As the key value driver and revenue stream for most businesses, the order management process is a natural starting point for process improvement initiatives. Since even a small positive nudge will result in significant benefits, this is often the most straight-forward business case to build.
Getting the right products to the right place in the agreed time is key to customer satisfaction and retention. Since order management is so customer facing, it is also the process where any slip-ups or inefficiencies will be most visible to external stakeholders. For this reason, companies usually invest heavily in this process with significant manpower and systems. In order to handle complex customer demands, the process can get quite advanced, with multiple best-of-breed applications supporting specific steps.
This complexity is a challenge for any end-to-end program like continuous improvement or operational excellence since there are multiple data sources and often intricate cause-and-effect relationships. Gathering and analysing the necessary data to untangle the root causes behind any issues is a time consuming and largely manual effort.
How Agilon helps
Presenting complex process flows in an easy and visual way is the core concept of Agilon, so order management benefits greatly from the transparency this brings. By seeing the entire end-to-end process flow exactly as it is executed, you will have a whole new level of clarity. Any variations between units, regions, customer groups, product lines etc will be much easier to detect, and the gaps and problems that are often caused by hand-offs between different teams and systems will be readily apparent.
In order to be systematic about improving order management, the actual consequences of any deviations has to be understood so that improvement projects and initiatives can be prioritized. This is where Agilon’s analytical capabilities come in. By showing the quantitative impact on the key metrics, such as additional lead time or reduction of OTIF %, Agilon makes it easy to decide where to focus to reach maximum improvement.
Last but not least, the continuously refreshed analyses allows managers to stay on top of any new emerging issues as well as validating the efficiency of any changes made to the process.
Due to the strategic importance of order management, there are multiple important metrics to track and improve. In our customer engagements we have helped with both internal efficiency and external quality metrics like:
- Lead time
- On time in full (OTIF %)
- First time right %
- Customer satisfaction
- Days sales outstanding
- Inventory stock levels