Keeping up with the volatility of the market is no easy task. When you feel like you understand the changes, you might wake up the next morning to encounter something drastically different. These shifting dynamics bring about unexpected disruptions—like changes in levels of demand—impacting your ability to effectively manage your inventory, satisfy your customer needs, and ultimately your bottom line.
In IDC’s 2022 Global Supply Chain Survey, they identified that “lack of visibility and resiliency to see necessary changes in time to react effectively” was the most problematic and unaddressed deficiency in modern supply chain management and inventory optimization. Changes in customer needs and customer demand are happening as you read this, but lack of visible data might prevent you from realizing these changes in time to act on them.
To stay on top of these frequent changes in demand, it is imperative that organizations evaluate their business model and develop the ability to adapt in real-time. Specifically, organizations that can implement more continuously aware, dynamic, and automated inventory management systems create a significant competitive advantage to increase market share.
Lack of visibility fuels siloed data
Lack of visibility into how changing market conditions interact with your inventory has a clear and distinct impact on your supply chain management. It prevents you from noticing changes in demand across multiple sales channels, and how well your current stock levels and locations are suited to satisfy it. Moreover, it can have a significant effect on your e-commerce models, hindering your ability to stay on top of supply changes and reflecting them in your online inventory.
Supply chain teams often have visibility into global supply chain shifts, but the data is often siloed and inaccessible to other team members. Consider financial analysts and product managers that must keep up with the changes in the price of their raw materials to ensure overall profitability and optimal decision-making. Individuals in these roles often have delayed awareness of changes and have no easy way to evaluate the resulting impact on their margins, whether positive or negative. This creates a domino effect: if your product teams are unable to access this pricing information in real-time, marketing strategy teams might then struggle to provide up-to-date messaging to potential customers.
Even if business teams could access real-time events, little to no training in coding becomes yet another wall to climb in their efforts to perform data analysis. New technologies are constantly emerging, but business team skill levels often lag behind the speed of these changes.
Benefit from events, no matter your role
Instead of waiting for supply chain teams to forward reports with operational data (which often take too long), what if your financial analysts could directly gain insight into what is going on so they can make more immediate operational decisions.
Consider a situation where the price of a material used in production dropped after you closed negotiations with your supplier. You were unaware of this since the supply chain teams only provide this information in quarterly reports. If you had access to real-time pricing data, you could receive immediate notification of drops in prices and take earlier action. For example, you could renegotiate a supply contract to keep business inventory costs low.
With IBM Event Automation, an analyst can use real-time events to identify business situations in a user interface that doesn’t require any coding. This brings operational visibility to the forefront; even line of business teams without a technical background can detect when a business is overpaying for materials used in production. For example, you could build an event-driven flow that detects whenever a supplier’s real-time pricing drops 10% below the price paid.
In addition, teams can perform cost/price analyses in real time, turning these changes into insights. Data that was previously siloed can now be used to optimize the organization’s pricing strategy, improve customer experience and customer satisfaction, and positively impact profit margins.
In an instant, these analysts can have a full picture of what is going on within the organization, something that would not have been possible without simple access to real-time data. It can provide important metrics and customer insights, paint a strong picture of the customer journey, and help analysts stay on top of changing market dynamics, just to name a few possibilities.
Act in the “now economy”
Knowledge is power, but it must be used to your advantage and faster than ever before. Our digitized economy requires speed: leveraging the right information at the right time. The inability to act fast might result in lost revenue, lost opportunities, and damaged customer relationships.
The now economy requires us to be focused on what is going on with our businesses in the present moment. The present moment comes with opportunities, which unfortunately often get lost in the amount of data organizations generate. Unforeseen economic disruptions, shifting market trends, and rapidly changing customer behavior all have the potential to drastically affect your business initiatives—unless you can stay on top of them. In addition, digital transformation initiatives have created the proliferation of applications, creating data siloes.
Our increasingly digitized world has skyrocketed customer expectations; our customers know what they want, and they want it now. To address these expectations, it’s important to put this information in the hands of those who need it, such as market research and data analytics teams, that can leverage data in the moment to build a truly customer-centric organization.
Put automation to work for your business
IBM Event Automation is designed to help organizations and stakeholders become continuously aware by making business events accessible directly to those who need to use it. It can allow you to empower users from all areas of your business to identify and act on situations in the moment, helping them avoid getting lost in algorithms, heavy code, or disparate data sources. Check out this video to see it in action.
Help your business build automated workflows that adapt and respond to changing market dynamics in real-time. Take action now and learn more about IBM Event Automation or sign up for this webinar to dive deeper into how IBM Event Automation can enable business analysts to easily work with events and generate insights for greater operational visibility and efficiency.