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Author's profile photo Paul Pretko

Supply Chain Collaboration in Wholesale Distribution

The Wholesale Distribution industry isn’t immune to supply chain obstacles like the pandemic, natural disasters, trade tariffs, or product shortages. COVID-19 has caused disruptions to intensify and challenged distributors with, finding new suppliers, planning disconnects, and lack of visibility into inventory availability.

The lack of supply chain flexibility and agility have been exposed as distributors navigate the unpredictable and fluid situation around the COVID-19 pandemic.

Distributors desperately require supplier collaboration and improved information sharing. They need intelligence, flexibility, and agility across all supply chain transactions.

Mitigating supply chain disruptions and ensuring continuity requires full transparency into your supplier’s ability to deliver on time. While distributors can reasonably expect main suppliers to provide this transparency, they are struggling to get visibility into smaller ones.

The higher the transparency, the more real-time the insights, the clearer distributors are on their decisions, the more suppliers trust in the purchasing process.

Giving suppliers greater transparency can help transform the supply chain from disconnected to collaborative. A digitally connected supply chain lets those in the network sense and respond to demand changes quickly. Distributors can gain greater flexibility and visibility to reduce inventory buffers while increasing service levels.

A collaboration transformation requires innovative, cloud-based tools that enable you to:

  • Integrate your suppliers’ operations into your supply chain planning and execution in real time, regardless of location or ERP used
  • Work collaboratively both up and down stream with suppliers
  • Identify and respond to unplanned supply chain events quickly, before they impact your customers

The SAP® Ariba® Supply Chain Collaboration solution provides a digital link in the quest to drive an efficient supply chain network. It connects distributors and suppliers in a common plan, so distributors can orchestrate multitier supply chains to reduce inventory. Distributors can optimize intelligence spend management processes with powerful capabilities that include:

  • Sharing forecasts, orders, and inventory information with suppliers and obtain their responses in real time
  • Anticipate and resolve supply assurance problems quickly with collaboration dashboards that alert them to supply and demand mismatches

Supply Chain Collaboration in Wholesale Distribution clearly helps streamline and simplify the way distributors work with their suppliers, making it easier to do business in uncertain times.

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