The strength of any supply chain is the people involved. There are people on the assembly making goods, other people deliver those goods to customers, and yet more people complete the required administration at each part of the process. By their very presence it is obvious that everyone in the supply chain is vital. However as with any chain, the supply chain is only as strong as weakest link. In the supply chain the weakest link is almost invariably the people.
Often, breaks in the supply chain are accidental or caused by a lack of personal ownership, as with the ‘Dockets in Pockets’ syndrome. Employees regard their responsibilities in isolation, failing to recognise that their casual negligence can have much wider implications for the business as a whole.
Other times supply chains grind to a halt because a key staff member is away on annual leave and the employees operating in their absence lack the required skills or training to complete the job accurately. Tasks are then either left undone or done incorrectly, increasing the time and effort required to rectify the situation. Delays in the supply chain cause delays in payment, reducing cash flow and negatively affecting future transactions.
Occasionally issues can be caused by a disgruntled employee using their knowledge to maliciously damage the chain and their employer’s business. Feeding deliberate misinformation, or obstructing certain key transactions and interactions can have a major impact on a company and the other businesses in their supply chain.
So although everyone is key to the supply chain, they also have the potential to introduce significant problems into the process too. The solution is to automate as many of these links as possible, reducing the chances of introducing operator error into the chain and keeping each transaction moving as smoothly as possible. Using the principles of Business Process Outsourcing and Supply Chain Management, many of these potential people-related problems can be avoided, increasing efficiencies, reducing costs and allowing employees to focus on doing their jobs, rather than on administration.
And although costs savings can be made within a single business, the benefits can be shared up and down the supply chain by implementing a suitable hosted system which can be accessed by them all. Celtrino’s Smart Admin platform provides an interface for businesses at every point in the supply chain through which they can automate many of their transactions.
People will always be key to the supply chain, but there is no harm in investing to reduce manual administration and human error.
November 23, 2011 in
BPO, Business Process Outsourcing, Cash Flow Management, Smart Admin, Supply Chain, Supply Chain Management