Seven Keys to Making a Build-to-Order Business Model Work
By: Ryder 10.14.2013
Today, titans of technology and consumer packaged goods are jumping on the customization bandwagon. And for good reason. In a world where customers are in the driver's seat, customization is no longer a "nice to have". It's an expected offering.
To make customization work, consider these seven secrets of a successful "build-to-order" supply chain:
1. Customize later in the supply chain
Delay product customization until much closer to the point of sale.
2. Manage inventory with agility
Keep basic products in domestic warehouses, and wait to make them "shelf-ready" when retailers identify demand trends.
3. Speed response time
Do what it takes to fulfill orders for customized products in five to seven days or less.
4. Postpone assembly
Assemble products at the last possible moment, whether it's installing software, changing product colors or features or adding power cords.
5. Finalize and deliver products from a domestic warehouse
Have detailed pick, pack, and ship capabilities ready to roll to fulfill complex orders.
6. Customize more products in smaller lots
Make sure you have the right manufacturing layout for your warehouse. Cross-train employees on multiple tasks. Harness technology to do this quickly and consistently.
7. Automate, streamline and escalate using ERP
Leverage ERP technology to fulfill small, specialized orders. With ERP tools, you can monitor complex process and products to the component level.
Can ERP technologies and tools help you launch a successful build-to-order business model? Product completion centers can enable customization at the end of the supply chain.