Most retailers understand the rules of shortening the supply chain to increase the value of their own product lines. Now, these same principles should also be used in the process of technology purchasing to improve business, according to Chief Executive of Electrone Europe, Stuart Thorn.
Companies such as Dell and EasyJet have become masters at streamlining the market to its basics, by simply buying directly from the supplier. This idea of reducing the number of processes in the chain should also be used with the technology partner. Retailers will only have the ability to lower costs and increase flexibility by using the smallest number of technology manufacturers.
The basics of most extended supply chains lead to greater costs and less flexibility! By purchasing software from the source, you can give direct feedback to them. Think if your reseller has the influence when it comes to asking for software changes or additions. Also, if you are in need of specialist input terminals or devices to operate your stores more efficiently, are you able to influence the style and design of those terminals?
On one hand, greater pressure means high functioning, smarter, and more compact EPoS devices. However, your software can be customized for your specific needs in our current technologically advanced world. But, is the relationship you have with your supplier flexible enough to allow you to change the technology during the point of sale? Does it let you have a lower EPoS terminal in some stores, and well-designed, stylish looking units in another, or do you have to acquire a certain feature in order to handle problems and separate yourself from the competition?
Most would try to find a solution via their channel partner. However, they often end up to far removed in the supply chain to have any impact. Therefore, it’s critical that retailers use suppliers who in fact manage and own the manufacturing process. This will raise the initial design flexibility, as well as the ability to adjust to any new market changes.
Many times, retailers need to test new technology by buying just a few units. They also might need them on short notice. Only those that manage or own their manufacturing are able to make special adjustments on short notice. This is why keeping a stock of main, modular components at hand is so advantageous.
You want to ensure that you source right from outsource manufacturers who are as close to the production line as possible. Then you will be able to use their streamlined technology supply chain to offer better service, higher customer satisfaction, and differentiate your brand. And always be sure to stay close enough to the manufactures or vendors so your special needs are heard.