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Survey: Manufacturers Fail To Synch Supply-Chain Operations

Compiled By Traci Purdum Many manufacturers fail to implement supply-chain management applications, according to a survey by APICS -- the Educational Society for Resource Management and ILOG, a global supplier of software components. In fact, two-thirds of manufacturing companies do not successfully synchronize supply-chain operations with their partners, which may lead to added distribution and planning time and increased costs. The survey, which queried ILOG's customers and APICS' 60,000 members and readers, also revealed that 90% of respondents believe that supply-chain planning tools could help address their synchronization issues, but only 33% of the respondents said that their company was planning to address supply-chain synchronization issues in the next six months. "Despite all the exposure and publicity given to supply-chain-management applications, a large percentage of respondents still have not implemented these kinds of solutions," says Doug Kelly, editor of APICS' The Performance Advantage -- a publication for resource management professionals. "The results of this survey indicate that many manufacturers have a ways to go in taking advantage of the tools that enable true supply-chain synchronization." Other survey findings include:

  • More than 80% of respondents believe it is very difficult to coordinate disparate software systems with those of their partners.
  • More than 66% of respondents find it difficult to coordinate their supply-chain operations with those of their outsourcing partners.
  • Two-thirds of those respondents who do currently use supply-chain management applications use different software solutions than their partners, creating a lack of access to valuable external data that leads to incomplete visibility into their supply chain.
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