Optimizing for growth
A successful and high growth e-commerce business that relies implicitly on an efficient, lean, and predictable supply chain discovered early on that their growth was outpacing their ability to scale. As the volume increased at every step of the supply chain, they could only throw people at the problem, and their staff was worked day and night just to keep the train on the tracks. The long, intense operating shifts meant burnt out employees, high attrition rates, and, ultimately, reduced quality in their supply chain. They needed to spot and resolve the inefficiencies that existed already, but they also needed to be able to identify new problems that would occur as they continued to expand.
Their supply chain was littered with different systems, interfaces, applications, and data, spread out across geographic locations and teams. People needed to spend a ton of time digging and mining for good information, often without success. Any insights that highlighted real problem areas in the supply chain and would lead to improvements were few and far between.
“Our supply chain operation is complex and every inefficiency impacts our bottom line. We have real issues we need to resolve today that we’re trying to understand, and at our rate of growth, we can’t even begin to forecast the issues we could have tomorrow.”
The answer for them was to provide the right people with the right information at every key point across their supply chain, driven by a uniform and consistent base of information, presented to them in a fashion that resonated with their slice of responsibilities, and colored with insights derived from analytic processes designed to spot outliers in the pipeline. The result was an expansive yet lean enterprise application infrastructure that tied together the disparate points of their supply chain and provided the ability to get laser focused on the performance and operation of individual points in the process to surface and remediate problems, as well as proactively identify future problem areas.
- Massively scalable data infrastructure that was able to ingest, organize, and make available all kinds of information from across the supply chain spectrum.
- Microservice-based architecture that fostered integration and support for legacy systems across the operation while providing a single access layer to stored and streaming information.
- Modular end user experiences that leverage information from different sources tailored to provide insights and information valuable to a given stage or set of team member responsibilities.
- Real-time alerting triggered by smart analytics and machine learning algorithms that pinpoint issues and get smarter as time goes on to better identify problems in the supply chain moving forward.
Improved ability to grow, innovate, and drive new revenue.
Enablement of growth
- The supply chain is able to outpace the success of the business and contribute by enabling future scale and growth, providing insight on how to do so in a more intelligent and cost-effective way.
- Staff is empowered for quicker assessment and decision-making throughout the supply chain thanks to the streamlined collection and availability of data and in-system recommendations for problem-solving.
Increased employee success
- Staff across the supply chain, from analysts to people on the warehouse floor, are equipped with powerful tools that enable them to fuel growth and be proud of their contribution rather than simply working to avoid failure.
Foundation of innovation
- They have a foundation that they can continue to innovate and build upon, ensuring that they can continue to keep pace with the scale of the business, and find other exciting ways to grow the profit margin.