02 February 2016

How to reduce your supply chain costs without sacrificing customer service

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Today, Australian companies face ongoing pressures to balance supply and demand of products to meet customer demands whilst reducing costs. Inventory, warehousing along with distribution costs can significantly impact the bottom line of the business.

There’s no doubt that there are ongoing challenges in the modern supply chain landscape. How do you remain competitive while at the same time keeping costs and complexities down?

Akolade has asked a few key leaders on their tips and how they have maintained an effective and responsive supply chain:

“Active monitoring and controlling of process performance is essential to ongoing success,” Darren Bellerby, Vice Director – S&OP Business Process Optimisation, BASF South East Asia 

“It’s about balance. Balance the customer expectations with the capability of supply chain to execute and confirm the business acceptance of the resulting cost to serve. Get the balance right and the business prospers. If supply chain act in isolation you may get a good cosy outcome but not the desired business outcome,” Ron Hurley, General Manager – Supply Chain, Fuji Xerox Australia

“Through our Integrated Business Planning (IBP) process we are able to align our most recent Sales & Portfolio strategies to our supply chain plans on a monthly basis. This allows us to dynamically respond to changing market conditions and reallocate critical business resources to the newest priorities, projects & plans. IBP drives focus through the organisation and allows us to minimise cost by managing business priorities,” Ryan Dhondy, IBP Governance & Analytics Leader, Lionco  

There is no ‘one size fits all’ solution to significant cost savings. However, the basic principles of effective supply chain management still apply; understanding customer needs, executing your business strategy and review your data to continually improve the whole process.

The best part of my job as a Conference Production Manager is to create and manage my own conferences from concept to delivery, identify future conference topics as well as giving me a chance to expand my business card collection. Having a bit of a sweet tooth, you will always find me having lollies on my desk or you will catch me browsing on fashion sites during lunch breaks.

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