Supply Chain Management: Efficiency vs. Responsiveness vs. Effectiveness
Efficiency, responsiveness, and effectiveness are some of the biggest bywords in the world of supply chain management right now.
An efficient supply chain management (SCM) system means that you’re getting your products to your target destination cost-effectively and with the most optimized speed. Your facility of choice should be operated in such a way that the business runs seamlessly, all while staying on top of your energy costs and reducing your carbon footprint.
However, an efficient SCM may not exactly be responsive or effective. This begs the question: should you focus more on efficiency than the other two aspects of your supply chain? Should all three get equal attention? The answer may be complicated, but one thing is for sure: the value of supply chain efficiency to your company is absolute.
First Things First: What’s Supply Chain Efficiency?
Efficiency is a measure of the performance of your internal processes. To make sure your supply chain management is efficient, you need to leverage your available resources in the most impactful way possible, whether these are physical, technological, human or financial resources.
In a lot of cases, supply chain managers try to optimize the use of man-hours, cost of materials, packaging, and other overheads. To that end, supply chain efficiency optimization can help you save money, streamline your business processes, and potentially increase your profit margin.
Remember supply chain costs account for a big portion of your company overheads. That’s why an efficient chain often translates to competitive pricing, allowing you to pass some of your cost savings to your customers. Ultimately, this gives you an added edge over your competition.
What makes an efficient supply chain management?
Smooth and efficient inventory management:
You need to get a handle on your inventory management. If there’s too little, you’ll have to wrestle with last-minute orders and use more resources to try to kill PR fires started by the shortage. That’s not to mention lost man-hours. Over-stocking, on the other hand, means that you have to pay more to track, store, process and of course purchase the extra inventory. There needs to be a subtle balance as far as inventory is concerned.
Work with equally efficient and ambitious 3rd-party partners: Whom you partner with can make or break your supply chain efficiency. As such, your strategic collaborators and 3-rd party logistics partners should be top-notch. Smart businesses work with a transparent, reputable and fully-equipped supply chain management company like Quick Box Fulfillment.
Everything is optimized for efficiency: Here think of cutting-edge supply chain software, transaction integration, well-trained employees, strategic pick/drop routes, and much more. Your dispatch routes should also be fully optimized.
Customer satisfaction is top priority:Good supply chain management amounts to nothing if customers are disgruntled. From pricing to delivery, every facet of your supply chain should be built around customer service.
Taking your Supply Chain to the Next Level with Responsiveness and Effectiveness
A responsive supply chain offers a dual advantage. It’s receptive to your needs, especially when it comes to your internal processes. And it’s also effective when it comes to meeting the needs and demands of your vendors, suppliers, partners and, most importantly, your customers.
The traits of a highly effective and responsive supply chain include:
There’s open, seamless communication: You should have multiple channels open for smooth, two-way communication. This makes it easy and hassle-free for customers and other external organizations to share their concerns, problems, and questions. QuickBox Fulfillment responds to clients in real time. If a problem or change needs to take place, they make it happen.
It should be able to adapt to changing fulfillment needs:Sales volumes vary from one season to the next. An effective supply chain is designed around flexibility. A responsive supply chain allows you to scale your fulfillment up or down without a hitch.
Orders are filled with a high level of accuracy: Nothing turns off the customer more quickly than an inaccurate or wrongly filled order. An effective system means that you can fill and deliver accurate orders in the shortest time possible. Quick-Box Fulfillment’s error rate is less than 2%, comparable with Amazon’s. If there is an error- they fix it and don’t charge their clients to make it right.
It’s built around customer satisfaction: Customers mean everything to your business. However, sometimes things go south. For example, the customer may make a wrong order,you may deliver the wrong items,the customer can change their mind. Whatever the case, it’s your responsibility to see to it that everything is rectified and made right in the end. That’s where stellar customer service comes in handy and a good SCM partner can help you with.
Every supply chain is unique. Efficient supply chain management gets your products to the customer at the most optimal cost and speed. On the other hand, an effective supply chain allows you to put yourself in the shoes of your customers. Together, that means you’ll get the right product to the right person at the right time. Making this happen when you have 100 orders a month is easy. What about when you start to scale? Bringing on a partner like QuickBox can help make your scale a smooth reality. Get the most our of your own success and consider working with QuickBox!
Contact us to learn more about how QuickBox Fulfillment can help you meet the needs of your supply chain management while also minimizing order fulfillment costs.