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5 trends disrupting the traditional wholesale distribution model

Multichannel Distribution Specialists

Integrating Wholesale Distribution alongside In-Store, Online and Machine-to-Machine to let today's multichannel businesses increase efficiency and reduce costs while achieving flexible and agile control of the supply chain.

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Archive for March 2012

Is the time right for “Made in the UK” again? Find out with NetSuite

29th March 2012

Ever since European imperial powers first pursued agricultural products such as sugar, tea and rubber, global trade has relied on economy of scale and low labour costs to minimise total production costs.

This has remained a cornerstone in the industrialised age of manufactured goods; the most recent wave saw manufacturing migrate from developed western nations to the tiger economies of Asia-Pacific. China with its vast labour resource occupies a commanding place in the story of accelerating globalisation.

However, the choice to source products or components from the lowest cost labour economy should no longer be automatic because the logic that supports this accepted wisdom is breaking down.

Chinese manufacturing costs are on the up; Apple manufacturing partner Foxconn recently raised salaries 25% for some Chinese workers, highlighting a trend of increasing labour costs across China. While the cost of manufacture may be the price that catches the eye, the smartest wholesale distributors have a handle on the total landed cost (TLC), which factors all the costs of bringing goods to buyers’ doors.

Rising fuel costs and market over-capacity are driving up international shipping costs from Asian ports to North Europe and the Mediterranean. UK import duty and import VAT may exceed 25% or 30% for some goods.

This week Budget 2012 carried a resounding ‘Britain open for business’ message. So, is it time to repatriate manufacturing back to the UK? It may be a little too early right now to move the whole operation, but it may work for local consumption… How can you tell unless your supply chain management system gives you the 360 on total landed costs?

NetSuite’s cloud-based ERP enables its mid-market wholesale distribution customers to get a complete handle on total landed costs. BlueBridge One is a leading UK NetSuite solution provider specialising in custom-fitting powerful NetSuite online enterprise software tools to the specific needs of each customer.

If you think making better strategic decisions about configuring your supply chain could boost your business performance, click here and register for a 14-day FREE trial of NetSuite.

NetSuite ERP cloud-based solution gets you ready for tomorrow’s challenges today

29th March 2012

The word ‘chain’ implies linearity, but the supply chain of today is more interconnected than this; in a globalised environment characterised by commoditisation, wholesale distribution is much more likely to resemble a net. It is generally accepted that networked supply offers greater resilience, leaving wholesale distributors less susceptible to supply side risk.

It is not, however, without downside. Globalisation spreads the net far and wide, inviting risks in many forms. Extreme weather in Thailand; a volcano in Iceland; a tsunami in Japan; geopolitical upheaval across the Middle East; threats with the potential to destabilise supply may appear suddenly and unpredictably. Who knows what tomorrow may bring?

A networked infrastructure invites complexity and undermines the ability to manage suppliers through simple processes. Complexity is further increased by sustainability, compliance and the demands of fast moving markets.

Ultimately managing suppliers with simple processes and legacy systems is inadequate and inefficient. In the worst cases it creates a sluggish business that is unable to respond quick enough to keep in step with change. Yesterday’s supply chain software systems may force customer organisations into technology ownership, leaving you stuck with a computing model that is inefficient and delivers poor value.

NetSuite ERP is cloud-based and lets today’s growing and midsize businesses exploit the cost efficiency and service flexibility provided by online solutions. With CRM and eCommerce ready to plug in, NetSuite provides the flexibility to provide the functionality required to implement a multi-channel eCommerce strategy.

NetSuite provides the end-to-end capability and business agility that wholesale distribution needs to stay on top of an increasingly challenging operational environment. NetSuite connects up customers, workforces, suppliers and partners to create scalable and highly mobile business operations that are quick to react to any change in domestic or global markets. Get better prepared today for tomorrows’ challenges with NetSuite cloud-based ERP.

Start getting ready for tomorrow today. Register with 3 Star NetSuite solution provider BlueBridge One for a free trial. It’s online so there is nothing to download or install. Click here to register for the 14-day FREE trial.

Why juggle with your supply chain when you can manage it in NetSuite

21st March 2012

Increasingly, devastated high streets up and down the UK are populated with those best able to tough it out - the big brands, or those with deep pockets or the clout to negotiate debt restructuring. Many smaller chains, independents and family run businesses that have been clinging on by their fingernails just do not have the economy of scale to compete. Call it what you will - ‘low consumer confidence’ or ‘a lack of spending power’ - what ever the euphemism, it equates to one thing - there is just not a lot of cash to go round.

The business cannot afford to underperform because it is handicapped by uninformed or reactionary decision making. For instance, you cannot correctly price and protect margin if you are unable to factor in all the elements of the landed costs of a product. Similarly if you cannot control the ability of sales people to discount then margins inevitably slide.

For many businesses the core issue is efficiency, the ability to do more with less. In wholesale distribution the need is for insight into what is happening across the supply chain. It is the need for visibility, agility and centralised management control.

BlueBridge One’s NetSuite solutions enable wholesale distribution businesses to effectively manage the supply chain rather than just juggle it. NetSuite lets you get a handle on the business from end-to-end and includes supply chain and inventory management, order management, shipping and fulfilment, revenue management, employee time and expense management.

Most importantly, NetSuite provides seamless integration of financial data across all departments, giving you access to enterprise-wide real-time business intelligence - allowing you to rapidly make better and more informed decisions.

It does all this without making any demands on capital investment - it does not need to be bought, installed and maintained on-premise. BlueBridge One custom implements NetSuite cloud based ERP to wrap the solution you need with a compelling value proposition.

If you need to make sure that your margin is not eroded by the inability to make informed decisions because you cannot see what is clearly happening, click here and register for a 14-day FREE trial.