Supply chain management is a crucial part of many businesses. Several moving parts need management and potential issues to mitigate. Excellent communication and organisation skills are essential for success when managing a supply chain.
You will also need to be agile and proactive, able to react to changing situations as they occur.
If this is your first supply chain management role, it is important to start strong. Here are six of the most important tips to help you thrive in your new position.
1. Keep An Eye On Supply Chain Trends
You should stay up to date on the latest supply chain trends. This means watching the news and following publications relevant to your industry. Try to identify how different trends may affect your supply chain and develop solutions to mitigate any possible issues.
Staying updated on trends can also alert you to the latest developments and best practices to keep your skills sharp.
2. Understand The Importance Of Sustainability
Sustainability is critical for businesses in all industries. Supply chains can be responsible for a lot of a company’s carbon emissions, so you should look for ways to mitigate this. Consider the suppliers and other partners you use and see what their sustainability practices are.
When looking for new business partners, ensure you choose companies with a focus on sustainable practices.
3. Choose Dependable Suppliers
A supply chain is only as strong as its weakest link, meaning that you will need to choose new suppliers and other companies with care. In addition to sustainability, ensure the suppliers you use have a good reputation for delivering on their promises.
Check reviews and word of mouth recommendations to ensure you make the right choice in business partners.
4. Take Some Additional Training
Any good manager is constantly learning. This is no different for a supply chain manager. There is always something new to learn to help you give the very best to your role. The better you are at your job, the more your company will benefit, and the more secure the business’s future will be. You should consider training that builds on your existing supply chain knowledge.
Look for a supply chain and logistics management course online to build on your knowledge and make you a better leader.
5. Build Strong Working Relationships
You will need good working relationships with every company in your supply chain. You should start on the right foot and get in touch with your point of contact in each business when you start your new role. Also, get to know your team within your company.
Supply chain management requires excellent interpersonal skills, so it is essential to hone and develop these throughout your career.
6. Bring In Automation
Automation can have an incredible impact on the efficiency of a supply chain. Implementing new processes and technology into an existing supply chain can often be challenging, so you should approach the task with care. Ensure that automation will be worth the risk and investment.
Research the types of automation that may benefit your business and bring in the changes incrementally to avoid disrupting the business operations too seriously all at once.