The fashion and apparel industry is fast-paced and continuously changing with new technologies entering the field. The need for apparel manufacturers to adapt and manage successful supply chains is essential to growth in a highly competitive environment. Many companies within the apparel and textile industry have looked to ERP software to solve complex industry challenges.
You might be thinking, how can ERP software help to manage such vast amounts of data, processes and tasks throughout a diverse and complex apparel manufacturing set up?
Data Visibility in the Supply Chain
Poor visibility is one of the most common causes of errors being made within the apparel manufacturing industry. A company using disparate systems which fail to connect the entire business outlines a key challenge to align all areas of the business.
Data visibility throughout the supply chain is essential in achieving complete modernisation of the apparel manufacturing process. Visibility reduces the risk by allowing each of your employees at every stage of the production process to see accurate and up-to-date data which allows them to make better decisions and, in doing so, make less costly errors for the business.
Having good visibility will help to reduce errors being made throughout other processes, for example, ordering. If inventory data is inaccurate, an item may sell without having the resources or materials to fulfil that job, which can have an effect on your customer service ability and customer satisfaction.
Material Resource Planning (MRP) and Demand Forecasting
Apparel manufacturers can waste vast amounts of money each year on material consumption which has either been over purchased, and not used, or under purchased, leaving them unable to fulfil orders and complete products without buying additional amounts of the same material, which can sometimes come at a higher cost when purchasing smaller amounts.
Running a demand forecast identifies the demand for a given period and allows businesses to align other areas of their operations such as materials planning, resource allocation, and inventory to cope with predicted sales and fulfil orders on time.
Demand forecasting through ERP software utilises data to identify trends and patterns which enables a more accurate forecast to be produced. Using large amounts of data – from all areas of the business – allows software to accurately predict product demand at different times in the year, which may be seasonal or periodical, depending on the manufacturer. Identifying demand also allows material resource planning (MRP) to be conducted which helps to clarify the amount of material required to meet the given demand at that time.
Using demand forecasting within ERP software allows for all areas of the business to be connected so that the manufacturer can reduce the amount of money, resources and materials being wasted and therefore improve margins.
Warehouse / Inventory Management
Many apparel manufacturers have numerous product lines and many different variations, such as sizes and colours, which can become overwhelming to manage without a modern warehouse management system or inventory management capabilities.
Having disparate systems throughout the apparel manufacturing process means that information is not always correctly shared which is when errors begin to occur. Many apparel manufacturers can have issues fulfilling orders when demand is not aligned with current inventory levels, which leaves the business with no option but to delay delivery or even lose customers due to not physically having the stock, even though the system may have shown available stock at the point of ordering.
A common issue is that what a system, or spreadsheet, says you have in stock and what you actually have in stock are two completely different things. This could be down to a lack of connectivity between systems, or to manual data entry error. Managing inventory can be difficult and present a major challenge for apparel manufacturers not opting for ERP software to run their business.
ERP software for apparel manufacturers allows businesses to align and manage their inventory across the company with forecasting, production capacity and planning, ordering and much more to ensure that orders are fulfilled on time and over purchasing of additional, unnecessary stock does not occur. Not only this but at each stage of the production process, inventory is visible throughout the entire supply chain, allowing for more accurate data throughout and better decisions being made as a result. This reduces the number of errors occurring throughout the production process thus increasing capacity and the ability to deliver the desired products on time.
Interested to Find Out More?
At Syscom, we provide our own authored Apparel focused ERP system made for the Apparel and Textile industries. Our ApparelX software has proven to deliver desired results for textile, PPE, workwear, apparel, footwear and soft furnishing companies of all sizes. Designed to grow with your business, ApparelX is highly scalable and suitable for any sized business operating within any of these industries.
Used by some of the industry’s best and well-known names, ApparelX represents a proven, affordable solution requiring the minimum of maintenance and IT resource and offers significant business advantage with a rapid return on investment (ROI). Take a look at some of our case studies.
If you would like to discuss your options and find out more about how Apparel manufacturing ERP software could help your business manage its supply chain effectively, please get in touch with the team on 01384 344 244, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or submit a contact form below.