The supply chain is one of the most important elements that promotes and supports the growth of the economy worldwide. Today’s market is characteristic of the incredible level of competitiveness and forward thinking that makes it the great enterprise that allows for supply chain management to thrive. In today’s day and age, concepts like the Internet of Things, augmented reality, artificial intelligence and self-operating machines it is important for managers and leaders, in general, to be able to adjust the past pace of the environment and become just as flexible and advanced as the world in which they operate. One of the things that we talk about constantly here at David Kiger’s Blog, is about how the technological shift that we have been experiencing as of lately in the world of logistics, comes hand to hand with a new set of challenges and an enhanced complexity of the supply chain that will seriously hinder the performance abilities of those unprepared to meet its trials.
In today’s article we want to talk about some of the things you have to keep in mind to be successful in this business, and that can be useful for those trying to break into the world of supply chain management and also for the one who has already been working in the industry, but want to give that edge to their small-scale operations or boost their already successful logistics department.
Have your vision extend beyond your lane.
In order to be successful in a world with so many moving parts, you must be able to look beyond your current role and see what else is out there. It is common knowledge in the industry that you must have a holistic view of the supply chain and be able to understand how all of its moving parts work from end-to-end when it comes to planning, logistics, procurement, budgeting and more. New roles in the supply chain are becoming more necessary and the use of people who is able to fulfill those roles that operate amongst all different areas of the supply chain and instrumental to the future of global logistics. Filling those big shoes is not easy and that is why there will be so much demand for those specialized individuals. This is the moment to prepare and be ready for what is to come next.
Think about working from the outside-in and not from the inside-out.
Most of the time, people arrange their supply chain with their own internal ideas and simply hope that what they created sticks with customers and they become loyal. But there is a better way of doing things and that is by using data to gauge what customers want and then make adjustments based on that. Social media and other methods of data collection are allowing people to manage the supply chain in ways that we never dreamed of before. Companies like Amazon do this on the daily basis and they actually run their business under that premise. They analyze customer’s behavior to a point that products are shipped and ready in distribution centers near the homes of people they believe will most likely purchase those particular products. It is worth remembering that gathering huge amounts of data is only as good as your ability to interpret that data and put it to good use. Having an outside-in approach is just the beginning, but know how to properly direct that approach is the key to success.
Training and education from professionals of the industry doesn’t have to be expensive and the investment made with resources and time will be well worth it once you see the benefits of a more prepared workforce. Logistics, transportation and distribution professionals offer many certifications that you should look at in order to learn what is happening in the supply chain globally. It is very common for companies to continue doing things the way they have worked for them and to be isolated from the real world. The problem is that in logistics, things change constantly and the best way to stay ahead of those changes is by having an outside perspective of what is going on with other companies and in the industry as a whole. This is my it is so important to make training a priority and to continue to promote an environment of professional improvement amongst your staff.
Strengthen your network
Collaborating with colleagues is a great way to learn more about the business and to understand how to deal with very specific challenges found by professionals around the world. How can you make a difference in the business across the board? Think about the things you have learned and can be shared with others as a way to help the collective industry advance and grow. Networking is a very strong tool in any business, and logistics is not the exception to this rule.
* Featured Image courtesy of Pixabay at Pexels.com