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A Digital Framework to Transform the Supply Chain

By Bernard Milian
The image depicts a modern, abstract staircase leading upward, set in a bright, white, minimalist environment. Ethereal, glowing lines and nodes, resembling a constellation or network, float around the staircase, creating a sense of connectivity and digital integration. Soft light illuminates the scene, adding a futuristic and dreamlike quality to the overall composition.

At our June 2024 user conference Luca Cicchiello, Corporate VP of Supply Chain at Hutchinson, a global company with sales of over €4.5 billion, testified:

“In our company, we’ve known for fifteen years how we should operate our supply chain: an end-to-end pull flow anticipated and configured by an S&OP process – but we were making very slow progress. We needed a tool, a digital solution, to accelerate and structure the transformation”.

Implementing software for the supply chain doesn’t necessarily get good press from company management committees – or teams in general. It’s often perceived as a long, costly, and risky process.

Most companies have in their collective memory the epic story of their last ERP project. It took a long time, mobilized a lot of resources, and got off to a painful start – I’m sure that speaks to you…

Here’s a selection of comments we’ve heard from prospective customers:

–         “Why do we need software to carry out a transformation or apply a methodology? Let’s start by transforming ourselves, and if it works, maybe we’ll tool up with software!”

–         “Before considering new software, let’s start by using our ERP system properly!”

–         “I’ve already done Lean with cards, DBR with Excel, MRP with our ERP, but it didn’t work, I don’t see what your stuff is going to do for me!”

–         “Can’t we do this on a limited scope with Excel instead?”

At the same conference, several customers – including Hutchinson, Macopharma, Bontaz, and Pilot Pens – testified that by implementing Intuiflow they had :

–         Profoundly transformed their supply chain in less than a year

–         Won over teams

–         Achieved tangible results – inventory, service rates, lead times

–         Achieved productivity gains

–         Enjoyed an extremely rapid return on investment

Why should you equip your supply chain transformation with a digital solution like Intuiflow? Why is it a key success factor?

Structuring the transformation

Implementing a software system involves a series of predefined steps and enables teams to take charge of the process in a structured way. Designing a suitable control model, cleaning up master data, and adjusting settings to gain confidence in the system – it all comes naturally.

Enforce a framework

Intuiflow is a pre-established solution, built based on best practices – it’s not a “no code” development solution that can be totally customized to tool your processes as they are – which encourages the deployment of best practices that will deliver tangible results.

Gaining team support

A solution that’s intuitive, pleasant to use, and provides the right visibility, without headaches, is a key factor in user onboarding and job attractiveness, especially with the new generations of digital natives who are put off by ERP screens.

Fit non-return pawl

How many Lean management initiatives, based on maps, physical tables, or Excel files, have disintegrated over time? By engraving processes in an application, we perpetuate their effectiveness. Remember the wedge on the Deming wheel?

Harmonize practices and deploy

Once the first scope has been implemented, it’s easy to show, demonstrate, copy-paste, and deploy on other scopes / other sites.

Benefit from innovations

A solution like Intuiflow is constantly evolving, benefiting from the practical experience of its user community – which means your teams can benefit from new opportunities for improvement.

Set the tempo, accelerate

In my career, spanning several decades, I have led numerous transformation projects – mainly to develop supply chain agility through Lean practices.

Unfortunately, in retrospect, many of these transformations took much – too much – time, and many eroded or even disappeared over time. New managers arrived, teams changed, principles were lost, and performance regressed.

My experience with Intuiflow is that you can carry out transformations in just one year which would have taken at least three years.

For example, we would have started with a “back to basics” initiative in the first year – squaring up the management of master and transactional data. This can be done in a matter of weeks or months when we’re spurred on by a digital solution.

What are we waiting for?…

Well, yes, no doubt you need a (small) budget and to convince the IT department – if you need help, let’s talk!

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