What use is the longest supply chain

Linear supply chains are turning into a logistics network

Companies work with suppliers and customers through their logistics chains. Individual solutions contrast with comprehensive concepts that cover all logistical processes.

Immature concepts, unsuccessful IPOs and price crashes have discredited the once highly traded New Economy. Today, companies in the IT industry are returning to values ​​such as profitability, investment security or a solid financial basis. The Walldorf-based software company SAP wants to help regain lost trust in the industry as part of a “New New Economy”. Companies as well as their customers and partners are to be supported in setting up and reengineering their business processes through a comprehensive solution concept for e-business and SCM (Supply Chain Management).

“With mySAP.com, SAP has positioned its platform for the e-business age on the market. The mySAP Supply Chain Management logistics solution is a central component, ”explains Peter Bickenbach, Manager at SAP Germany. MySAP SCM is a comprehensive solution for logistical processes. The e-business platform mySAP.com offers a package of solutions and services. “It combines the advantages of a complete platform with innovative technologies and our company's decades of experience with integrated business processes,” explains Bickenbach.

Technical background: MySAP.com is based on an open and cross-company architecture that supports the systems of Walldorf and those of other providers. Companies of all sizes can use mySAP.com to meet their individual requirements for e-business. The mySAP Supply Chain Management logistics solution is an integral part. Bickenbach: “This means that companies have an integrated complete solution at hand with which they can network, plan, coordinate and execute all logistical processes. In this way, companies can transform their sequential logistics chain into a cross-company and adaptable value chain. "

In addition, the solutions from SAP and third-party providers - inside or outside the company - could be integrated into mySAP SCM. Above all, this increases the value of the existing ERP system, says Bickenbach. Through the link with mySAP Customer Relationship Management, for example, the end customers are always in view across the entire logistics chain. Bickenbach: “The connection to mySAP Product Lifecycle makes it possible to involve suppliers in the product development process in order to bring products to market more quickly. By integrating mySAP Business Intelligence, the performance of the value chain can be measured and evaluated promptly. "

The mySAP SCM solution concept offers tools in four key areas of supply chain management: Supply chain planning synchronizes all logistics activities, enables quick reactions to changes and the optimization of forecasts, plans and processes. Classic logistics processing (supply chain execution) enables cross-company procurement, production and order processing and provides an overview of the entire logistics chain.

The tool networking (Supply Chain Networking) makes logistics chains web-enabled and supports the establishment of a cross-company platform with which the participants gain insight into the business environment of the other participants in order to enable seamless cooperation. The fourth area is coordination (supply chain coordination), which enables close cooperation with partners in the activities and processes in the extended value network, helps identify exceptions and enables faster reactions.

Under the banner of the New Economy, various providers in the wake of the SCM pioneers i2 technologies and manugistics have thrown so-called SCM solution modules onto the market without any real planning or execution functionalities being associated with them. "In order for a supply chain to really work seamlessly, companies have to open up along the supply chain and, for example, allow their suppliers to look into their warehouse," says Siegfried Muckenschnabel, Sales Manager at Siemens Dematic, a logistics consultancy in the SAP environment an essential requirement. In order to create this transparency for a supply chain or a supply chain network, the solution providers still have to do a lot of persuading the German decision-makers. HARALD LUTZ / mg

A contribution by:

  • Harald Lutz

  • Manfred Grotelüschen