Companies that understand what supply chain management can offer them in terms of position and strategy invest in it to differentiate themselves from their existing market. Through a good strategy, metrics, supplier performance, suitable technology, inventory control and integration and collaboration, companies can flourish even during low sales seasons. Below are some factors that can affect supply chain management that furniture companies should keep in mind.
Stock control identifies and tracks the amount of stock available. It applies to raw materials as well as finished goods. Proper stock control ensures that the right stock is at the right place at the right time. Categorising stock, according to requirements allows for the concentration of resources for the furniture production process.
Investing in software such as Product Configurator can improve efficiency and enable better stock management. It helps furniture manufacturers manage custom-made products or tailoring products to the needs of the customer; as a range of product options, features and combinations, can be added to the system, making it suitable for one-off orders or mass ordering. Custom sales orders created can directly be translated to a bill-of-materials for production. All orders can be collated and using MRP, purchasing can use it to ensure the right components and materials are available when required.
This can be seen as a cost-cutting measure that can affect processes such as manufacturing, operations or even customer service support but, it can be beneficial to outsource especially when the skills are not in-house. In furniture industries, it is common to outsource wood or sub-assemblies. Outsourcing providers are ultimately suppliers to your business, and to ensure the smooth running of the relationship, quality should be monitored.
Quality management of materials
Overseeing of tasks and materials supplied is required in maintaining and achieving the required excellence. This process involves quality control and improvement, determining quality policies and assurance. Ensuring quality materials will lead to quality products. Continuous improvement is not just within the supply chain, as any quality improvement within the business can add value to the consumer.
Innovations and ideas come with every step moving technology to a new digital world. Through product design and innovation, organisations can attract more customers and in turn, increase profits. Part of the innovation process involves sourcing the right suppliers to support the process, as having the right materials and sufficient quantities can all add to improving overall competitive advantage.
This deals with how resources are acquired, stored and transported to where required or the final-destination. Logistics plays a key part in ensuring the supply chain is efficient, reducing operational costs while at the same time increasing efficiency. In the case of poor logistics, deliveries can be delayed, which can lead to a failure to meet the requirements of the clients.
Furniture manufacturers should take the above factors into account as it can affect supply chain management, as improving supply chain management can help businesses thrive and keep customers engaged.