Supply Chain Productivity Boosters: Three Technologies Making Maximum Impact
In today’s perpetually advancing and highly competitive modern marketplace, it is vital for businesses to stay ahead of the industry and maintain an edge, starting by reviewing current processes and identifying what can be automated or require less time, labor, and costs by utilizing technology. Embracing new technological trends will streamline workflow and optimize productivity for greater success.
Three technology innovations in particular, which enhance effectiveness, lower operational costs, and increase customer satisfaction, have impacted the logistics and supply chain management arena.
- Transportation Management Systems (TMS) – A TMS serves as a logistics management hub in a shared network of shippers, carriers, and customers. The system allows companies to list live shipments in one place so carriers in the network can actively bid on it, therefore simplifying the process, securing the best price, and saving time. Additionally, these types of systems allow for tracking shipments, printing shipping documentation, and exporting reports, making it easy to identify trends and understand where money is being spent.
- Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) – An Electronic Data Interchange allows business to communicate information that was once communicated physically on paper. An EDI makes it simple to send such information including purchase orders, advance ship notices, and invoices. It also gives you the ability to create other special documents like packing lists or even carton labels in the particular format a customer requires. This effectively eases the process of exchanging all data and documents by integrating these functions in one platform.
- Inventory Management Software (IMS) – IMS is effective for tracking inventory levels, sales, orders, and deliveries. This software is imperative for sales teams to have an accurate account of product sales, accounting, and asset management. The resulting information may affect the destination of the next set of shipments due to space and availability. Also, knowing when inventory is received is key as paying storage on these units will cause the value of the goods to deplete over time. IMS allows for more informed decision-making regarding when or what to do with inventory.
As more innovations are utilized, supply chain management will see a greater level of productivity and efficiency – and most significantly, an increase in profitability.