One of the key reasons many of our clients implement supply chain management software is because it provides more transparency to far-flung global operations. In today’s evolving and turbulent economy, it is becoming more important for companies to effectively manage and adjust their supply chains in response to rapid changes in the economy.
So what is the best way to find the right supply chain management software for your organization? Below are four areas to consider when evaluating potential supply chain management or enterprise software solutions:
- Robust demand planning and forecasting. You may have the most effective procurement and transportation processes in the world, but it won’t matter if you aren’t forecasting the right volume and timing for the product you are purchasing. Not all ERP or enterprise software solutions can handle complex planning and forecasting without some type of third-party bolt-on, so it is important to carefully evaluate the planning capabilities of your prospective software vendors.
- Streamlined procurement processes. Most of our clients are working with higher volumes of contract manufacturers outside of their home country, which adds to the potential complexity and transparency of procurements processes. When evaluating potential software vendors, it is important to understand the ability to automatically create purchase orders based on projections, streamline the transmittal of POs to vendors, and access the status of purchase orders in real-time.
- Integrated transportation management and logistics. With the continuing trend toward outsourcing manufacturing to overseas countries, it can be difficult to manage lead times and keep tabs on shipments. Whether your products are in containers on the water, in transit via a domestic freight carrier, or still sitting on the dock at your vendor’s warehouse; it is important to know the status of the products to manage your supply chain effectively.
- Advanced pick, pack, and ship warehouse management system (WMS) functionality. Once the products are in your warehouse, it is important to have efficient processes to pick, pack, and ship orders to your customers. Different software solutions handle inventory management and order processing functions very differently, so it is important to find the right fit for your warehouse management needs.
These four areas tend to be key competitive advantages for successful companies and differentiators between potential supply chain management solutions. It is important to evaluate each of these areas as part of your software selection process. Learn more about potential supply chain management software options by viewing our lists of enterprise software solutions.