, however, because the data is right there, you can see where the issue is, take action and minimise it. To act you need to be able to see. It’s just not possible to always go and view each issue in location, especially when a report can give that to you instantly. Not only do you get to see what is happening right now, but you can easily look back to the past, and look to the future by forecasting results. If you really want to know where Accentis is in a league of its own, it’s right here!
It all boils down to a simple message. If you can see what is going on (Visibiltiy), you can improve on it (Variability), and gain better results (Velocity). The 3 V’s of the supply chain network really are an important factor that can’t be ignored, and if nurtured, will help to improve. Accentis will improve the 3 V’s in your business, giving you the flexibility to understand it more completely. We’ll be the first to admit we’re not the experts at your business and knowing how it runs, you are. We are the experts at presenting your data and processes to you though, so you can keep doing just that, only better! Want to know more? Find out here! Supply chain management is something that needs to be worked at, and we can help.