by NUNO MALHEIRO, HEAD OF SALES
2020 was an extraordinarily demanding year!
A World pandemic that sent us home, closed our shops, stopped Global economy, destroyed transnational supply-chains, and exposed how dependent we are from some specific geographies and its Industry. We all know that major changes and developments come from major hits or disruptions, and 2020 will remain on the history books as the year who forced all of us (even the most skeptical ones) to embrace the need of going Digital, to better understand the impact of what we do on a daily basis in terms of Sustainability and also to rethink our Supply Chains and how beneficial it could be for everyone to make them closer.
At TINTEX the path for Digitization started way before Covid with a Rebranding, Social Media creation and ecommerce launched between 2018 and 2019, but like many others 2020 forced us to speed this process up with some projects we had on pipeline. Also according to McKinsey (https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/retail/our-insights/fashions-digital-transformation-now-or-never) Digitization can be beneficial by promoting cost structure adaptation, by Improving value chain efficiency (better, faster and cheaper) and by allowing companies to make Data driven decisions.
This last point has to be crucial for any player who wants to thrive in this new environment, and it has certainly been for us while decision makers and corporate policy implementation. If we separate (and simplify for blog length purpose) Data driven decision making in 3 key areas for Industry players, we can clearly understand the advantage of working towards a more digital approach:
1. On one hand we have all the decisions related to Production and Product Development/Management, and Digitization can be the answer for:
a. Inventory flows prediction
b. Stock Levels efficient Management
c. Demand patterns prediction
d. Planning and forecasting Peak and Off-Peak periods
2. On the other hand, Industrial players have transformed from pure product/material suppliers into the birthplace for most of the innovation in our field and, therefore, the source for inspiration and sometimes consultancy. That made us increase dramatically the number of interactions with clients further down the Supply Chain, like Designers and Brands that back in the day would not reach out to us, and that raises the need to improve our Customer Interaction and, therefore customer Satisfaction by:
a. Welcoming new leads better and manage them properly
b. Implementing a proper customer journey/experience
c. Nurturing client’s relationship with us so we can become a go-to company
3. Finally, more data and a presence further down the line in the Supply Chain forces any company who wants to have a long-term successful presence in the market to open up and be more vocal and clearer in terms of its Mission and the values it advocates. Also, the efforts to actively acquire new customers (Customer Acquisition) are more important than ever and there’s an increasing importance of digital platforms to do it taking into account the trend we have been discussing as well as the renewal of the workforce and increasing presence of Generation z members which attribute much more importance to social media and the correct values that companies stand for. So companies cannot neglect the importance of:
a. Creating Brand Awareness
b. Sharing their Mission and Values
c. Being coherent with these values in all actions and statements
d. Measuring their promotion activities
Source: Mill’s Sales flow, 2021
Thinking about the flow we can see in the picture above, we can only be successful if we adapt the technical know how we have acquired for decades now with the new position in the Supply Chain and the requirements our core positioning demands from us now. By supporting us in more efficient processes, better technologies, and more and more data, we will be able to succeed, and Digitization is the way to get there.