The Danger of Siloed Information In Your Supply Chain

The Danger of Siloed Information In Your Supply Chain

March 29, 2021

We see it happen all the time. Your organization begins to grow and you find yourself in need of a platform like Quickbooks to handle accounting. Then you discover that a customer relationship management system really helps you keep track of your conversations and customer details. This continues as you find platforms that help keep your business running smoothly. But before long, your tech stack of four or five platforms becomes unwieldy. 

Suddenly, you find yourself manually transferring information from your CRM to Quickbooks. Or tracking down purchase orders to add to your vendor management system. Like a bad game of Telephone, your data risks the possibility of error every time you move it. Once straightforward data points evolve into something complex, unrecognizable, and unmanageable.

Below, we’ll discuss how siloed information that goes unchecked can have a significant impact on your supply chain. Keep reading to learn more.

Best of Intentions

While separately, the programs and platforms you use to effectively manage your supply chain might be doing a great job, But collectively, it siloes your data in different databases that don’t talk to each other. This siloed information causes decreases in output, efficiency, and performance.

When it comes to your supply chain, siloed data is often bad data. Are you certain you can trust all the data that’s been moved time and time again from one platform to another? Even if you’re absolutely sure there have been no errors in transfer, do you have the real-time visibility of information that relies on and informs the other silos?

Chances are, the answer is no. Trying to manage disconnected technologies with various communication tactics, protocols, and standards is not only unsustainable, but it will also make meeting customers’ evolving expectations that much more difficult.

Unintended Consequences 

Siloed information in your supply chain increases the probability of error and other disruptions. It makes processes more time-consuming, so by the time the good data reaches the right people, it could be outdated or flat-out incorrect. If your management is used to seeing siloed information, they are probably also used to the nagging feeling that they can’t fully trust it. Without total confidence in the output and analysis of your supply chain data, there isn’t a way to make solid, informed decisions. 

Of course, no manufacturing organization wants to make misinformed decisions, have poor inventory control, or lose efficiency, but those are the unintended consequences of siloed information in your supply chain. In the world of manufacturing, there’s no room for uninformed decisions. Disruptions abound—backed-up traffic slows down delivery, broken down assets cause downtime, a pandemic flips the whole industry on its head. 

Whatever the disruption, your supply chain needs data to quickly adapt. And those with the visibility and confidence in their data are the ones who will survive and thrive. 

man in a warehouse holding a tablet

No Visibility into Recurring Disruptions

Visibility into your operations across all links in the supply chain is essential. You always want to ensure you have a firm eye on your supply chain so you can spot any potential weaknesses. With the modern global supply chain only getting more and more complex, pinpointing the exact cause of recurring disruptions isn’t exactly straightforward. And despite the lack of simplicity—it’s still necessary.

It often requires you to have insight into every touchpoint, with real-time end-to-end visibility of your inventory, logistic operations, bills of materials for production, and much more. If you don’t have the means to pull it off, the likelihood of bottlenecks increasing will eat into your profits considerably.

Centralize Supply Chain Management

So, how do you break down the silos? The best answer is to make sure all the data from your various supply chain sources can talk to each other: finance, sales, service, operations. It’s even better if you have all that data in one centralized platform. Microsoft Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management offers real-time visibility and intelligence to move from reactive to proactive operations.

Get a complete picture of your organization’s data to improve inbound and outbound logistics, vendor management, asset management, and more. Make informed decisions based on unified data from across your supply chain.

Upgrade your supply chain to Microsoft D365 with Rangeline Solutions, a Nexer Group Company. We are a boutique ERP solutions provider that modernizes manufacturing and distribution organizations by leveraging our specialized supply chain and Microsoft technology expertise. We gather insight into how and why you perform operations so we can design and deliver a solution that offers you faster, more efficient business processes. Request a consultation today!