Supply chain management is such a complicated web of factors that most companies choose to keep operations behind the scenes and unveil a finished product with an intense marketing roll-out.
But what if that’s backwards and an outdated approach to marketing? (Hint: It is.)
The complexity of supply chain management
There is no question that SCM can be deeply and frustratingly complex. Consider TechTarget’s definition of SCM: "the broad range of activities required to plan, control and execute a product’s flow, from acquiring raw materials and production through distribution to the final customer, in the most streamlined and cost-effective way."
With so much intense analysis at every step, the details your supply chain management (SCM) team considers can seem endless, and the impressive knowledge they hold is certainly not something most people can understand.
Or can they? What if that mindset – the one that thinks that your SCM is so complex that it wouldn’t interest or be able to be grasped by your customers – is wrong?
In fact, what if it’s so wrong that you are missing something important? Customers today want to understand your supply chain.
Transparency in your supply chain
A common misconception is that most customers are interested in a final product. Of course, your final product better be outstanding, but there are other factors fueling today’s buyers, business-to-business (B2B) customers included.
For a few years now, customers have been demanding more visibility into supply chains of the products they purchase. For example, they want to ensure sustainable practices around the earth’s scarce resources, to know where their food is sourced, and to confirm ethical pay and conditions for any laborers involved. B2B buyers are no exception. They want their vendors to be more than just a final product too, and are constantly searching for value outside the sales funnel.
Transparency with social media
What if you shared what fueled your daily SCM decisions with your customers, stakeholders, and suppliers? Not every last complex detail…but some of them, and the intangibles too:
- What drives SCM decisions besides cost?
- Who is your SC team?
- Where are you sourcing?
- Why do you do things as you do during production?
Transparency of SCM through social media outlets can give a look inside your company in a way that your customers are craving. Through social channels like Twitter , LinkedIn , and Facebook, companies are greatly enhancing their two-way communication with customers and sharing information with their stakeholders.
Of course, the benefits of social media to SCM don’t stop there.The supply chain needs social media for enhanced customer communication, increased industry education, and an ability to socially monitor the market. Social media has the capability to empower your supply chain in multiple ways.
According to a survey we conducted, the top reason that supply chain companies are choosing to participate in social media is to increasing the visibility of their company (95%). Don’t simply focus on your final product(s) and leave out your supply chain! When you make your supply chain transparent to your customers and stakeholders, everyone wins.