The Benefits of a Digitized Supply Chain for Your Business

Editorial TeamEditorial Team
August 2nd, 2021

In an increasingly digital world, it’s crucial that fashion brands wishing to meet their sustainability goals are equipped with a digitized supply chain to keep track of their processes.

As our world becomes ever more digitized, consumers are increasingly demanding speed, efficiency, and convenience. Current trends within the fashion industry include faster speed to market, greater agility as well as Optimizing inventory levels. However, companies are unable to achieve these goals without digitization and leaving manual processes in the past. A digitized system is defined as the application of digital capabilities to products and processes in order to improve efficiency, manage risk, and enhance consumer satisfaction. Although a number of supply chain initiatives have been put in place to focus on these key areas, retailers and fashion brands still have a long way to go. It seems that many companies have hit the wall when it comes to supply chain efficiency, as well as speed to market. Within the fashion and retail industries, fashion demands have exposed the critical flaw of organizational silos, which is the inability to effectively collaborate, innovate, and improve agility. Digitizing the supply chain helps to break down silo inventors by eliminating manual, or traditional processes. For example, replacing spreadsheets with digital systems that bring together stakeholders from around the world, and in turn, immensely improving communication and collaboration. All parties involved enjoy a free flow of real-time information, and an overall more efficient value chain. Without further ado, let’s break down some of the main benefits of a digitized supply chain: 1. Optimized Lead Times Companies that decide to digitize their supply chain will have overall better control and outlook of the inner workings of their own supply chain. Due to an increase in efficiency, the correct raw materials and production capacity will be made more regularly available at the right time. 2. A Demand-Driven Supply Chain Digitized systems allow for brands to adjust their products in the supply chain based on the demand for those products. In the conversation surrounding sustainability, this proves to be extremely useful as the demand for products is based on real-time sales information. Hence, allowing only for the production of best-sellers, as well as the reduction of unnecessary losses. 3. “Just-In-Time” Techniques Just-in-time or JIT manufacturing first came into play in the electronics industry. By utilizing this technique, fashion brands are able to put off critical decisions in terms of style and product quantities until the last possible minute. As a result, they can design styles much closer to the final delivery date, enabling them to use the latest style trends to their advantage. 4. Cut Down on Markdowns and Stockouts By adopting the previously mentioned methods like JIT techniques, lead-time optimization, and reacting to consumer demand, companies are more likely to attract customers. This leads to markdown and out-of-stock minimization. 5. Increased Cash Flow and Cost Management The faster your supply chain moves, the less capital is tied up in it. This is a crucial advantage of digitizing your supply chain management methods. Final Thoughts The main objective of any brand or company is to make its customers satisfied with its products or services. By digitizing the supply chain, you’ll get a better sense of what your customer’s needs and wants are. The digital supply chain is not a thing of the future, it’s already an integral part of the present and you should already be utilizing it. If not, you need to be able to ensure that your business continues to grow at a positive rate.