By Amber Foster
Globalization, rising energy costs and strict government regulations are just a few of the many challenges threatening the stability of U.S. manufacturing and distribution industries. A modern supply chain has become instrumental for industrial companies to meet these challenges and maintain a competitive advantage. By leveraging new technologies and methodologies that modernize our supply chain, ITP has maintained consistent growth in the face of rapid technological advances and market instability.
Because adaptation to new advancements and modern trends is crucial to compete and gain market share, companies must plan ahead to keep up with supply chain partners, or get left behind. A disconnected supply chain creates longer procurement cycles, diminishes quality, increases costs, affects customer satisfaction and threatens the vitality of a company.
Here are 5 attributes of a well-managed distribution supply chain that you can adopt into your own processes and successfully meet the many challenges in today’s industrial market.
Access to Shared Information
Communication is probably the most important attribute of a successful modern supply chain. Communication that keeps all members along a supply chain informed of developments affecting demand and operations greatly improves efficiency and productivity. Access to shared information enables partners along all points of the supply chain to meet changing demand conditions and to quickly make adjustments that prevent disruptions.
Integrated Management Software
Business process management software allows an organization to use a system of integrated applications that manage operations and automate many back office functions related to technology, services and human resources.
Integrated automation tools can greatly improve the time, energy and resources needed for many of the everyday operations. ITP has invested over one-half million dollars into an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system with fully integrated applications for managing all operations related to inventory management and control, from product planning to sales.
We help our customers reduce costs and maximize efficiency by offering services that incorporate the principles of Lean Manufacturing into inventory management and replenishment. Lean programs offer a variety of different methodologies designed to eliminate non-value added activities from the production process. Benefits include reduction of customer on-hand inventory and procurement costs, lowered freight and transportation costs, improved fill rates and increased inventory turns and cash flow.
To meet our goal of building long-standing customer relationships, we provide vendor managed inventory programs that foster a closer understanding of supply between customer and supplier. Inventory programs also eliminate many of the functions associated with inventory acquisition and keep our customer’s end-user satisfied.
Streamlined, two-way communication between digitally connected supply chain networks are mutually beneficial for all partners. Collaboration between supply chain members strengthens relationships, encourages teamwork, satisfies customer demands, grows markets and increases competitive market share. Over the last four years, we have actively engaged in collaborative business development management training, vendor sponsored product training and mentoring programs that improve collaboration on all levels of the supply chain.
Global Market Knowledge
Understanding the global market is a key component to the relationships among the distribution industries. We understand that importing is not all it’s cracked up to be. We don’t guarantee that we sell products cheaper than what you may be able to purchase overseas, but we remove the headache that often comes from purchasing low quality products and consequently, throwing away thousands of dollars.
In order to keep costs low and stay competitive, ITP purchases some of its goods offshore. Over 30 years of business with offshore vendors allows us to purchase in large quantities, providing customers with competitive pricing, quality products and efficient service.
Ready to learn more about how our special programs can help you? Contact us to speak with one of our customer service representatives today.