What is Supply Chain Management?



Supply Chain Management (SCM) is the organization and implementation of consolidated business processes and procedures across the entire supply chain, from the sourcing of raw materials, to the manufacturing of a product, to the shipping of that product to retail outlets and consumers.

Supply chains are often comprised of dozens of different people, processes and organizations, and because of this, companies rely on SCM software to help them manage and visualize the flow of goods from one end of the supply line to the other.

What business activities are considered central to the supply chain and SCM?

Any business activity that deals with the movement of a product from its creation to its consumption is considered part of the supply chain process. This includes product development, production, distribution, financial management, logistics and IT, among other things. The long-term goal of SCM is to integrate and coordinate these activities into one consolidated, streamlined business function.

How does SCM increase supply chain optimization and productivity?

If a business is not using an SCM solution then it probably means it’s using multiple point solutions to manage quotes, suppliers, cash, inventory and other key areas. The ideal SCM solution will let you manage it all in a single application.

SCM software vastly improves the visibility of the entire supply chain process. It helps business operations make smarter decisions about inventory. It allows management to develop optimized metrics from previous orders and financial data that increase the supply chain’s overall productivity. And it assists customer service by giving them real-time access to track customer orders and answer questions on the spot.

SCM software is also a company-wide communication tool. It allows the many different departments within an organization to act as one cohesive and centralized unit. Efficiency is greatly increased when departments work together using the same data on the same platform. And because this data is added automatically in real-time, companies can make increasingly better decisions about their products.

My Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software is delivered as a SaaS. Can I do the same with my SCM?

Absolutely. More companies are choosing to run their SCM software in a SaaS format than ever before. Cloud supply chain management software gives employees the flexibility of working from anywhere—not just a computer that has software downloaded onto it. The cloud also increases collaboration within a company by automating data entry and making that data easier to find across various departments.

What are the benefits of FinancialForce SCM being on the Salesforce.com platform?

The Salesforce1 Platform allows FinancialForce SCM to run side-by-side with the award-winning Salesforce CRM software, sharing the same customer record from quote, to order, to cash, to fulfillment, to payment and back. The Salesforce1 Platform also makes customization simple. You can enforce workflows and approval processes that fit your business model. You can do things like create hierarchy and responsibilities based on sales representatives, geography, or products. You can also enforce business rules, discounts and markup schedules to confirm accuracy of pricing.