The Right Way to Deploy SCM Software

You work in a fast-paced industry that cannot afford inefficiencies or downtime that will slow the production process or hinder delivery times. At the same time, you rely on automated processes such that use SCM software to help you gain the visibility you need into your complete supply chain.

While you likely have a list of different needs you have to meet in selecting the right SCM software, have you added sustainability and green IT to the list? You may have assumed that the concept of “going green” applied to reducing paper use and driving electric cars and while you would be right, you would also be leaving out a huge part of environmental responsibility where your company plays an important role.

The right way to deploy SCM software is to apply green IT principles and ensure the sustainability of your SCM Software.  Why is this important? One of your primary goals in implementing SCM software is to streamline operations so you can cut costs and pass those cost savings onto your customer – while also strengthening your profit margins.

When you compare SCM software to find the right solution for your environment, you need to consider all associated costs, such as hardware investments and changes to your infrastructure. If the SCM software you are considering requires an expansion of your data center, which will draw more power, require more cooling and increase your energy consumption, your cost of operation will increase.

The good news is that a number of vendors do offer sustainability solutions for SCM software deployment. Companies such as SAP, IFS and SAS are actually leading the trend for sustainable solutions, yet there are still growing pains within this space. For instance, the industry is still lacking all necessary standards and methods for what should be tracked and reported for sustainable performance.

As the industry continues to evolve in its approach to sustainability and green IT, there are a few things you can do when selecting your SCMsoftware for implementation. Keep in mind that this software integration is actually a valuable tool to cut costs and waste – which is a primary focus in green initiatives. Best practices for SCM software integration include leveraging the tools you already have, while also leveraging technology for communication between your stakeholders and suppliers.

In the process of selecting your SCM software, leverage your initiatives when talking with partners and customers. A sustainability approach in your processes will present a strong value proposition to those considering doing business with your company. If you make such initiatives a priority in your SCM software deployment, you will be able to maximize the benefits promised in the solution and extend them beyond the supply chain.

When evaluating vendors in the SCM software space – whether they are a big player like SAP or a smaller company with only a local presence – approach the process from the perspective of your customers to gain an understanding of the value they will appreciate from the SCM software. At the same time, for each vendor, read their supply chain management review, and beware of providers who promise sustainability, but cannot demonstrate the capability in hard or soft numbers.

Finally, when selecting the right SCM software for deployment within your environment, be sure it is scalable while also maintaining sustainability. Your focus likely involves growth over time and SCM software that loses its sustainability as you grow is worth much less at implementation. Assess the value over time and according to your strategy and you’ll deploy the right SCM software the first time.