The right software solution can help supply chain managers overcome unique vitamin and supplement industry supply chain blockers.
Vitamin and supplement supply chain managers face unique challenges in overseeing the distribution of temperature-dependent products and adhering to strict regulations. It was already a game of margins to ensure product and brand integrity before new regulations came into play thanks to additional restrictions on movement came into play due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Vitamin and supplement supply chain procedures had to be redesigned to be more robust. At the same time, demand for health products surged, coinciding with a slowdown in production as various producers had to operate according to strict safety measures.
Here are the five biggest supply chain blockers that trip up businesses operating in the vitamin and supplement industry, with possible solutions to consider:
1. Inaccurate order processing
Inaccurate order-taking is the first potential supply chain disruptor. Correcting or resubmitting orders puts unnecessary pressure on your supply system and on all parties involved in order-processing, product send-off, and product returns. The impact on your bottom line and customer relationships can be significant when you’re selling temperature-dependent products.
Inaccurate orders can be reduced by giving your order-takers the right tools or software to capture orders and by always giving them clear visibility of stock inventory. Without these tools, customers may buy stock that isn’t available at the time, or a misunderstanding simply results in wrong product items being processed in orders.
User-friendly sales management software, with clear product specifications and pictures that are visible to both order taker and customer during transactions, can help to avoid this problem. If order-takers are salespeople who visit customers regularly, the easiest thing to do is to connect them to warehouse product information through a mobile sales app.
2. Product tracking
Inaccurate or no product tracking is the second potential supply chain disruptor. Losing visibility of information and inventory is any distributor’s working nightmare, especially with temperature-dependent products. When the margins these days are so close, can you really afford to be playing hide-and-seek with your products?
Having items scanned and immediately visible via an app, for even the most sophisticated inventory, enables managers to view orders, delivery status and inventory whenever they want to, wherever they need to.
3. Regulatory Hurdles
Regulatory hurdles have multiplied in recent times and are becoming more of a supply chain disruptor. As new health products rapidly enter the market, authorities are constantly looking to apply uniform, science-based distribution regulations. Keeping up to date with changing regulations affecting your distribution channels is critical to ongoing business success.
Having the right tools in place to ensure that your inventory management is ahead of the curve and that new regulations don’t hinder your supply chain, is crucial. The right sales and order automation software should provide easy access to information, visibility across the supply chain and reporting that will help you and your team overcome these difficulties.
These regulations tend to trip up those who least expect it. In the US alone, between 2007 and 2015, the FDA had at least two occasions every week where tainted products were found. These issues happened as a result of packaging or production dysfunctions. These could be avoided or otherwise recalled at a minute’s notice with the right tools and allow you to rest easier. Avoiding regulatory fines for non-compliance shouldn’t have to cross your mind and be your opportunity to take the gap and stay ahead of your competition.
4. Seasonal or situational shortages
Supply chain disruption due to shortages in animal or plant-based products is unavoidable and is due to numerous factors. Having temperature-dependent products adds even more pressure to your supply system. This can make capitalizing on those marginal situations seem impossible at the best of times.
Having control over your entire supply chain can be as easy as giving your team the software they need to capture reliable, accurate information that reflects in real-time, ready for you to access.
Knowing how seasonal and situational challenges are developing can keep you ahead of any problems that may arise, and ahead of your competitors. Having that access and allowing your reps to actively keep tabs on your inventory and stock in stores to cater to those seasonal shortages, will make life simpler, and less stressful, freeing up valuable time.
5. Wrong technology
Dealing with sharp demand shifts can be incredibly difficult when you have the wrong technology, ultimately hindering your supply chain. Struggling with low visibility on any of your numbers can be problematic and leave you behind your competitors. Huge product demand surges need to be met with the correct technology in order to capture all relevant information to help you going forward.
In order to tackle such shifts in demand, just having technology is no longer good enough. Having the right technology is imperative. Incorrect tech can be overcomplicated, slow you down and drive down your overall productivity. However, having a platform like Skynamo, tailored to your unique needs and software setup, will give you the winning edge you need.
Skynamo is the Field Sales Team Management software and Mobile Sales & Ordering app in one.
The mobile-first sales app and Field Sales Management software for businesses that do repeat selling and servicing to an existing customer base. Skynamo tracks and analyses sales rep activities and provide sales history, stock, pricing, and promotion information, so reps can make smarter decisions and sell more.