ServicesSupply Chain

Leveraging an ‘Express Lane’ approach to trading partner onboarding

If 2020 was the year of supply chain disruption, then 2021 will be the year of supply chain restructuring and transformation. Supply chain leaders around the world have seen their operating procedures turned on their head to try and keep businesses afloat during the pandemic. 

European companies have had their patience tested even further with the perfect storm of the pandemic, BREXIT, and ongoing trade wars around the world. Supply chain leaders have had to introduce more flexible business processes as well as accelerate technology investments to help build resilience towards future supply chain disruption.  

A recent Manufacturing Outlook Survey from BDO said that 26% of respondents, the most responses to the question relating to 2021 priorities, would be investing in new technologies or infrastructure. It is safe to say that the bulk of that investment will be going towards cloud-based technologies. 82% of companies in the same survey said that they had experienced some form of production stoppage in the last 12 months, and in some cases, this will relate to suppliers going offline. 

For many years companies have been establishing dual sourcing strategies such that if one supplier goes offline for any reason then companies can fail over to the other supplier quickly. But many companies still do not have this process in place. In fact, as a result of the disruption in 2020, the BDO survey highlighted that 50% of responding companies would be identifying alternative suppliers as a backup in case they ever needed them.  

During 2020 many companies were asked by local governments to help with the manufacture of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) for the health care services around the world. From gin producers helping to produce hand sanitizer, luxury clothing manufactures producing medical gowns, and car companies producing ventilators. In each case, companies needed to work with new suppliers, and they had to onboard or connect to these suppliers quickly. But with limited resources how can companies seamlessly achieve this? 

Trading partner onboarding has always been a challenge for many companies, especially those companies looking to connect with 1000s of new suppliers as part of a new manufacturing project for example. But whether it is the pandemic, an earthquake or simply trying to get a product to market ahead of the competition, companies need a faster way to onboard new trading partners when the need arises. 

Step forward Enhanced Community Management Services from OpenText™, an ‘express lane’ to help companies accelerate the onboarding of new suppliers to support a key project. This is a dedicated offering, part of our Managed Services capabilities, that offers what can best be described as a white glove service to help companies in their time of need to rapidly onboard new trading partners. Depending on the number of suppliers, company size and integration complexity, this process would typically take one to two weeks per supplier once the agreement itself was signed. Enhanced Community Management Services allows companies to start onboarding new suppliers within just three business days. 

Whether you need to onboard trading partners as part of a supply chain restructuring project or to support the manufacture and distribution of vaccines, Enhanced Community Management Services can help to accelerate the onboarding of new suppliers and allow you to focus on your core business activities. OpenText™ Trading Grid™ operates the largest pre-connected community of trading partners in the world, with just over 1 million connected, and it connects to many of the largest manufacturing, pharmaceutical, retail and logistics companies. 

Some vaccines – such as the one being produced by Pfizer – require specialist cold chain delivery capabilities and our accelerated trading partner onboarding capabilities will allow companies to find and onboard the most appropriate logistics company to support this type of vaccine. Our global business network can help companies address the challenge of quickly restructuring supply chain operations by moving complex supply chain integration to the cloud. Companies can also leverage other technologies from OpenText such as IoT to monitor the location and temperature of shipments. 

Companies are certainly having to rethink their supply chain operations as a result of COVID-19 and those companies that can adapt their supply chains quickly enough will win new business and be better prepared for any future business disruption. Our express lane is now open for business and ready to help companies rapidly transform their supply chain operations. For more information on our Enhanced Community Management Services, please read our solution overview.

Mark Morley

As Senior Director, Product Marketing for Business Network, Mark leads the product marketing efforts for a suite of cloud integration, IoT and IAM solutions that help companies establish an end to end digital ecosystem to connect people, systems and things. Mark also has an interest in how disruptive technologies will impact future business environments. Mark has nearly 30 years industry experience across the discrete manufacturing sector.

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