Though we haven't quite made it to having our groceries delivered by drone, the way consumers and retailers acquire what they need has changed radically, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. A quick look at a topic like "the future of retail" indicates that traditional models of the distribution of consumer goods are fast disappearing.
What this means for vendors of all kinds is that adapting to new methodologies in supply chain management-- how you store, stock and ship what you sell-- must change or you'll be left behind.
What's right for your distribution needs? A "Just-In-Time" modality or a "Just-In-Case" arrangement? Both have their pros and cons and in the current rapidly changing environment, it pays to know what to pursue.
Just in time (JIT) means storing just enough inventory to meet short term demand and no more. The advantages of this system are:
The reduction of waste and manufacturing costs
A drive to the supply chain efficiency
Less "dead stock," e.g., fewer items languishing in your stockrooms or warehouses doing nothing but ageing out of salability.
Less inventory to manage, fewer hours spent picking and rearranging stock to find what you need, and fewer returns to your distribution centers
JIT supply is data-intensive. It takes keen vigilance to keep on top of trends and demand, but with the right digital tools, you can predict the future-- at least enough plan ahead.
Just in Case (JIC) is geared toward eliminating delays in shipping for any reason. A delighted customer is one who consistently gets what they order on time or early, every time. With stock housed nearby, a retail outlet need not wait for next week's truck to deliver what they are out of.
By establishing hub and spoke distribution centers, JIC supply chain management gives outlets a reasonable chance to compete with the speed of bigger firms with more logistics resources. While it may prove more expensive to warehouse more stock at any given time, the lower likelihood of shortages may be worth it.
We know every company is unique- some have stable demand that fluctuates only slightly year to year, and others contend with wild swings in the same. Often there's a mix of solutions that work to keep things moving and satisfy your customers. Single source logistics companies can prove their worth in coordinating the complex nuances of your supply chain by tapping into resources you didn't know were out there.
Whether your enterprise is demand-driven or needs the insurance of always-available stock, talk to Port City Logistics about your needs. We're ready to be your Logistics Management partner.