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Keep the Customer Satisfied

Keep the Customer Satisfied

A customer-centric business model offers a way to react more quickly to demand volatility.

"Manufacturing is in the throes of a massive shift from a production-centric to customer-centric business model," observes Randy Littleson, vice president of marketing with Kinaxis Inc., a provider of response management solutions. As he explains, traditional production-centric business models use a plan-and-execute standard that has become too rigid.

"Responsiveness to demand volatility is the new basis of competition," Littleson says, necessitating "customer-centric business models that focus on sense-and-respond processes," and help manufacturers "meet increasingly demanding and erratic customer buying behavior."

The plan-and-execute model, according to Littleson, relies on "machine thinking," which he describes as a closed-loop execution process that takes human input out of the equation. It would be better, he suggests, if manufacturers came to rely on real-time business intelligence and human collaboration to create demand-driven supply networks that are responsive to constant change.

Responding more quickly to change increases customer satisfaction and drives revenue growth, while responding more efficiently and effectively to those same changes can drive breakthroughs in operating performance." -- Randy Littleson, Kinaxis
This type of customer-centric business model, he says, will require:

Multi-enterprise visibility -- consolidating data from multiple sites (internal or external to the organization) for a holistic view of the extended supply chain and/or fulfillment network.

Real-time, collaborative analysis tools -- detecting and enabling those in the organization impacted by a change to collectively perform "what if" analysis of action alternatives.

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