Supply Chain management is what shapes the success of some businesses. While some businesses create business models, or products that cater towards meeting either the customer preference or niche, some companies build up on their ability to have effective relationships with their suppliers, as a means of strengthening their competencies. There are several issues that must be addressed, since the success of supply chain is not simply focusing on information sharing.
Based on our basic understanding, the integration of suppliers into the business lies on the efforts, trust and communication that exists between the parties involved, from the producer, seller, to retailer. Advancements in information technology and the high costs in investing on it are yet another challenge and limitation for companies to maintain a competitive advantage in the supply chain.
The emerging globalized environment and advanced technological advances are two important factors that need to be addressed for companies to adequately take advantage of opportunities that exist to strengthen not only the information sharing aspect, but other aspects of their supply –demand framework. Information sharing is what enables coordination and planning of the supply chain; however, companies need to develop the potential to utilize the shared information in a way that is transparent, and effective.
If you originally do not take the proper initiatives to address problems that jeopardize your competitive position in the respective industry in which you operate, the challenges to survive and gain trust and confidentiality in your client base will increase. It is crucially important to realize that competition can threaten your market share because of factors consisting of not only involving suppliers; but also, integrating IT to build up on customer satisfaction. It is impressive how strategic management can be by cooperating and opting for a strategy that modifies the supply chain, customer relationship, and integration of digital web based opportunities.
When reviewing global and well-known case -studies-General Motors (GM) is one of the most applicable to consider. They realized that monotony of information in their business transactions, demands, and supplies were not going to benefit them. They managed the flow of materials, information, and money, not only within, but also, out of the organization. Becoming digital was one of the alternatives, but without properly managing and integrating their suppliers they would not have properly addressed customer specific needs, and satisfaction, so all three components were and are important. For instance, they introduced the Order-to-Delivery (OTD), which is a strategy that enables you to provide the products to your customer at the own specifications (the right products, the right time, and the right place, the right price, and the right amount). This initiative can be proved to be effective if team-work is emphasized. Logistics should be keenly considered in who is responsible to execute what in order for the strategy to be effective (for example: one team takes care of order fulfillment (communication with customers), another of supply operations (assembling and communicating with suppliers) and another team focus on logistics-or-making sure the product is delivered at the time specified).