Meet­ing de­mands of a chang­ing busi­ness land­scape

Philippine Daily Inquirer - - MARKETING PULSE -

Small to mid-sized com­pa­nies strug­gle to man­age their growth. As one’s com­pany grows, the owner or sole pro­pri­etor finds that mar­ket­ing is dis­con­nected from, among oth­ers, op­er­a­tions, cus- tomer ser­vice and sales. The typ­i­cal re­sponse is to hire func­tional man­agers which only adds costs in de­liv­er­ing a prod­uct. This is a ma­jor chal­lenge that Or­a­cle NetSuite hopes to ad­dress with its suite of in­te­grated ap­pli­ca­tions. Jan Pa­bel­lon, prod­uct de­vel­op­ment man­ager at Or­a­cle NetSuite, said that only when mis­co­or­di­na­tion and mis­com­mu­ni­ca­tion hap­pened that own­ers con­sider putting the proper process in place. He said Or­a­cle NetSuite’s key propo­si­tion was to use tech­nol­ogy to ef­fi­ciently man­age the var­i­ous as­pects of the busi­ness in one sys­tem. In a talk dur­ing the re­cent Sup­ply Man­age­ment Con­fer­ence and Ex­hibit held by the Philip­pine In­sti­tute for Sup­ply Man­age­ment International, Pa­bel­lon dis­cussed dig- ital trans­for­ma­tion and ways to get ready for the next wave of change af­fect­ing sup­ply (and de­mand) chains.

In his talk, Pa­bel­lon cites the chal­lenges that all busi­nesses— large or small, starting or grow­ing—were about to face par­tic­u­larly in in­dus­tries in­volved in sup­ply chain man­age­ment. These chal­lenges are brought about by the rapid pace of change within the en­ter­prise and the gen­eral busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment.

One of these chal­lenges, he said, came from “dis­in­ter­me­di­a­tion” which cut out the mid­dle­man.

“To­day, be­cause there are so­called e-com­merce mar­ket­places like Lazada, a man­u­fac­turer does not have to pass on his prod­uct to a dis­trib­u­tor. Tech­nol­ogy al­lows him to sell di­rect to the fi­nal con­sumer via on­line mar­ket­places so his mar­gins will def­i­nitely get big­ger.”

Pa­bel­lon also told his au­di­ence about the im­pacts on busi­ness of dis­ag­gre­ga­tion: “Where be­fore the trend was to deal with one big com­pany who did every­thing, nowa­days, you have verti- cally in­te­grated play­ers each one with a spe­cific spe­cial­iza­tion in de­liv­er­ing the goods. The en­tire man­u­fac­tur­ing process is be­ing dis­ag­gre­gated whereby the main con­tract­ing pro­ducer sub­con­tracts parts of the process to var­i­ous sec­ond par­ties. The chief chal­lenge in this case is co­or­di­nat­ing and or­ches­trat­ing the var­i­ous sub­con­tracts into a seam­less in­te­grated whole.”

Glob­al­iza­tion is now a mean re­al­ity, he said. Lo­cal busi­nesses must com­pete not only within their in­dus­try and na­tional bound­ary but also with for­eign play­ers which are likely armed with bet­ter tech­nolo­gies.

Tech­nol­ogy in the form of on­line mar­ket­places and ap­pli­ca­tions is also shak­ing up the lo­cal sup­ply chain and lo­cal busi­nesses need to adapt. This calls for dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion so the adopt­ing en­ter­prise can take ad­van­tage of the agility, fast ac­tion and in­tel­li­gence DX brings.

“Nowa­days, it’s about the fast beat­ing the slow,” Pa­bel­lon said. “Slow can be dis­rupted. Gone are the days when you man­age by gut feel. Now, you have data driv­ing de­ci­sion mak­ing.”

Any com­pany with­out a dig­i­tal strat­egy ( en­abled by dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion) is likely to be left be­hind. Re­spon­sive­ness to change is more im­por­tant than ever be­fore.

Pa­bel­lon said NetSuite has the tech­nol­ogy that can help busi­nesses keep up with the ac­cel­er­ated rate of change.

NetSuite is a uni­fied suite run­ning on the cloud. It gives com­pa­nies the tools to get them started in their dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion jour­ney. It has mod­ules for ac­count­ing, man­ag­ing sales or­ders, pro­cure­ment man­age­ment and sup­ply chain ex­e­cu­tion. Its de­mand plan­ning tools help align the level of in­ven­tory against an­tic­i­pated de­mand.

NetSuite’s cus­tomer re­la­tion­ship man­age­ment mod­ule can track com­mu­ni­ca­tions with cus­tomers via email, in so­cial me­dia and other au­to­mated ways to do mar­ket­ing cam­paigns.

Pa­bel­lon as­sured con­fer­ence at­ten­dees that NetSuite could help small and medium-sized en­ter­prises re­spond to the new chal­lenges.

“Some small busi­ness own­ers may think that the ex­ist­ing pro­ce­dure can still han­dle the sit­u­a­tion with stock cards or with Ex­cel. But when the vol­ume of trans­ac­tions in­crease and there are more em­ploy­ees or branches, co­or­di­na­tion over­head sets in and that’s when our sys­tem can make a dif­fer­ence,” he said.

He added that Or­a­cle NetSuite ap­pli­ca­tions meet the re­quire­ments of all types of in­dus­tries. Still, the com­pany tries to fo­cus on par­tic­u­lar in­dus­tries and be the best so­lu­tion in those sec­tors such as whole­sale dis­trib­u­tors, man­u­fac­tur­ers, re­tail­ers and ser­vice com­pa­nies, in­clud­ing peo­ple who sell time like con­trac­tors, con­sul­tants and en­gi­neers. In each one, it can pro­vide for mi­cro-ver­ti­cals or sub-seg­ments like beauty and well­ness, health care and fash­ion.

Pa­bel­lon said he was bullish on the fu­ture of NetSuite in the Philip­pines and else­where.

“Two years ago, we were ac­quired by Or­a­cle. Now we’re un­der­tak­ing this mas­sive international ex­pan­sion and we’re also in­vest­ing in more in­dus­tries and more ver­ti­cal so­lu­tions.”

PA­BEL­LON

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