Future-proofing the supply chain is top of mind as manufacturers are squeezed by even bigger issues like baby boomer retirement, a limited talent pool and the challenge of how best to leverage technology and artificial intelligence.
Innovation and collaboration are key drivers when anticipating client needs. “We work every day with clients focused on being ahead of customer demand. Yet, the realities are changing expectations, budgets, balance sheets and P&Ls. Despite continued growth, it’s important to be vigilant with inventory levels, margins and operational performance. We find that the most successful companies are looking at their end-to-end supply chain and ensuring that every aspect from suppliers to customers are aligned,” Lisa Anderson said.
Alignment can be achieved in several ways. By working through a S&OP/ SIOP (Sales, Inventory, Operations Planning) model, demand and supply are not only aligned but the teams associated with these internal functions and others such as R&D, Finance and external supply chain partners are aligned as well.
“SIOP looks at the business through a different lens. We recently worked with an manufacturer who was able to gain a better view into customer demand which enabled capacity and operations alignment. The results lead to improved service levels and reduced lead times, which lead to increased customer satisfaction and revenue growth. Inventory levels were also reduced, freeing up cash to be invested elsewhere. Lastly, with greater visibility into the supply chain, material, freight and operational costs were reduced. By aligning the key stakeholders and plans, the results are substantial and an example of future-proofing,” Lisa Anderson said.
At the recent APICS Inland Empire Chapter’s Fall 2019 Symposium, panelist discussed the need for educational institutions and technical firms to collaborate with internal functions to elevate the performance of the end-to-end supply chain.
Ms. Anderson also sees emphasis on manufacturing and supply chain through her involvement with the Inland Empire Economic Partnership which is developing a consortium for advanced manufacturing and logistics. She is also active with the Manufacturing Council of the Inland Empire where she heads the Innovation Awards.
“Manufacturing remains a core industry in the U.S. The time is right, and the time is now to focus to future-proofing manufacturing and the supply chain for success” she concluded.
About LMA Consulting Group
Lisa Anderson, MBA, CSCP, CLTD is the founder and president of LMA Consulting Group, Inc., a consulting firm that specializes in manufacturing strategy and end-to-end supply chain transformation. She focuses on maximizing the customer experience and enabling profitable, scalable, dramatic business growth. For information, to sign up for her Profit Through PeopleTM Newsletter or for a copy of her book, visit LMA-ConsultingGroup.com.
This story is Partner Content.