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ROLE OF IT IN

SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT

Introduction
IT plays an important role in retail management. It includes both hardware & software. Hardware includes computer's input/output devices and storage media. Software includes the entire system and application programme used for processing transactions management control, decisionmaking and strategic planning.

Need of IT
Information technology offers many opportunities for companies to cut cost and improve responsiveness to customers needs. Some of the positive points of IT enabled services are:
IT is comparatively less capital intensive. It is not location specific and can be undertaken from anywhere. It does not require expensive infrastructure facilities.

Uses of IT in SCM
Process Automation:
Automation of market sensing and CRM processes using IT will lead to reduction in costs, enhanced accuracy , lower processing time and better customer service.

Data Collection:
IT systems help in collecting vital customer related data which can be stored digitally and can be used when required for decision making.

Uses of IT in SCM
Process Automation:
Automation of market sensing and CRM processes using IT will lead to reduction in costs, enhanced accuracy , lower processing time and better customer service.

Data Collection:
IT systems help in collecting vital customer related data which can be stored digitally and can be used when required for decision making.

Uses of IT in SCM
Sales transaction data can be collected through Electronic Point Of Sale (EPOS) device or is feeded into a computer. It provides extensive & accurate sales data related to customer purchases, demand for merchandise, time & date of transaction, mode of payment and etc. Three elements of data collection are
Coding system Code symbology Data capture

Uses of IT in SCM
Coding system:
European Article Numbering (EAN) system is used for coding merchandise. It is administered by the EAN Association which was set up in 1977. EAN allocates 13 digit codes (EAN13) to manufacturers & retailers to identify their products. The first two digits represent the issuing organisation; Next five represents manufacturer; The next five identify the product and The last digit is a check digit to ensure that the code has been entered correctly.

Uses of IT in SCM
Code symbology:
It depicts the code in a machine-readable format. Barcode is one of such type. Scanner can read it in any direction. Snowball is one of the emerging symbology.

Data Capture:
The transaction data needs to be feeded into the computer at the point of sale. Laser scanner is most widely used for this purpose. Manually data can be entered in to the computer. Incase of use of plastic money by the customer addition data can be captured.

Uses of IT in SCM
Data Mining:
The data collected may be stored in a repository called data warehouse. A data warehouse is a computer system storing internal information collected from inside the outlet as well as external information collected from other organisation. Strategic information may be extracted from this mass of data using data mining. Data mining refers to extraction, analysis and interpretation of data in order to detect patterns of relationship within the data.

Uses of IT in SCM
Data Communication:
IT may be used to transfer data from retailer to supplier and vice-versa. EDI is used make these communication. Various data exchange categories are Intranet EDI Extranet

Decision Support System:


Helpful for retailers to plan, budget, forecast and choose appropriate locations. GIS is also used to help the SCM process.

Recent Developments in SCM


A new software programme developed by Ross systems Inc. called Supply Chain Planning which is used for demand forecasting, replenishment & manufacturing tools for accurate planning and scheduling of activities.

P&G distributing company and Saber decision Technologies resulted in a software system called Transportation Network optimization for streamlining the bidding and award process.
Logitility Planning solution was recently introduced to provide a programme capable managing the entire supply chain.