Manhattan Associates: How to Beat Supply Chain Challenges

Manhattan Associates, a leading provider of supply chain commerce solutions, states brands must follow three steps to beat ongoing disruption

It’s been a tumultuous few years on the supply chain front. As the sector looked to mount a recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, a host of geopolitical crises and economic strife set in, disrupting trade and sending prices sky-high. 

Inevitably this has resulted in disruption for retailers and consumers, with the cost-of-living crisis, magnified by inflation and high interest rates, proving difficult for both parties. 

Last year, almost 24,000 vessels navigated along the passage linking the Mediterranean and Red Sea, carrying approximately 12% of global trade and 30% of global container traffic, according to The Guardian, and 40% of trade between Europe and Asia. 

These Red Sea shipping lanes, along with the Suez and Panama canals, remain utterly vital to the transportation of essential goods around the world.

Increasing tension in the Middle East, including militant attacks on merchant vessels in the Red Sea, is once again causing problems – and reminding us that supply chain resilience should not be taken for granted. In fact, the Kiel Institute reports that global trade declined by 1.3% from November to December as issues escalated.

With disruption showing little sign of abating, Manhattan Associates, a leading provider of supply chain commerce solutions, says brands must follow three steps to beat the permacrisis. 

Approach commerce with confidence

Today’s consumers have come to expect an exceptional shopping experience, meaning it’s essential that brands deliver a frictionless customer journey. 

This, according to Manhattan Associates, is best achieved by harnessing the latest technology

“In retail, customers are consistently upping the ante on retailers,” comments Craig Summers, Vice President, Northern Europe & MEA at Manhattan Associates. 

“When consumers enjoy a new capability offered by one retailer, they expect others to quickly implement a similar experience. Creating a single, seamless customer and associate experience with software that unifies online, mobile and in-store commerce is vital when providing teams with more inventory visibility, sales and customer preference data.”

Planning prevents poor performance

In a constantly-evolving, fast-paced environment for brands, creating as many efficiencies as possible allows more adaptability – preventing and mitigating crises. 

“Applying insights to inventory strategies across every selling channel your brand operates in is absolutely crucial to maximising profits and minimising waste in all its forms – time, money and environmental,” Craig goes on. 

“Solutions that provide predictive and autonomous optimisation of your global inventory network will benefit P&Ls and the planet, all at the same time.”

Consolidation and execution

Having a unified solution means brands can respond to issues swiftly and successfully. 

Craig adds: “The unification of technology is key to navigating increasingly challenging digital landscapes. 

By consolidating all distribution, labour, automation, transportation and yard management in a unified, cloud-native solution, you can ensure your supply chain execution continuously adapts and scales to meet your business needs and challenges.”

The permacrisis, by its very nature, won’t be going away anytime soon. It’s essential, therefore, that businesses build agility and resilience into their supply chain strategies in order to deliver continued efficiency, profitability and continuity during uncertain times.

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