Chains of Command: The Essential Steps of Supply Chain Management
There are two types of supply chains: information and materials. Whichever type of supply you’re curating and managing, it’s important to establish a good relationship with your supplier and have plans in place for any scenario.
Creating a strong supply chain management system means you always deliver on time, which results in trusting customers.
When you’re first starting with supply chain management, it can be tricky to get everything situated efficiently.
To get you started, here are some supply chain management tips.
Have Good Supplier Relationships
You’ve probably put a lot of research into your supplier. It’s important to set up a good relationship at the beginning of doing business with them.
Be clear with them about your expectations and requirements from the beginning. It’s a good idea to start with as simple of orders as possible and add to them from there as you grow confidence in your supplier.
Once you’ve established your orders and you have a relationship with your supplier, you should continue keeping that relationship in good health. Make sure they know your name, your orders, and your company.
Don’t just call out mistakes, but also let them know when they fulfilled an order especially timely or accurately. You don’t want your supplier to cringe every time they see you call or email.
Keep them up to date on where you plan to take your company and if you plan on adding new orders in the future.
When your supplier inevitably makes a mistake, don’t penalize them for it. Chances are if you work with them on solving the mistake, they’ll do everything in their power to fix it. And they’ll make sure it doesn’t happen again.
If your reaction is sensible, they’ll remember. And one day you might make a mistake too, and they’ll be more than willing to work with you to fix it.
Have Multiple Suppliers
Finally, even though you’ve formed a trusting relationship with your supplier, you should always have more than one for each product.
Just in case one supplier experiences delays or runs out of inventory. Then you’ll have a backup ready.
Use analytical tools to forecast your customers’ supply needs. This is important because if you’re always out of stock for a size medium, then you might lose that market.
You can even share those analytics with your supplier so they can be aware of your needs and make sure they can meet them.
Track Your Inventory
One thing that will help with forecasting your inventory is tracking your inventory. Track what you sell, who you sell it to, and when they’re ordering it.
You also need to track where products are throughout the supply chain. Whether it’s in production or shipping, make sure you know where everything is.
Not only will this help with analytics, but it will also help make sure your customers remain happy and get their orders promptly.
Help With Supply Chain Management
Setting up a supply chain management process takes experience and professionalism. Thankfully, we’re here to help.
To discuss how we can help you set up more efficient supply chain management, email or call us.