Recently, there has been a significant growth in e-Business transactional information sharing and collaboration, especially in supply chain management.
Collaborative supply chain management practices are firmly establishing themselves as the way forward for successful and sustainable business operations.
Collaboration can dramatically improve supply chain effectiveness with demand planning, synchronized production scheduling, logistic planning, and new product design.
Collaboration has been referred to as the driving force behind effective supply chain management and may be the ultimate core capability. However, there is a fairly widespread belief that few firms have truly capitalized on its potential.
One of the most successful collaborations is aligning with marketing.
A good marketing department will communicate to consumers the organization’s competitive advantage – the reason to choose the organization over its competitors. If the desired competitive advantage is quality, Supply Chain can influence quality by doing business with the highest quality suppliers. If the competitive advantage is low cost, Supply Chain can use sourcing, negotiation, value analysis and other cost reduction practices to help reduce what the organization can charge to its customers.
Marketing creates expectations in customers. But, if there are supply chain problems, the goods won’t be delivered or the services won’t be performed when customers expect them to be. Supply Chain contributes to satisfying customer expectations and keeps performance dependable.
Marketing can promote the firm’s commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR.) From Starbucks putting “ethically sourced” on its coffee bags to Apple’s highly publicized annual Supplier Responsibility Progress Reports, organizations look to appeal to consumers and enhance their brands by promoting their CSR.
You can’t have CSR without supply chain social responsibility. By ensuring that purchased goods and services are free from slave or child labor, environmental hazards, conflict minerals, unsafe working conditions, and other law and ethical violations, Supply Chain assures an organization’s customers that they are doing business with a socially responsible partner. That’s especially critical when your customers have CSR obligations to their customers.
Collaboration and more social responsibility. That is future of supply chain management.