The procurement cycle in the supply chain is the product of a system that has grown organically through the years, along with the company. Procurement is an area where companies tend to implement legacy systems and processes that are rarely reviewed, overhauled and improved.
This is particularly an issue within the electronics manufacturing industry, where procurement activities are often manual, time-consuming, labor-intensive processes. Ordering and inventory management are conducted using outdated processes including manual supplier review or excel spreadsheets which require hours of employee effort to complete and update for accuracy.
Updating and improving your procurement system may seem like a daunting task – the sheer amount of information that must be input and updated from different, non-integrated systems is overwhelming. However, improving your procurement cycle offers many benefits including:
- Reduced fraud and waste
- Controlled spending and improved transparency
- Faster business cycles
- Increase employee engagement and morale
- Better planning and forecasting
Supply chain professionals considering updating procurement processes should consider:
Many procurement activities and documents can be standardized, making automation a beneficial opportunity for electronics manufacturing professionals to leverage. For example, e-procurement software can be used to create purchase orders, assign numbers, and forward to the appropriate personnel for approvals. RFP and RFQ processes, along with generating bill of materials (BOM) can also be automated in part or in full, releasing employees from manual data entry tasks.
EDI software, or APIs that enable data interchange between business partners and dissimilar systems to streamline processes and help to eliminate the need for paper processing and storage systems.
Integrating your company’s inventory management system to work with e-procurement ensures that suppliers and manufacturers have the most accurate and up to date inventory information including product information, price, and inventory level. This streamlines the supply chain by allowing for quicker speed to market.
4. Data Analytics
Using an updated e-procurement system means that data can be stored in a single, centralized location. This creates the necessary source of information for advanced data analytics. Data analytics can be used in procurement to create reports and benchmarks for spend, compliance and forecasting, setting effectiveness metrics for procurement and the supply chain.
5. Integrated Systems
A procurement cycle that is optimized to integrate with, or communicate with other business systems including inventory and warehousing, accounting, and EDI allows for even improve data collection, analytics and forecasting.
When a company improves an outdated procurement cycle, it can streamline processes, a reduce fraud and waste, improve transparency, and a gather data that can be used for benchmarking, analytics, and forecasting to improve business processes throughout the supply chain.
The Orbweaver Platform is built to help electronics manufacturing organizations eliminate manual, outdated, and inefficient processes through automation. This platform automates the PO, RFQ, and RFP process, streamlining the procurement process and speed to market while saving your company thousands of hours previously spent on manual document generation, data entry, and process management. With less time spent on redundant tasks, your employees can focus on generating more business and improving customer satisfaction.
Orbweaver’s data science feature, Analyze, not only gathers data but also mines it to produce insights and flag business opportunities that would otherwise be missed while processing of millions of parts, RFQs, and POs.
Connect with an Orbweaver electronics manufacturing expert to discover how eliminating outdated procurement cycle processes and collect data that can improve inventory management.