‘Logistics management will drive bottomline’

Tarun Narayan in Mumbai | Updated: Jan 21 2002, 05:30am hrs
It’s time for companies to trigger the bottomline with a close-knit logistics management initiative. Elaborating on the emerging business paradigm was Mr Pradeep Erinjery, director, Thirdware Solution Ltd., an enterprise solutions provider which delivers supply chain solutions to corporates ranging from Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL) in the consumer goods sector to Ford Motor Company in the automobile industry.

Says Mr Erinjery: “In the contemporary environment, focused factories for specific product-lines along with efficiently co-ordinated vendor-managed inventory will be the driving force towards delivering the bottomline for corporates”.

According to Mr Erinjery, one of the major reckoners in posting substantial profits for consumer goods major HLL was the innovative systems initiated in the logistics management function. “It’s the seamless interface of promotions, brand strategy and efficient enterprise resource planning that contributed to the company delivering in demanding times,” adds Mr Erinjery.

Citing the example of Lifebuoy Gold from the HLL stable, Mr Erinjery explains that if the product was being launched as an extended variant to the parent brand “Lifebuoy”, then the whole strategic process would be co-ordinated with promotions being simultaneously kickstarted along with replenishing the channel partners and an optimal inventory management system. Adds Mr Erinjery:” The challenge for FMCG companies to create business efficiency through supply chain would be to weave quality and efficient consumer response with low level of inventory as a wholesome deliverable advantage”.

Further, Mr Erinjery observes that the nature of supply chain domain that is being instituted would depend on the category slot and the strategy that the company has adopted to address the defined category.

“A sustainable differential can be initiated only when customised supply chain applications are delivered for a product cluster that is of low price and high volume type as different from high price low volume nature,”he notes.

The tactical management initiative, according to Mr Erinjery, for any supply chain process will be complete only when the whole process can chase brand mobility on the retail shelves. “This can be increasingly done by leveraging mobile telephony and SMS as part of an appropriately-linked supply chain process”, adds Mr Erinjery.

Dwelling on the challenges confronted by corporates playing on a globally level-playing field, Mr Erinjery says: “There are emerging markets and channels, currency fluctuations, rapidly decreasing product lifecycles and a global competition”.

The way forward, Mr Erinjery believes, is to execute converging strategies by knitting outwardly focussed improvement, process re-engineering and partnership planning that can ensure the right product at the right time and right place to provide the distinctive value enrichment to the end-consumer. “Logistic management is all about growth-centric bottomline management”, sums up Mr Erinjery.