Supply and demand is in constant fluctuation. Demand can be difficult to predict, because so many different factors can affect it. Everything from season, to time of day, to a news story can impact a consumer's decision to purchase a product.
Today’s consumers are used to immediate gratification and therefore have high expectations. They don’t want the hottest new gadget tomorrow; they want it today. Companies risk losing consumers if they can’t deliver at a specified time due to unforeseen challenges in their supply chain. How can retailers respond to quickly changing demands on inventory? According to those at CIO, there are four methods retailers can implement to improve supply chain control.
Cloud Management of Inventory
Utilizing the massive storage abilities of the cloud gives you the ability to react to changing demands in real time. This saves time and money and improves the synchronization between suppliers and retailers. The cloud will allow you track inventory at any stage in your supply chain and make changes immediately.
These tags increase the accuracy of knowing where your inventory is at all times. You aren’t left wondering, “Has my shipment left the warehouse yet?” You can track 20,000 items per hour with 99% accuracy. This allows you to pass on efficiency to your consumer. This type of tagging also helps companies with multiple channels of distribution. It lets you know what goods are available for online sales versus what is on a store’s shelf. When time and efficiency are everything, this is a major innovation.
B2B e-procurement networks
B2B networks help retailers mitigate risk in their supply chain and give businesses the chance to respond quickly to risks changing in their supply chain – not just their suppliers, but their suppliers’ suppliers.
Synchronize marketing and supply chain teams
Have you ever been shopping after seeing an advertisement only to receive a “rain check” because the item is out of stock? This happens when supply chain and marketing teams are out of synch. If your teams are in-sync, they can ensure product availability before launching a major promotion.
Rather than guess how to coordinate your supply chain with real-time inventory, these tools will enable you to have better control and likely make your company more successful.
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