One sector that is of key importance to manufacturing in the UK and Europe is the machine tools industry, and the suppliers of this sector face some unique challenges.
Central to this are the highly specialised machines necessary for the manufacture of goods, which means that firms in this industry often have very demanding requirements for their suppliers. Therefore, machine tools supply chain firms need a high degree of flexibility and responsiveness in order to deliver their products to their customers.
One solution that’s becoming increasingly popular is the use of vending machines deployed on-site to customers, which provide all the tools and consumables they need to conduct their business. This has many benefits to users, as it makes it easy for individual employees to get access to the tools and consumables they need, and stock levels and the whereabouts of any parts are all tracked.
But keeping these filled with inventory is a challenge for suppliers, especially when dealing with complex and highly-specialised consumables. Manufacturing businesses will typically expect stock to be replenished rapidly to avoid the problems of disrupting production should inventory run out completely.
However, these firms may often require a large variety of items in comparatively small quantities, which means when it comes to measuring and tracking stock levels, there are a lot of different factors to take into account. This can cause serious administrative headaches as suppliers try to manage paperwork for many separate consumables.
Furthermore, there is the issue of who is responsible for items that are still in the vending machines. Even if they are on-site at a customer’s factory, they will often still be considered as belonging to the supplier until such time as they are checked out. This means they must remain on the supplier’s balance sheet, which can add another layer of complexity into managing accounts.
This is why suppliers of consumables to the machine tooling industry need a powerful, yet easy-to-use system for managing their inventory – and this is where NetSuite can help.
Please check out our related blog “How NetSuite can be used for accurate inventory management“. This short article explains how NetSuite can help solve many of these supply challenges.
Alternatively, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our experts.