The world’s longest turnaround times for processing shipping containers and the Omicron variant’s effect on Chinese manufacturing and logistical capacity has thrown Britain into a new supply chain crisis, according to iNews.
Coming on the back of issues such as a shortage of lorry drivers and Brexit-related complications, the renewed crisis can wreak havoc on productivity, but that doesn’t mean your only option is to sit back and watch while your business flounders instead of thriving. You can boost productivity through better supply chain management.
When it comes to your SME’s supply chain, there always will be factors that are beyond your control. That said, there are some factors that you can do something about. Keep reading to find out what you can do.
Adjust Your Inventory Size To Improve Supply Chain Management
According to FourKites, if you have high inventory levels, you’re looking at high direct materials costs as well as higher carrying and warehousing costs. Adjust the size of your inventory to the minimum you need to maintain a good level of service. It’s understandable that you might want to hold excess safety stock to meet customer demand but adopting new technology can help you get around that.
Use real-time transportation visibility offered by your logistics partner to keep an eye on where your products are, to detect bottlenecks, and to increase inventory efficiency. Looking at the future of freight, things are set to get more interesting. For example, the rail industry’s move toward automation (driverless trains) and faster speeds should result in greater efficiency when ordering stock from your suppliers.
Boost Labour Efficiency
Better labour efficiency is a key element of boosting productivity through better supply chain management. Use real-time supply chain visibility to reduce the time your employees waste across operations. When you know what time lorries are due to arrive, you can make sure the relevant employees are at the loading dock, reception area, or warehouse.
You can also ensure your other staff are engaged in tasks that add value to your business, and that they’re ready to spring into action when your new stock is ready for the sales floor. Likewise, what type of cargo you use can also help improve employee productivity and supply management. For instance, using Air freight can help lower the transportation time leading to better management. If you wish to learn more, Click here and enlighten yourself.
Communicate And Collaborate
Your employees are an essential part of your supply chain, even if they are the last few cogs in that wheel. Armed with real-time supply chain data, you are in an excellent position to communicate and collaborate with your employees. Schedule daily and weekly meetings to keep them informed about stock and the supply chain. If the data from your logistics partners indicates a delay, collaborate with your employees to find potential solutions or alternatives. You might not be able to offer your customers certain items on the inventory, but that doesn’t stop you from offering them attractive promotions or ordering options.
Benefits Of Effective Supply Chain Management
Boosted productivity is not the only benefit of better supply chain management for your SME. According to the Institute of Supply Chain Management, there are several other benefits. Better collaboration is one of them. By using integrated solutions designed for convenient information sharing, you can enjoy enhanced collaboration with suppliers, logistics partners, and your employees. A higher efficiency rate is another benefit. Knowing about manufacturing or freight delays can help you create and implement back-up plans, such as sourcing products from alternative suppliers.
As you can see, up-to-date information is an essential part of managing your supply chain in order to boost productivity for your SME.