Thursday, 08 July 2010 06:28

New consulting offering from IDS Scheer enables agile supply chain management

By Software AG

A new consulting offering from IDS Scheer AG, a Software AG company, allows businesses a quick transition into agile supply chain management (SCM). This enables them to react rapidly to changes in the market and increase their liquidity without endangering production or delivery capabilities. The solution is based on a four-step method that determines the best alignment of disposition parameters. Customers receive proposals for improving their supply chain within three weeks.

In this new offering, IDS Scheer combines its process knowledge in the area of supply chain management with its data analysis expertise. The method starts with an in-depth quantitative and qualitative analysis of relevant SCM data and processes, the identification of forecasting and disposition parameters that impact a company's inventory levels, and determining the optimal parameter values and processes.

Based on that information, IDS Scheer then prepares proposals for improving the key SCM performance indicators and their accompanying processes. Potential areas for optimisation and measures are then discussed with the customer's various departments and captured in an implementation plan that ensures the measures are actually executed.

In the final step, IDS Scheer collaborates with the business to introduce a monitoring system that enables the company to compare the defined parameters and their alignment with real-world conditions. Should the economic framework data change, the company can quickly adjust its supply chain by realigning any relevant SCM parameters to suit the new situation.

'With our method, we establish a close connection between IT and SCM. The IT ensures that all SCM parameters relevant for controlling are identified and determines their optimal, company-specific value. Based on that, we customise our interpretation of the results, derive where the customer needs to take action and help them successfully realise potential improvements,' states Matthias Schubert, an SCM expert with IDS Scheer AG.

Manufacturing businesses have to deal with the serious, ongoing issues of agility and improving inventory management. Over the last year, many manufacturing companies felt forced by the economic crisis to reduce their inventories quickly to ensure their own liquidity. When the economy picks back up again, they will need to readjust their disposition parameters quickly to avoid endangering production replenishment and delivery capabilities.

'However, the departments often lack the conditions necessary to guarantee that this happens. The sheer volume of data alone often renders them unable to continually assess the value of key indicators," according to Schubert. 'They have to rely on the old parameter settings in the supply chain, even if they no longer match the company's economic reality. The result: Solid planning and management is nearly impossible.'

IDS Scheer's offering delivers improvement proposals to the customer for an agile logistics network and inventory management system within three weeks. Instead of merely reacting to external events, businesses regain their leeway for making decisions and taking action.

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