Visibility Plays a Key Role in Building a Responsive Supply Chain

Oct. 10, 2008
Visibility allows companies to better manage delays, capacity issues and disruptions.

A new study by the Aberdeen group shows that visibility into inventory, supplier and order events, and trade documents, among other milestones, helps companies make their supply chain execution processes more flexible and responsive.

"Visibility-empowered supply chain managers can be more flexible in performing the necessary 'agility actions' -- such as shipment re-routing due to demand changes or infrastructure disruptions, expedited shipping of late shipments, cross-docking and distribution center by-pass strategies, vendor-managed inventory programs and more," said Viktoriya Sadlovska, research analyst, Aberdeen. "In addition, these companies are better able to inform or warn their customers about potential delivery delays, capacity issues and other supply chain disruptions, allowing them to work out acceptable issue resolution while maintaining high customer service levels."

This study's findings show that granular supply chain visibility is a key component of the infrastructure needed to build an agile and responsive supply chain network.

Best-in-Class companies in this study are more likely to:

  • Access the needed supply chain information in a timely matter,
  • Report a higher quality of data collected,
  • Have visibility into in-transit shipments, supply chain disruptions and accrued supply chain costs.

Best-in-Class companies have more flexibility in enabling a responsive supply chain execution process; they are:

  • About 30% more likely than Laggards to have the ability to do cross-docking or treat in-transit inventory as available for safety stock calculation purposes
  • 37% more likely than Laggards to have the ability to redirect in-transit shipments to higher points of demand and 28% more likely than Laggards to have the ability to carry out threshold-enabled supply chain decision making

To view the report visit:

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