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A workflow for achieving end-to-end PO visibility with suppliers

14 July 2022

Global supply chain issues are making headlines these days and all industries are feeling the pain of supply chain disruptions, facing everything from difficulty obtaining needed supplies to being unable to fulfill customer orders as quickly as they have in the past.

A workflow for achieving End to End PO Visibility
IDAS Supplier Portal

According to Gartner, more than 50% of Supply Chain Executives cite Lack of Supply Chain visibility as their Top Challenge, and according to a recent report from ASCM and the Economist Intelligence Unit Over half of companies lack end-to-end visibility into their supply chains because they rely on a picture of supply and demand that is based only on internal data from the company itself. This leaves many vulnerable to unexpected risks according.

This is way per IDC's March 2022 Supply Chain Survey, 70% of companies are focusing on improving supply chain visibility and 80% are looking for ways to be more agile.

While there are many factors contributing to supply chain disruptions that are beyond a company’s control, businesses are not wholly powerless. With the right mix of technology, methodology, and a proven workflow, companies can better manage such lack of visibility and collaboration, achieving end-to-end po visibility – from factory to distribution center and assembly lines and stop constantly chasing products, pasts dues, suppliers and line stoppages.

We've developed a workflow that helps companies achieve end-to-end PO visibility from PO placement by the Customer, to supplier confirmations, to manufacturing tracking of WIP and stocks, while predicting on-time deliveries, to real-time shipment tracking. This workflow involves both technology and methodology that helps take down data silos both internally and externally and build a mutually beneficial relationship that harnesses visibility and collaboration.

The workflow helps bridge different technological systems and shares data with suppliers in a user-friendly and real-time collaborative environment that allows bi-directional communication on all aspects from purchase orders, forecasts, manufacturing processes, deliveries, shipments, score cards and KPI's.

The workflow is based on the following 4 main objectives:

    1. Increase PO visibility and traceability with suppliers - Companies spend an enormous amount of time and resources communicating with their suppliers in manual-intensive tools and mechanisms. These are not effective and outdated. Digitalization will help communicate accurate changes in your requirements in real-time, enabling all sides to adjust to constantly changing demands during times of crisis.

    2. Manufacturing visibility - Obtaining accurate WIP (work-in-progress) and stock level quantities from your suppliers and manufacturers. This will help identify and analyze any potential shortages that may lead to line stoppages while also immediately fulfilling requirements that arise from your manufacturing sites when needed.

    3. Data Sharing - Share as much information with suppliers as possible. Send forecasts, news updates, and accounts payable information with your supplier online. This will increase supplier participation rates and overall information sharing.

    4. Use of big data analytics algorithms - These tools allow companies to track suppliers' PO life cycle in real time, do an in-depth analysis of supplier's data to predict problems in delivery schedules and supplier's performance, and anticipate problems before they occur to avoid running out of supplies and find the needle in the haystack - the problematic PO line and parts that will be late and cause issues.

Implementing such a workflow can have significant results:

    1. Adjusting quickly to unanticipated change (companies are reacting to unexpected changes in the supply chain on a weekly (43%) and daily (36%) basis.)

    2. Shift suppliers quickly when needed and eliminate days of waiting for responses.

    3. Increase responsiveness and stop wasting time chasing down information on multiple emails and phone calls.

    4. Keep the teams focused on higher-value activities.

    5. Increase efficiency and allow all trading partners to have a single, accurate picture of the business, improving overall supply chain performance.

    6. Reduce risk. Know the status of your suppliers in real-time, so you can react quickly when disruptions occur.

    7. Reduce some of personnel costs. APQC finds that organizations with greater visibility use fewer full time-equivalent employees (FTEs) for ordering materials and services than those that have little or no visibility. (from a\ a recent APQC (American Productivity & Quality Center) article "EXTEND VISIBILITY BEYOND TIER 1 SUPPLIERS").

    8. Improve OTD rates and reduce assemble lines shutdowns with the costs associated with such problems.

Stop chasing your parts, past dues and line stoppages. Its time to become proactive!

See our webinar “Achieving end to end po visibility” to learn more:

Click to view!