Maximizing Return On Investment From Supply Chains

Maximizing Return On Investment From Supply Chains
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The subject of supply chain technology has become hugely important in numerous industries lately. When implemented correctly, good supply chain management leads to benefits that include greater efficiency, cost reductions and enhanced customer fulfilment levels.

Yet, too many businesses go into this matter without a clear plan for how they are going to maximise their return on investment. They might have blind faith in things working out well, or they might decide to ignore the subject altogether in order to concentrate on other issues.

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Supply chain management is too vital a subject to leave to chance or to overlook altogether. Instead, it pays to closely analyse the different factors that will determine whether your introduction of a new method of understanding your supply chain will be a success.

The importance of quickly and efficiently analysing Big Data

It is impossible to understand the benefits offered by modern supply chain methods without talking about Big Data. It is a crucial subject for every business around the world, even if the US and China are currently regarded as Big Data leaders. This is because the data that is collected and analysed during the process is crucial to finding a better way forward.

Despite many of the top manufacturing firms now having a strong focus on extracting analytical insights from their data, they aren’t all in a position to fully understand what is going on. This is partly due to the fact that they only analyse their own data. For a more complete insight, they need to look at external data too.

A good example of how this should work in real life comes from the tasks carried out by TBM Consulting. This is a firm that specialises in operations consulting and supply chain consulting for manufacturers and distributors.

When working with clients on how to improve their operations, they start by looking at how to get the big picture from the available data. They do this by identifying relevant outside data sources that can be used to explain changes in the client’s key performance indicators.

How a platform can aid this approach

The points covered above make great sense, but not every company is in a position to pull together and analyse such large amounts of data. This is where using the right platform is essential to making the entire strategy feasible.

Sisense’s Business Intelligence Platform is ideal in this respect, as it greatly simplifies end-to-end BI management. This tool can be used to build flexible data models using information from any source. This reduces the time it takes to get hold of the full insights.

The end result of this process is that the business gets hold of real, useful insights quickly and effortlessly. Intuitive platforms such as this allow non-technical users to get to grips with them, cutting out the need for hiring new, specialised staff or running time-consuming training courses.

What does this mean for the future?

There is no doubt that the ability to utilise Big Data is big news for the business world. Yet, like all exciting new advances, not every firm is going to understand it fully or decide to take full advantage of the possibilities on offer.

This could mean a gap grows between those who maximise their returns and those who choose not to. It might seem like just a small part of the overall business plan, but it is something that will increasingly mark the difference between success and failure.

If you want your company to improve its supply chain technology and use of Big Data, the sooner you get started the quicker you will start to see the benefits. It just isn’t worth getting left behind when the latest technology makes it easy to stay at the front of your industry.

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Ankur Shah is the founder of the Value Investing India Report, a leading independent, value oriented journal of the Indian financial markets. Ankur has more than eight years of equity research experience covering emerging markets, with a focus on India and South East Asia. He has worked as both a buy-side investment analyst for a global long/short equity hedge fund and a sell-side analyst for an emerging markets investment bank. Ankur is a graduate of Harvard Business School. You can learn more about his latest views on global markets at the Value Investing India Report. -- He can be emailed at
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