Demand forecasting, inventory replenishment and transportation management all need collaborative supply chain management. Why is it that collaboration seems to fail a large part of the time? The truth is collaboration is about people. Ultimately, people are the key to success. Here are a few tips for making sure there is a true sense of collaboration along the supply chain.
Include Operational Staff in the Development Phase
When you’re just starting to develop collaborative supply chain management efforts, all of the partners along the way should be allowed to interject their perspective of the processes. When everyone understands the process from the other point of view, it helps identify potential problem spots, facilitates a collaborative exchange and encourages communication. Everyone understands the objectives.
Remember the People
Companies don’t collaborate; people do. You may need to employ some human resource strategies to facilitate and manage relationships along the way. This might require training, open communication and lots of involvement. Focusing on people issues will help ensure collaborative efforts can continue.
Include Support and Operational Personnel
To avoid negative responses when things don’t go as they were planned, integrate a variety of viewpoints in the development stages. Without open communication, there can be a perception that others are just over-complicating a job or process. Unless your operational personnel is committed, they are likely to sabotage strategies. Many managers run this risk if they don’t include people who will be doing day-to-day tasks in the collaborative supply chain management processes.
Sometimes, collaborative relationships are misunderstood. Some think of them as being a long-term contract. They aren’t. Collaboration really is about people. People issues are significant and important to successfully be able to collaborate with partners along the supply chain. It’s about people, not just collaboration.
Want to learn more about implementing collaborative supply chain management? Visit the Demand Solutions website to speak with a knowledgeable professional.
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