Supply Chain Strategy with Spreadsheets
Using spreadsheets is a common way to manage supply chain strategy in an organization. While using Excel
for supply chain analytics can be a great tool, it falls short when you’re addressing real-world problems. When analyzing a complex system like a supply chain spreadsheets are ineffective and inefficient because they can’t capture the real world complexity. So analysts invest weeks, if not months structuring new supply chain scenarios in their spreadsheet model.
The Challenge When You Need To Compare Scenarios with Spreadsheets
When leaders get together to plan supply chain strategy, they often use these spreadsheet models to help analyze the outcome of a decision. Traditionally, they’ll use the models to support scenario comparison before they make a decision. However, if the leadership team asks a new question, like “what if we…?”, the spreadsheet becomes obsolete. The analyst has to go back to the model and spend days, if not weeks preparing to answer the new what-if question. This cycle goes on and on, delaying key strategic decisions. The reality is that spreadsheets are great tools, but they weren’t built to analyze and compare the complex scenarios that you face in supply chain.
Moving from Spreadsheets to True Supply Chain Simulation
Simulation is an analytics technique that helps supply chain teams to capture the complexity of their supply chain in a model. One of the ways simulation tools differ from spreadsheets is that they are built to capture the complexity of complex systems. In a simulation model, you capture the process, times, distances, variability, risks, and resource constraints over time. With simulation, you have a risk-free environment to model your supply chain and implement a solution to understand the profit, risk, service level, costs, trade-off, etc. of implementing something in the real world. This can save organizations time and money, and significantly reduce risk because simulation results can help you compare scenarios and make sure any change in the operation has an ROI.
Building a Simulation Model for Supply Chain Strategy
The time and effort to build a supply chain simulation model is dependent on the size and complexity of the supply chain, as well as the experience of the modeler. However, the process is always the same. At SimWell, we’ve developed a process over hundreds of models that we use for every project. You can access that step by step guide (free) at The Complete Guide To Simulation By SimWell
. We provide the training and coaching to help teams develop supply chain simulation models themselves with tools like anyLogistix
, and we provide turnkey consulting if you don’t have the time or people to do it yourself. Whether you build simulation models internally or work with a consultant, they should follow a process to build the model.
How does AnyLogistix Help With Comparing Scenarios and Supply Chain Strategy?
anyLogistix helps to create a simulation model, or digital twin of a supply chain. Once that model is developed we can compare the current state of the supply chain “Baseline” to the future state of the supply chain. Because anyLogistix is built to model complex supply chains and support supply chain strategy, analysts can spend more time analyzing the operation and responding to new what-if questions, rather than wasting days/weeks manipulating a spreadsheet. anyLogistix is a great business decision strategic tool. In today’s volatile world, simulation with anyLogistix gives supply chain leaders the data, and the confidence, they need to make the right decision.
Scenario Comparison Example in anyLogistix
If you’re making changes in your business or considering supply chain strategy, we can help you to compare scenarios with simulation. When you build a simulation model, you’ll have the tools and analysis to make data-driven decisions. Schedule a call with us today.