Real-time supply chain visibility

Despite well thought-out plans, many of the most important events in today's global manufacturing supply chain happen unexpectedly and without warning. Although manufacturing companies take great pains to ensure on-time deliveries and customer satisfaction through intelligently planned production programs and transportation strategies, it’s a real challenge for multi-variant industries like automotive manufacturing to make information available worldwide across multiple network partners in real-time.. The global manufacturing industry still has a lot of catching up to do when it comes to reacting to breakdowns, bottlenecks, and other production hurdles, especially in terms of information provision.

This is where the value contribution of real-time in an integrated supply stream becomes apparent. Whether it is planning strategy, material procurement, order allocation, or warehouse and container management, real-time insight into the supply pipeline through intelligent solutions and software can form the basis for more efficiency and productivity for planners and managers. The development and introduction of real-time capability offers manufacturing companies the flexibility they need to be competitive in a multi-variant industry.

Insight and visibility for all information

Real-time information not only enables manufacturing companies to see the current needs of customers around the world, but also helps them plan for or combat potential slowdowns or bottlenecks throughout the entire supply stream. Real-time windows on overall demand can also help companies identify trends or fluctuations in component part demand and adjust production programs or plant allocations before these fluctuations significantly impact productivity. For example, real-time capability can help a manufacturing company in Germany identify a downward trend in demand for parts from a customer in Mexico, reallocate materials and resources to adapt to the new situation. This minimizes the risk of serious overstocking.

Improved planning and management

Real-time information promotes more accurate and detailed planning in the short and medium term. Because insight into current demand can be viewed and analyzed as it develops, planners and managers can use this insight to create better production plans and projects in the near future based on current trend lines. Better overall planning strategies affect all touch points in the supply stream from transportation management to customer relationships. For this reason, greater planning agility is one of the most important competitive advantages.

Daily analyses and transparent corporate communications

With real-time information gathering, the days when planners and managers waited until the end of a month or quarter to review critical productivity and efficiency data are over. Real-time information enables planners and managers to analyze current data as it becomes available and distribute that data across organizations to promote better communication and collaboration. This real-time information also comes from the use of integrated, intelligent solutions and platforms, eliminating the need for spreadsheets and other manual methods of data entry and management.