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The supply chain shake-ups of the past few years have shown companies just how important it is to have the right tools on hand. When rapid change occurs, fast-growth businesses can turn to their purchase order data to find ways to build resilience and capture opportunity.
For instance, when suppliers are facing unpredictable lockdowns, automated fulfillment approvals can help quickly secure vital SKUs. As logistics bottlenecks persist, analytics that include POs can help unsnarl supply chain delays by focusing on speed at the order level.
By integrating your purchase orders in the Flexport Platform, you can unlock solutions, speed up operations, and focus on growth.
In this blog, we’ll look at how Order Management can help.
End-to-End Supply Chain Control
One of the key benefits of Flexport Order Management is that it provides everyone on your team with end-to-end visibility into your entire supply chain.
With tracking capabilities starting all the way upstream, it’s easier to plan, collaborate, analyze, and optimize:
- Messaging lets customers communicate with suppliers and other stakeholders at the purchase order level. Conversations are saved and are visible with bookings for quick reference when needed.
- PO and SKU-level visibility shows exactly what goods are contained within any shipment. This level of visibility supports rapid decision-making at all stages of the shipment lifecycle. Companies can now sell goods in transit and reorder more quickly.
- Configurable rules improve booking workflows. Date management helps ensure orders are booked on time. Booking approvals allow consignees to maintain order accuracy. If rules aren’t followed, bookings are flagged for approval before they ship. Automatic email and in-app alerts support thorough exception management.
- Enhanced reporting supports multiple ways to slice PO, SKU, and shipment-level data for a comprehensive view of the supply chain. By assembling data points that are too time-consuming to track manually, customers can measure vendor performance against internal KPIs.
This gets even more interesting when it’s directed towards growth. For companies optimizing their supply chains to expand into high-value retail partnerships or new geographies, the speed and intelligence offered by Order Management can help fast-growth companies grow even faster.
Order Management for Speed and Insight
Within a few order lifecycles, you can quickly develop a robust purchase order library, enabling fast duplication of recurring orders or an easy reference point for new inventory decisions. This helps protect your supply chain in times of volatility and helps expansion plans form and run more smoothly, when a growth-related lift is on the horizon.
With supplier messaging integrated into PO workflows, logistics managers can eliminate labor-intensive emails and spreadsheets. Miscommunications, like those stemming from outdated email attachments, are reduced when all stakeholders have a single source of truth—even after the order is booked and becomes part of a shipment.
Exception management becomes easier, because orders reflect real-time availability. As a result, buyers can feel confident about directing suppliers to make changes based on unexpected or last-minute circumstances.
When an exception occurs or a supplier messages for another reason, notifications appear in the platform or, if desired, push to email. Your team can then respond, allowing communication and collaboration to happen in real time. Replies appear inline under specific POs.
PO data can help foster efficiencies or cost savings by informing other areas of the supply chain, too. Order data populates product libraries, which can contain customs categorizations for different regions. Combined with new vendor performance reports, supply chain directors can adjust sourcing, based on a variety of factors.
The result is end-to-end control for a more agile, responsive, and high growth-potential supply chain. For more on how Flexport Order Management can help you streamline operations, reach out to Flexport.