Supply-chain efficiency depends heavily on the connection between the quote-to-cash and procure-to-pay processes, says Ash Abhyankar, servant leader at Conexiom.
Timely delivery of information through the order-to-cash and procure-to-pay processes is of paramount importance now, says Abhyankar, if a company is to be resilient in the changing world of supply and demand forecasting. To that end, a company’s C-suite and board must focus on simplifying those processes and making them responsive to changes.
Typically, a customer requests a quote, the supplier picks orders, and delivery follows. The latter requires order confirmations, agreeing to shipping notifications, and seeing that any changes made to it are accepted by the customer.
“So, tying and connecting the procure-to-pay side to the quote-to-order or quote-to-cash side has become an important element of supply-chain simplification and transformation,” Abhyankar says.
The key is to convert data into information in a timely manner and make operations more efficient to be able to react to the inevitable changes in the order-and-fulfillment cycle. “The value is in getting this information into your systems quickly 24/7, 365 days of the year,” Abhyankar says. “It has to be accurate, and the information needs to be available to key decision makers. There are a lot of manual processes that need to be automated if you’re going to be timely, if you want to be accurate and be able to respond quickly to any changes that are happening in the supply and demand side.”
In addition, Abhyankar says, reducing or eliminating manual processes means that time can be spent more productively on value-added activities.
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