As supply chains grow more sophisticated and global, they also become increasingly vulnerable to a wider range of risks, including disruptive events like natural disasters. Despite the increased risks, and the profound effect they have on business performance and shareholder value, a recent survey of more than 500 manufacturing executives found that only two thirds of companies have a supplier quality management system in place, and only half of the surveyed executives feel their existing system is effective. Companies that are without a system, or those that are relying on outdated tools, are at a major competitive disadvantage. The use of electronic supplier quality management software can help global companies create stronger, more resilient supply chains.
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A variety of internal and external forces are driving an increase in supply chain risks, prompting companies to seek out supplier quality management software tools that can help mitigate these risks. Internal forces include the need to improve efficiency and reduce operating costs. External forces, such as globalization and global connectivity, are also at play. For life science companies, these forces are compounded by increased regulatory oversight and customer demands for safer, better products. By challenging manufacturers to redefine their definition of acceptable supply chain risk, the aforementioned forces have propelled automated supplier quality management system solutions from an afterthought to a strategic business requirement. Regulated companies that fail to implement electronic supplier tools into their manufacturing operations are exposing their brands to greater, more frequent risks and negative outcomes like sudden demand change and margin erosion.
Take, for example, the ripple effect that an unforeseen natural disaster, such as a hurricane, can have on business performance and long-term brand value. Factories damaged by the storm will come to an abrupt halt, forcing supply chain managers to scramble, often unsuccessfully, to find an alternate supply source. Even if a suitable alternate source is identified, the inevitable delays in order fulfillment and subsequent lost revenue will cost the company dearly - in both revenue and reputation. One recent study found that companies forced to endure a publicly - announced supply chain disruption yielded 30 percent lower shareholder returns and a decline in customer confidence. It's no surprise that in many progressive companies, managers are beginning to recognize the importance of implementing a supplier quality management system to minimize the risks that will inevitably occur as a result of today's interlinked, complex supply chains.
The ongoing challenges involved with increasing customer expectations, emerging competitive challenges, and shorter product cycles are forcing companies to venture beyond traditional supply change management approaches, such as the manual or paper-based supplier quality management system, in favor of electronic supplier management tools. This is particularly true for life science organizations and other regulated manufactures that operate in environments where regulations and markets change frequently and rapidly. While such solutions represent an opportunity for manufacturers to move beyond dated tools and techniques, they also present them with another challenge: how to determine which supplier quality management software solution is best suited to meet their needs.
While there are many supply chain management systems on the market today, the most powerful solutions share a few critical attributes that they offer to their users:
MasterControl is a leading provider of supplier quality management software to regulated companies worldwide. Unlike less flexible solutions, MasterControl Supplier™ has been designed to integrate other enterprise systems quickly and easily. Furthermore, MasterControl allows users to create a unified method for managing all of their critical compliance requirements, from supplier and risk management to documentation and training management, enterprise-wide; this allows for a truly integrated approach to supply chain management.
Here are some examples of how MasterControl's supplier quality management system solution addresses the attributes mentioned above:
To learn more about supplier quality management software, please feel free to contact a MasterControl representative.