3 Ways to Break Down Supply Chain Silos

It’s a fact of business life: people need to collaborate to get things done better and faster. In a study from Queens University in Charlotte, nearly 3 out of 4 respondents rate teamwork and collaboration as “very important.” Yet 39% of respondents believe that their company does not cooperate enough. Further research then led to a similar result, with 34% of workers interviewed stating that they are not satisfied with their company’s work management process.   

Silos occur when departments do not or cannot 
easily share information with other departments. The consequence is that long-term business objectives are replaced by departmental priorities.

Given the increasingly strategic role of supply chains within companies, the existence of silos increasingly becomes a threat to their operation. The importance of information and data management then makes it easy to intuit that silos interrupt the circulation of this “lifeblood”.

The role of the supply chain manager

The task of supply chain manager is fundamental in identifying and eliminating these silos. The continuous financial pressure to reduce costs in supply chain operations is now a constant, while customer expectations continue to grow along with the increase in the complexity of most product and service offerings.   

As a leader in your supply chain or manufacturing, you are required to stay in tune with growing global demand. At the same time, demand volatility increased. Logistics and large commodity price fluctuations affect production and transportation costs, while economic uncertainty obscures monthly forecasts making accuracy extremely variable.

Large seasonal swings, unexpected supplier outages, and even the ease of increasing sales and marketing campaigns can drastically impact performance and profitability in very negative ways if not managed properly.

The solution is to align the foundations of your company with the company’s objectives: people, processes and tools.

How to align people, processes and tools to business objectives?

In this context of supply chain uncertainty, there are three key initiatives that SC managers can take to ensure that all actors in the supply chain are heading in the right direction:

1. Aligning people to business processes, as a whole;

2. Support business processes through suitable technologies;

3. Adapt technologies to business objectives and market demands.

Technology is the best answer to information silos. If your technology is connected , your information, processes, and people will also be connected. You will have an up-to-date overview of all supplier expenses and performance for each contract committed across the company. The first step is to assess what your information silos are that block the flow of information. So try to invest in a solution that gives you real-time access to a synchronized view of what’s happening in your supply chain right now. Replace multiple fragmented systems with a single enterprise network and  supply chain collaboration solution.


Learn how to make your supply chain processes collaborative: read the article >

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