As per research by Research and Markets, the global SaaS-based Supply Chain Management market reached a value of US$ 6.04 billion last year. The findings document that the market is expected to reach US$ 14.49 Billion by 2027, highlighting a CAGR of 16% during 2022-2027. But why is the Supply Chain industry moving toward the adoption of SaaS increasingly?
Criticality of SaaS in Supply Chain Management (SCM)
Before this, let’s first understand what a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)-based supply chain management (SCM) is? SaaS-based SCM denotes an application that is used for cloud-based data management of multiple operational processes occurring throughout the supply chain. While the application guarantees enhanced order and inventory productivity and eliminate redundant processes, it also works as a system that automates the configurations of operational workflows based on the requirements.
Now the question is, what are the reasons for driving this rapid growth?
After the advancement of technology, everyone is seeking systems built on digitalization and automation principles. Thus, increasing digitalization is one of the reasons for the need for automated and AI-based techniques. Also, multiple innovations, including integration with the Internet of things (IoT), are acting as growth-inspiring factors.
Moreover, affording the newest technology is a costly affair, thus only enterprise-level businesses could afford it. However, SaaS-based technology solutions have made it feasible for all sizes of businesses to afford it by giving next-generation technology solutions at an affordable cost.
Importance of SaaS Platforms in Supply Chain Management for Retail Businesses
1. Innovative tech-driven approach
There are multiple tech solutions around the globe, offering AI-based software for you to access everything from anywhere instantly, from handling returns to accessing inventory snapshots to reviewing monthly order volume and more.
With such innovations, one can give power to their employees (Warehouse Manager, Sales Manager, Returns Manager, Picker, and Packer) to perform and manage all business activities effortlessly from anywhere to drive higher productivity, efficiency, and collaboration.
Another advantage is that you can access your entire backend through a portable device (mobile phone) from anywhere, minimizing disruptions in your absence.
2. Seamless and powerful integrations
The e-commerce integration software enables businesses to connect with other business systems, simplifying their business processes. From accounting to marketplace management to shipping and order fulfillment, there are different types of integrations that you can leverage.
With an efficient integrated system, you can boost productivity and scale to higher profits. Additionally, e-commerce integrations empower your brand to manage customers across multiple sales channels. With superior integrations support, not only does your chore of fulfilling orders on time get solved, but with ERP and POS systems, you can easily make the most of industrial use-cases and scenarios. Not to mention how same-day deliveries have become paramount in today’s age of digital era. With integrations in place, you can collaborate with shipping aggregators and allocate delivery as per the nature and type of your product. Additionally, online marketplace integrations allow you to organize your listings on marketplace famous in your region. You can efficiently manage your day-to-day activities, such as uploading new product details, downloading pending orders, printing invoices, generating labels, printing dispatch manifests, tracking orders and shipments, checking and updating inventory stock, etc.
3. Minimized operational discrepancies with complete automation
With the operations being automated and inventory flow being organized accordingly, you can reduce any errors that can come from processes. The question is, how? Imagine that you had to manually record your inventory inflow and outflow using a spreadsheet earlier. But due to the automation, your inventory count gets automatically updated through a cloud-based system. Would that not be easier for you to manage everything? This will not only reduce the chances of data duplications or any errors, but it will also give you a solid support system.
4. 360-Degree visibility of data due to centralization
SaaS has been enabling businesses to make the most of analytics to make a result-oriented decision, which is only possible if a regular performance analysis is done.
For example: With SaaS solutions providing complete visibility over the operations, you get notifications and alerts regarding where the order has reached and how much time it will take to reach your customers in real-time. Moreover, you can determine the highest-selling channel, highest-selling product, lowest-selling product, and more with extensive reports.
Additionally, actionable insights can be leveraged to enhance the overall performance of your warehouse/warehouses.
5. Cost-effectiveness with simplified processes
After deploying a particular technology in your warehouse, you will be able to define the workflows at each stage of a product. Moreover, virtual warehouse technology can give you the blueprint of your warehouse, due to which you can organize the overall layout, and optimize the space.
Talking about the robust features that some WMS providers offer, such as shelf management, batch management, and cycle count, can also minimize stock degradation while managing each SKU aggressively.
6. Reduce time by unifying the processes
With a unified interface, you get the chance to process the orders in bulk and ensure fast order dispatches with limited stock-picking time in the warehouse. The question is, how? When you have a centralized view of your order and inventory, you know what process to follow next.
This induces the ability to save time, but it also boosts the overall productivity of your operations.
7. Post-purchase experience
The post-purchase experience is as essential as the pre-purchase experience as it plays a crucial role in building a sustainable business. There are several post-purchase factors, such as the convenience of tracking orders, on-time delivery, and ease of customer service. They play a pivotal role in persuading customers while increasing their retention rate.
Additionally, the post-purchase journey begins with locating inventory and processing the order seamlessly. While selling on multiple online platforms, it becomes challenging to ensure optimum inventory utilization and faster processing. So what to do in that case? A well-defined warehouse management system specializing in multichannel order and inventory management can immensely benefit e-commerce and retail businesses. It lowers labor costs, enhances inventory accuracy, and improves operational flexibility while upgrading customer services and accessing real-time data.
A full-stack supply chain management system can empower businesses like yours to maximize productivity and alleviate error. As per Unicommerce’s in-house data and reports, brands have witnessed an SOI surge of 888% and GMV growth of 313%. While the average time to ship orders has reduced by 14%, customer-initiated returns have decreased from 5.2% to 3.1%.