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Are you a manufacturer that just wants to settle? Alternatively, are you a business owner who wants to take their supply chain management in the manufacturing industry to the next level?

For a long time, manual processes and little real-time information was good enough to keep manufacturing processes going, but now, it is becoming clear that supply chain management in the manufacturing industry should be efficient or businesses risk being left behind.

Getting smarter

The pandemic compelled businesses that were hesitant to adopt digitalization to do so because it was the only option to reach their customers. It helped simplify and automate supply chain management in manufacturing. The COVID-19 crisis, according to a McKinsey survey, has accelerated customer interactions by several years. Nearly 58% of customers interactions are now digital.

The rise of the "connected" or "smart" factory is on the rise, with many companies realizing that supply chain management in manufacturing requires change and development. They're using technology to connect their factories and gain real-time visibility into their supply chain, allowing them to address issues like inefficiencies, predict breakdowns and maintenance, and boost customer satisfaction and margins. Technological advancements enable improved visibility and access to supply chain data, which can aid collaborative discussions and projects in production, supply, service, sales, and marketing.

Data is key

Data is key when establishing the importance of supply chain management in the manufacturing industry. To be more exact, real-time data.

Data from each aspect of your business can help you figure out where you can improve and how to make the most of your current processes. If you want complete visibility of your supply chain, you must collect data from your sales processes, suppliers, order fulfilment, product performance, and customer support. You can make adjustments from beginning to end this way.

Getting started with the Internet of Things

Sensors, electronics, software, and internet connectivity are all embedded into our physical ‘things,' making them increasingly linked! These "things" will detect and collect information before communicating with other devices and computers. IoT is a revolutionary aid in supply chain management in the manufacturing industry.

Sounds great doesn’t it? It gets better.

You'll have unprecedented visibility across your entire production line, as well as customized insights that feed right back into plant management, if you use the Internet of Things. Not only that, but IoT-enabled forensic and root cause analysis can detect bottlenecks, diagnose production issues, and proactively identify opportunities for preventative maintenance, increasing supply chain uptime and focusing on supply chain management to gain a stronger foothold in the manufacturing industry.

Take the next step with Data Analytics

Powerful analytics is the next step to transforming supply chain management in the manufacturing industry!

By using built-in analytics and machine learning you can quantify how daily production impacts financial performance with visibility to the machine level. Data analytics is that missing link which unifies daily production activity to financial performance as a manufacturer.

Production planners and senior management can determine how to scale operations by knowing if the factory floor is running efficiently down to the machine level. Manufacturers who take advantage of this "missing link" have a better chance of scaling up their operations profitably.

The importance of mobility

Consolidating all this information won’t completely optimize your supply chain management without the ability to easily visualize it. Therefore a real-time and mobile-delivered view is so crucial. What’s the point in spending time and money to capture data if it isn’t readily available to those who need it, exactly when they need it?

Decision makers on the factory floor or in global headquarters need instant access to relevant information, and the collaborative power to communicate with or work alongside employees anywhere in the world.

It’s this kind of investment in technology that really has the power to change how businesses make their decisions. It can save time, it can save money, it can highlight where best to invest and where to make product developments. Together, this can’t be overlooked.

Get the right tools with Dynamics 365

Microsoft Dynamics 365 ends the artificial separation of ERP and CRM and makes it easy for employees to collaborate and even role-switch to engage customers or address supply chain management issues. Only Dynamics 365 unites the front office and the back office with a single end-to-end system for managing every aspect of your business, all backed by industry-leading enterprise cloud.

This means that manufacturers can develop at the pace and scale that’s right for them, while taking advantage of current investments such as existing productivity and technology stacks.

Inside Microsoft Dynamics 365: Guide for Manufacturers | Columbus US


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There’s no argument that these are challenging times for discrete manufacturers. The pandemic has brought with it a complex set of challenges, and manufacturers are facing a growing skills gap for workers, among other issues. With problems ranging from erratic supply-chain disruptions to employee shortages, charting a steady course can be harder than ever. Manufacturers need all the visibility, intelligent manufacturing processes and visibility to navigate in this business climate.
By 2023, digital transformation-enabling technologies and services are expected to touch the $2.3 trillion mark, according to a Statista study. Clearly, digital transformation in manufacturing is—and will be—the flavor of several seasons to come. Manufacturing companies are actively pursuing smart solutions to optimize their processes and output by leveraging next-gen technology. A key step is the adoption of an efficient manufacturing data and analytics solution—one that is capable of helping organizations take data-driven, informed business decisions.
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