Supply Chain Management (SCM)

What Are SCM Systems?

Supply chains move products from their point of origin to their point of distribution. In the past the various processes along the route from manufacture to eventual consumption involved discrete, specialist services and entities. With the progress of computerised systems, supply chain management (SCM) systems have increasingly automated and optimised SCM processes. Supply chain operators have been able to scale accordingly and have the capacity to meet ever growing global demand. Early supply chain IT systems formed disjointed solutions in a largely fragmented distribution network.

Contemporary SCM systems comprise software solutions that help manage, simplify, speed up and oversee flows of goods, services, data and finances from points of origin to final destinations of those goods and services.

Modern Supply Chain IT Systems

Supply chain activities can be anything between product development through to distribution transport, but can also support resource sourcing, production, inventory and warehouse management and shipping logistics. End-to-end SCM systems digitally connect all stakeholders for easier collaboration during product creation, order fulfilment, tracking and tracing and virtually all back office supply chain related systems across industries.

Manufacturers, wholesalers, transportation and logistics providers and retailers can now flexibly integrate their systems, with configurable permissions and functionality. Machine learning allows for more efficient product and process design, prediction of future demand, risk alert automation and improved efficiency. Sophisticated software solutions free up staff time for more creative and strategic activity and offer insights in real time of daily business process.

Every supply chain management activity you can identify has had software developed to simplify and enhance those processes; as time has gone on, however, software as a service (SaaS) providers have increasingly streamlined software for simpler integration and co-operation between historically fragmented systems.

The internet has empowered customers to demand smarter and more flexible practice. Now consumers and supply chain networks can interact with products and suppliers at any stage of the value chain, transforming how everyone does business and obliging companies to respond to a more demand-driven economy.