/ Gartner SCC Diary, Part 3: People, Data and Systems Aren’t Sustainable Without Each Other

Our third and final blog post from Gartner’s Supply Chain Executive Conference reflects on another major theme across many of the sessions: the power of collaboration.

Colgate-Palmolive’s Ann Tracy opened her presentation with an important piece of context: Up to 70% of data gathered at manufacturing sites goes unused. That sounds negative, but the reality is that it’s a perfect analogy. In today’s digital landscape, you can’t use 100% of your data; it just isn’t viable, or necessary. Instead, it’s about using the analytics that you do have in a realistic manner.

What is a realistic manner? In his session, Gartner’s Managing Vice President, Steve Steutermann, talked about a 17-stage hierarchy of metrics companies should focus on. But on a team level, Tracy argued that it starts with collaboration. Data needs to be accessible across each function of the business—from senior leaders on down to more junior staff—and ultimately add value for the end user.

In other words, data needs to be democratized. As most organizations today exist in silos, becoming democratized takes time. But it is becoming an increasingly bigger priority for supply chain leaders because getting products to customers quickly has become paramount.

Colgate-Palmolive’s starting point was to create an SC Design and Analytics Centre of Excellence—a hybrid, center-led team that would connect data sources and foster innovation. With the people in place, Colgate-Palmolive then put the systems in place. The tools allowed planners to test models, measure impact in real-time, and gather insight from other parts of the business. As a result, this team is able to create more robust forecasts that reflect inventory strategies, send alerts when issues are on the horizon, and provide insights that can be accessed by anyone.

This change has also had a cultural impact. Through live dashboards, employees are empowered to take action when they see issues arise. They are also able to better understand their own numbers and performance.

That accountability is key, according to Steutermann. There is no point in having a forecast that isn’t then measured—or basing measurements on sales outputs, which tend to be biased. Setting KPIs, providing teams with the tools and understanding to achieve them, then tracking progress on an ongoing basis are important processes often missing in end-to-end supply chains.

Where should people start if they want to tackle this problem within their own organization? Steutermann’s analysis was that “without the right tech investment, you aren’t optimized and you aren’t synchronized.”

Steutermann’s insight aligns closely with Domo’s approach, which is that organizations need to link supply and demand in order to understand the customer in the middle and ensure transparent reporting throughout.

Synchronizing the two creates collaboration, and collaboration starts with data. Domo offers a variety of simple, intuitive ways to get the right data to the right people, from live data dashboards with predictive alerts to internal reports delivered across the organization.

Learn more about how Domo can support your supply chain and empower greater collaboration here.

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