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Question 4.


Benefits of Supply Chain Management System

Supply chain management can bring immense changes in your business scope & progress. I have
gathered top most amazing top 5 benefits of supply chain management software that will double
your business. Due the complexity of Supply chain management, by using it in right can make great
efficiency in your business as well as in your cost saving process. The lists of top 5 benefits of
supply chain management software are:

Higher Efficiency Rate


Reduce Cost Effects


Raise Output


Raised Your Business Profit Level


Boost Cooperation


Lowers Delay in Processes


Enhanced Supply Chain Network

Supply chain management software can make remarkable changes for any organization. It gives
smoothed execution to all tasks in order to achieve long-term profitability in a solid way. Most of the
time supply chain management flows is divided into 3 basic flows that are:

The Product Flow

The Information Flow

The Finances Flow

Therefore most of the organizations are switching to adapting such new innovations as per
marketing trends. The implementation and purchasing of supply chain management can bring some
key benefits that SCM convey. Let discuss each of top 5 benefits of supply chain management
software one by one.

1. Reduce Cost Effects

There are number of ways according to which, supply chain management software can lower down
the current overhead expenses of your organization. For example:

Improves inventory management system

Facilitates successful implementation of inventory system

Eliminates damage resources by adjusting the storage space efficiently of finished goods.

Make your system more responsive, you can easily achieve your goals by examining
customers requirements.

Stronger your relationship with vendors & distributers.

2. Raise Output
Supply chain management (SCM) software is designed in way to improve
communication, collaboration and coordination with vendors, transportation and
shipping companies, Suppliers and raise bi-directional information flow. The streamline
& centralized distribution strategy of supply chain management software make it more
reliable for end users and give more accurate output results.

3. Raised Your Business Profit Level

The most stunning feature of SCM software out of top 10 benefits of supply chain
management is raise in your business profit level. Welcoming behavior towards new
innovative technologies flourishes new ways of success for your organization.
Higher visibility and improved collaboration features ultimately because a cause of raise
your organizational output. Top hat will eventually raise your companys economical

4. Boost Cooperation Level

The most astonishing feature of supply chain management software is higher
cooperation level within the organizational task. Supply chain management software
give you access to track what your supplier and distributers are doing all the times and
vice versa.
Supply chain management linked up all the business software systems at remote
location that automatically improved collaboration in all partners. SCM software gives
opportunity to share information. Share information platform keep stakeholders
informed, so the whole process of SCM runs smoothly. These collaborations
accelerates other tasks like reporting, forecasts, order statuses, quotation and other
transportations plans in real time.

5. Lowers Time Delay in Processes

Top 5 benefits of Supply Chain Management software is minimized delay in tasks.
Delays in SCM often leads to poor relationships with stakeholders and loss of business.
All common issues like Late shipments from vendors, hold-ups on production lines, and

logistical errors in distribution channels are can negatively impact a companys ability to
gratify customers demand for products. SCM softwares all activities can be flawlessly
coordinated and executed from start to finish, to make sure much higher levels of ontime delivery across the board.
Challenges of SCM Systems
Supply chain managers have seen increasing challenges to create, and keep, efficient
and effective supply chain methods. Here the biggest supply chain challenges.

Customer service - Supply chain management is all about providing the right
product in the right quantity to the right place and the right time. Seems simple,
but can get complicated quickly.

Cost control - Operating costs are under extreme pressure by rising energy/fuel
and freight costs, greater number of global customers, technology, increasing
labor rates and new regulations and rising commodity prices.

Planning & risk management - In order to stay as efficient and effective as

possible, periodic assessments and redesigns are needed. These adjustments
are in response to changes in the market - changes such as new product
launches, global sourcing, credit availability and the need to protect intellectual
property. These risks must be identified and quantified in order to control and

Supplier/partner relationship management - It is important to create,

understand and follow mutually agreed upon standards to better understand
current performance and opportunities for improvement. Having two different
methods for measuring and communicating performance and results wastes time
and effort. Trust the system that was put in place for consistent results and better
supplier/partner relationships.

In the end we can conclude that there are huge numbers of benefits of supply chain management
software. The primary job of Solution Dots Supply chain management software is centralizing all the
information about a companys supply chain process.
Supply Chain Management (SCM) software can offer tremendous value to any company that relies on the smooth
planning and execution of related operations to achieve long-term profitability and maintain a solid competitive edge.
Thats why more and more organizations are purchasing and implementing supply chain applications. Here are some
of the key benefits that SCM software delivers:
Improved Supply Chain Network
Supply chain management software provides complete, 360-degree visibility across the entire supply chain network.
It allows users to monitor the status of all activities across all suppliers, production plants, storage facilities, and
distribution centers. This enables more effective tracking and management of all related processes, from the ordering
and acquisition of raw materials, to manufacturing and shipping of finished goods to customers or retail outlets. The
status of mission-critical activities can be tracked at all times, and potential inefficiencies or problems can be
identified and corrected immediately, before they become unmanageable.
Minimized Delays
Many supply chains particularly those that havent been enhanced with a supply chain application are plagued by
delays that can result in poor relationships and lost business. Late shipments from vendors, hold-ups on production
lines, and logistical errors in distribution channels are all common issues that can negatively impact a companys
ability to satisfy customer demand for its products. With SCM software, all activities can be seamlessly coordinated
and executed from start to finish, ensuring much higher levels of on-time delivery across the board.
Enhanced Collaboration
Imagine having the ability to know exactly what your suppliers and distributors are doing at all times and vice versa.
SCM software makes that possible by bridging the gap between disparate business software systems at remote
locations to dramatically improve collaboration among supply chain partners. With SCM software, all participants can
dynamically share vital information such as demand trend reports, forecasts, inventory levels, order statuses, and
transportation plans in real-time. This type of instantaneous, unhindered communication and data-sharing will help
keep all key stakeholders informed, so that supply chain processes can run as smoothly as possible.
Reduced Costs
Supply Chain Management software can help reduce overhead expenses in a variety of ways. It can, for example:

Improve inventory management, facilitating the successful implementation of just-in-time

stock models and eliminating the strain on real estate and financial resources incurred by the
storage of excess components and finished goods

Enable more effective demand planning, so production output levels can be set to most
effectively address customer requirements without the shortages that result in lost sales or
wastes that drain budgets

Improve relationships with vendors and distributors, so that purchasing and logistics
professionals can identify cost-cutting opportunities such as volume discounts
Current supply chains are growing in complexity due to several factors. We, the customers, are
demanding innovative products at the right time and at a reasonable price. This creates
challenges for companies since creating both responsive and cost-effective supply chains is
critically difficult. I find these challenges exciting and thats why I decided to pursue a career in
the field. Let me expand on todays main supply chain challenges.

One of the biggest challenges that companies are facing is how to reduce their supply chain cost.
In order to satisfy customers price expectations, companies have opted to relocate
manufacturing to low cost countries around the world in an effort to reduce direct and indirect
costs and to minimize taxes. But, having global suppliers contributes significantly to complexity
that comes from extended delivery lead times. Customers not only want lower prices, but they
also want their products on time.

Customer Preferences
As stated above, global supply chains are complex. Add to that product features that are
constantly changing, and the challenge is even greater. A product is released and customers
rapidly pressure companies to come up with the next big thing. Innovation is important since it
allows companies to stay competitive in the market, but its also a challenge. To enhance a
product, companies have to redesign their supply network and meet market demand in a way
thats transparent for customers.



Another factor that presents a challenge is the pursuit of new customers. The cost of a
developing a product, from R&D to product introduction, is significant. Therefore,
companies are trying to expand their distribution to emerging markets in order to grow
revenues and increase market share. Companies all around the world are expected to
expand in their home and foreign markets. The introduction to new markets is difficult
due to trading policies, fees, and government policies.

Customers expectations nowadays are more demanding than ever. As described here,
companies have responded with global networks, product innovation, and market
expansions. This means that companies now rely on supply chain managers to optimize
their value chains in order to stay competitive. As such, its no surprise that these
professionals are in high demand. So customers, rest assured - experts in supply chain
management, including our own Grainger Center graduates - are behind the scenes
tackling these complexities each and every day and are eager to delight the customer

Question 4.2

Three Steps To Improving Supply Chain Management

Wed, 04/06/2011 - 11:52amby Bobby Kaemmer, Vice President of Cadre Technologies
By Bobby Kaemmer, Vice President of Cadre



In the past decade, volumes have been written about the value of supply chain
visibility and execution systems. Its hard to argue with the concept. When
everyones systems are working together to fulfill orders perfectly, execute on-time
shipments, and provide early alerts to problems, life is good.

But creating a perfectly meshed supply chain is easier said than done. Very few
supply chain communities are made up entirely of companies with best-in-class
supply chain applications. The strategic investment required to integrate diverse
systems and scattered data resources while developing the necessary technical
expertise can be daunting.
Enabling collaboration, preserving system and data integrity, and ensuring security
are critical. Most distribution center and warehousing solutions are deployed inhouse, close to the activities and people they support. While that makes complete
sense for operations on the ground, an in-house system can impede collaboration
when multiple supply chain participants are involved. To serve the multitudes of
potential participants, a more flexible and accessible solution is required.
To fill this gap, many companies have turned to on-demand supply chain solutions.
By outsourcing to a Cloud-based supply chain vendor, companies can realize a long
list of benefits, including lower up-front costs, faster implementation time, and
immediate connection with new or existing communities of trading partners.
But before implementing an on-demand system, three critical steps must be taken.
Step 1. Overcome diverse technical competencies between participants in
a supply chain community.
Problem: Its rare that a single operator can own all or even most of the processes
between the client and the retailer or end-customer. Even the simplest operations
may engage dozens of providers, and suppliers and each client (supply chain) can
represent a different group of players with different needs.
Perhaps the greatest challenge is that most IT departments have their hands full
managing internal systems, with little time or expertise to spare for the
complexities of supply chain management. That makes implementing collaboration
and visibility tools from the ground up an overwhelming challenge. The time and
capital required to acquire and implement systems are expensive and long-term.
Finding an experienced staff is even more of a challenge. Therefore, electronic
interaction and online execution is typically reserved for clients who demand it, if
they are provided at all.
Solution: Cloud solutions enable broader adoption of these typically sophisticated
capabilities. By providing a hardware and software platform in conjunction with a
technical staff with deep domain experience, the time and expense of selecting,
buying, training and implementing are greatly reduced.
While overcoming these diverse technical competencies can be challenging, the
benefits are significant. When logistics enterprises can establish electronic links in
the supply chain, a magnetic IT bond is formed that extends a companys reach
both technically and operationally.
Finally, because Cloud solutions become an extension of existing business systems,

they typically deliver a much faster return on investment and create economies of
scale moving forward.
Step 2. Perform logistics activities in a connected supply chain.
Problem: No enterprise can afford to bear the costs of inefficient supply chain
arrangements. Efficiency of supply chains is ensured by paying close attention to
selecting the right indices that reflect the health of business operations. In the end,
the logistics provider remains responsible for execution. That entails knowing what
to do, what is expected and when to do it. Visibility simply isnt possible until a
supply chain works.
Solution: The starting point for efficiency is creating the informational and
operational processes necessary to execute orders, shipments, receipts and
payments. Mapping the various documents traded by the different participants to
execute transactions is a challenge that can be met with a well-managed system.
Setting up the system so that each transaction adheres to business rules is an even
more critical challenge that must be addressed.
The system should keep precise track of each stock-keeping unit so that inventory
replenishment is facilitated, inactive inventory and retail handling expenses are
reduced, stock-outs are minimized, and performance cycle times are optimized. By
meeting the demands of a constantly changing business environment, logistics
enterprises enhance their value to both clients and partners.
Step 3. Analyze and monitor supply chain data through dashboards and
visibility tools.
Problem: Without solid, well-thought-out business rules to manage the
relationships among systems, inefficiency is certain, and logistical chaos may result.
Business rules are essential for more accurate assessments when monitoring
activity and inventory, measuring efficiencies, ensuring proper alignment of
resources and applying performance metrics.
Solution: Progressive supply chain management enterprises provide exception
alerts, shipment and order status visibility, performance dashboards and flexible
reporting. Once established, these analytic and performance monitoring tools
enable the exploration and analysis of supply chain data from nearly any
perspective. Dashboards can be configured to provide periodic, scheduled analysis
of current supply chain status, including on-time shipment, short order reports,
inventory turns and more.
Visibility is an invaluable byproduct of supply chain partner collaboration. As
logistics companies become more sophisticated in their use of powerful supply chain
technologies, visibility becomes another demonstrable value.

A collaborative logistics technology gap exists because of the cost and complexity of
integrating disparate systems among companies at all levels in the supply chain. In
an industry based primarily on physical movement of inventory, information is a
powerful dimension that these companies should fully employ to gain a distinct
advantage by coupling the necessary inventory and operational processes with
customer service, order entry and financial management processes.