In any distribution and manufacturing facility, expert supply chain optimization is a must. This includes keeping a tight control over inventory, keeping software up-to-date so that everything runs efficiently, and minimizing operating costs such as those for transportation and distribution. If you want your supply chain to run professionally and reliably, below are six tips that will help make that happen.

1. Keep the Lines of Communication Open

In any distribution centre, communication within departments is a must. This means that all of your departments need to know everything that is going on at all times, including purchasing, distribution, sales, manufacturing, and so on. All team players have to be on the same page month after month, year after year. Otherwise, things can go awry rather quickly and no one will know what to do to remedy it.

2. Keep Your Planning Efforts Up-to-Date

Instead of Excel spreadsheets, more and more supply chain managers are using cloud-based options for all of their supply chain processes. With these options, you can create better forecasts to help make better decisions, keep better track of your inventory, and determine which operations need to be implemented. In short, it presents a better way to keep track of what’s going on and lets all other department heads know what’s going on as well.

3. Become More Transparent Overall

When it comes to techniques for supply chain optimization, transparency is crucial. This includes not only tracing raw materials and finished goods while they’re moving along the supply chain, but also both internal and external transparency.

Internal transparency refers to making sure the purchasing, sales, distribution, and manufacturing functions have a flow between them regarding information and materials, while external transparency means making sure the supplier within the network is always visible. Only by using both internal and external transparency will your supply chain performance be improved.

4. Realize That Change Is Inevitable

Regardless how long your company has been around, it is good to keep in mind that change happens, which means you have to change as well. Thanks to aspects such as more technological advancements in software, machinery, techniques, and so on, it is wise for you to keep up with such advancements so your company isn’t left behind in all of the excitement.

Resistance to change can kill a business fairly fast, so steps such as using beacons in production to monitor your manufacturing processes and using geo-fencing so that truck deliveries optimize time slot management better can mean your company will keep up with the times and run more efficiently year after year.

5. Keep Your Company as Eco-Friendly as Possible

There are things all companies can do to keep their carbon footprint as small as possible. A few of those include reducing CO2 emissions whenever possible, using raw materials in a sustainable manner, utilizing alternative energy sources, and making packaging environmentally friendly. You don’t have to add these steps all at one time, but it is important to make sure your company is as “green” as possible.

These are yet other good ways that your supply chain optimization efforts will produce results that will be long-lasting and effective.

6. Use Your Networking Capabilities Wisely

As most people know, running a business and making sure it grows and thrives requires the use of consistent networking, especially when it comes to social media. Using blogs, podcasts, and various social media pages is not only a great way to make sure the customers know what you’re all about, but it can help your communication efforts with other department heads become more efficient. Too much information is rarely a problem when it comes to communication between one department and all of the rest, and fortunately most of this can now be accomplished through the Internet.