Break Through the Corporate Silos with DigitizationJune 21, 2019
The fun of shopping is that every store has a unique mix of styles and products to choose from. Each brand and retailer has its own preferences in terms of which items to sell and which target market to aim for. But if there’s one thing common to fashion retailers across the board, it’s the mass amount of information needed to run a fast-paced supply chain. Without an end to end platform that connects everyone in the value chain, companies are stuck relying on spreadsheets, fax and email. One leading footwear company, for example, previously sent hundreds of faxes every night to an agent in Hong Kong—from tech packs to sampling and costing information to sourcing logistics.
Manual processes such as these create corporate silos, which impede businesses from reaching their maximum potential. Instead of making sense of disparate systems, companies can reap the benefits of a seamless journey that improves cross-team collaboration and speeds time to market when they switch to digital.
Improve Cross-Team Collaboration
With vendors and factories located across the map, all parties involved are in need of a central communication hub where they can access the information they need. The specific features of workflow calendars, global collaboration and exceptions management can help orchestrate processes and teams to keep everything on track. Transparent calendars, available to everyone, support workflow and critical path management. Employees can even set up milestones on the platform to track progress over time. In real time, they can predict if an item will run late due to unexpected delays, keeping the entire supply chain up to date.
Through the global collaboration tool, supply chain managers create a ‘single version of the truth’ via a centralized portal where all communication about a product, material, purchase order or shipment are linked by style. No matter where you are, you can view your business’s full history in one place. Exceptions dashboards also facilitate improved cross-team collaboration. This tool allows users to define the conditions that will likely lead to problems or delays, and create alerts when they exist. When alerted, they can drill into the details causing the situation and alleviate the problem before it escalates and affects customers.
Speed Time to Market
Taking the spreadsheet route also slows down the most valuable component of today’s fashion brands: speed. Arguably the biggest risk factor in the supply chain, speed is crucial to retaining customers’ loyalty. Similar to a weather forecast, the more time that passes, the greater the risk that fashion trends, consumer demand and other variables will change. Supply chain executives must continually adjust, cancelling production of styles with weak sell-through or increasing production on items with higher-than anticipated sales.
In a disconnected, siloed and slow-moving supply chain, companies don’t have easy access to the information they need to make important decisions quickly. Under these circumstances, they must sift through mountains of emails, reports and spreadsheets to understand the critical issues that need attention now—and by then, it’s often too late.
NGC’s Andromeda overcomes organizational silos for faster, connected decisions
In the words of John Thorbeck, chairman of supply chain analytics firm Change Capital, “fashion’s over-reliance on spreadsheets, emails and manual transactions keep its analog supply chain unresponsive to a digital consumer.” As shoppers continue to shift their attention to digital, brands and retailers should do the same.
NGC’s Andromeda Cloud Platform® is specifically designed to enable the digital supply chain by bringing together all departments – Merchandising, Product Development, Sourcing, Compliance, Purchasing, Production, Quality, Logistics, Marketing and Sales – into a single cloud-based solution that connects vendors, suppliers and other providers. Andromeda® is enabling leading retailers and fashion companies to overcome the barriers of siloed systems and realize the benefits of a connected enterprise. With Andromeda, companies can react with speed and agility to optimize lead times, reduce expenses, improve quality and maximize company revenue and profit.
For more information, request a demo to get a first-hand look at how we can help your company reach its maximum potential.