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Insights-Driven Decision Making in the Supply Chain Will Be Key in the Future Enterprise

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We are delighted to present this guest blog from Stefanie Naujoks, Research Director, Manufacturing Insights Europe at IDC EMEA.

Applying data analytics is a key measure to enable insights-driven decision making in the supply chain, and there are quite a few areas of supply chain improvements that are largely data driven.

Focus Areas of Data-Driven Supply Chain Improvements

When it comes to focus areas, for example, 50% of manufacturers worldwide consider closer alignment with the demand channel and operations planning as a key focus of supply chain improvements. But there are other areas for improvement too. Based on IDC survey results, other areas for improvement over the next three years include inventory planning and optimization and warehouse management systems. Neither of these comes as a surprise, given the need in many manufacturing subsegments to find the right balance between reducing inventory costs and at the same time reducing the risk of running out of stock.

Data analytics is key here, as data will act as the "centre of gravity" by enabling insights-driven decision making — for example, to determine the right balance of stock keeping and closer alignment with the demand channel and operations planning.

Concepts such as control towers that enable end-to-end real-time visibility across the entire supply chain (built on the notion of a digital twin of the entire supply chain) are data driven but are not yet very mature. Such concepts, however, will still build the foundation for many data-driven supply chain improvements.

Severe Lack of Data Analytics Capabilities

Despite the critical role of data and data analytics, 30% of manufacturers worldwide currently report a severe lack of data analytics capabilities, and this will slow down the transformation of supply chain operations toward resilient supply chains. Manufacturers that miss the opportunity to invest in these capabilities will risk losing out to those that do.

Not Forgetting the Demand Channel

Transforming supply chain operations will also have to include operations with the demand channel. Closer integration with customers and increasing customer engagement will be key for manufacturing organizations to stay relevant in the market. To enhance customer experience, optimizing sell-side operations will be key for manufacturing organizations to meet the future requirements of the demand channel. This is increasingly not only the case in the consumer goods industries, where B2C operations and direct-to-consumer (DtC) concepts play a major role, but increasingly also in the industrial B2B domain. According to IDC survey results, 32% of manufacturing organizations worldwide consider a more integrated collaboration with B2B customers as the biggest business opportunity from a business collaboration perspective.

For more on the importance of data-driven supply chain improvements, please see: https://marketing.global.fujitsu.com/manufacturing-targeted-investments-inb?utm_source=blog&utm_medium=organic&utm_campaign=idcinfobrief2

Biography Stefanie Naujoks, Research Director for Manufacturing Insights Europe, IDC

Stefanie Naujoks joined IDC as research director for Manufacturing Insights Europe in June 2020, based in Munich, Germany.

She has 20+ years of industry experience, both from the analyst and the IT vendor side.

Her research topics include digital transformation, industrial IoT, Industry 4.0, the digital factory, PLM, MES and SCM. Moreover, Stefanie has a research focus on ecosystem collaboration strategies of manufacturing organizations and digital industry ecosystems and how those will enable manufacturing organizations to accelerate product innovation, generate new revenue streams, achieve superior customer experience, and develop new business models.

Stefanie is an experienced speaker at events in Europe and is sought after for workshops with IT vendors and manufacturing companies.

She graduated with honors in business administration from Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, Germany, where she focused on corporate IT strategy and management and marketing.

Profile photo of Stefanie Naujoks