Software and accounting solutions ground businesses in uncertain times
Businesses use computer software to support their operations because of the streamlined production they spark. Given the mixed results of recent industry reports, operators of these facilities are likely to wonder how they can try to seize more control in spite of uncontrollable factors swirling around them.
The different factors associated with supply chain management have multiplied and diversified in recent years, as outsourcing, volatile consumer demand and the development of new products has pushed manufacturers to the point where a single plan of production is no longer adequate to fill orders sufficiently.
"Acute volatility has led to the need for creating a range of plan possibilities through what-if analysis, rather than the traditional goal of creating a single plan," according to a recent IndustryWeek webinar. "Sales and operations planning needs to evolve into a process in which teams can evaluate the full market potential and associated supply chain risks for multiple, varying scenarios."
Manufacturers do not need to look any further than the most recent Federal Reserve report on industrial production, which continued its recent up-and-down trend of the last few months. In June, production climbed by 0.4 percent, after dropping by half that amount in May, which replicates the pattern of March's weak numbers and April's slightly higher figures. Still, growth in June did exceed most economists expectations.
As industry-wide inconsistency in manufacturing and production continues to persist, organizations need to be able to inject some degree of predictability into their operations processes, which is where ERP software comes into play. These computer programs are able to manage inventory and production, so that improved cash flow and better efficiency can help these organizations weather the current turbulence.