Global Data Synchronization Improves Supply Chain Efficiencies

Cost savings, improved efficiency and increased revenue can be counted among the benefits of adding a global data synchronization system, according to a report recently released by the Food Marketing Institute, the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), Accenture, Wegmans Food Markets and 1SYNC.

The report showed a 64% improvement in supply chain and operational areas and a 67% improvement in customer relationship and growth areas. The report was based on a study of Wegmans Food Markets and seven major suppliers -- Coca-Cola Co., General Mills, Hershey Co., J.M. Smucker Co., Nestle, PepsiCo, Inc. and Procter & Gamble Co.

"GDS affects all parts of the supply chain. Our study shows that benefits are available to everyone from the sales account manager to the backroom receiving clerk. When accurate data is synchronized between trading partners and used by all parts of both organizations, we can better meet consumers' needs," said GMA's vice president of supply chain and technology Pamela Stegeman.

Some specific benefits from GDS mentioned in the report include one manufacturer who was able to detect and improve the accuracy of a product weight irregularity. This saved the company $2.2 million in annual transportation costs when it corrected the weight on this single item.

Wegmans saw a $1 million cost reduction from improved logistics and distribution efficiencies and also saw a 7% increase in productivity by reducing check-in time.

Another manufacturer used GDS to improve the flow of new production information between themselves and their retail partners and was consequently able to reduce its speed-to-shelf for new items from eight weeks to two weeks.

Copies of the report are available on the GMA Web site at h

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