A TraceLink and IDC study revealed that pharma companies with structured processes in place for collaborating on shared work with suppliers performed better than their peers when responding to the onslaught of supply chain disruptions caused by COVID-19.
These companies understand that fostering and supporting tight-knit supplier collaboration is one of the best ways an organization can improve supply chain agility, a game-changer in times of increased uncertainty and unpredictability. Through collaborative effort to ensure supply chain optimization, pharma companies and their supplier networks can deepen their and create network connections that help to increase resilience, improve the quality of products and business processes, mitigate risk, and encourage positive patient outcomes.
The advantages of supplier collaboration
Achieving high levels of supplier collaboration is critical for the success of businesses that depend on their supply chain to deliver products on time and in full. Effective supplier collaboration happens when firms work together to develop and execute strategies that not only improve procurement processes but also help them grow their businesses, innovate, improve quality, reduce risk and lower costs. Digital technologies like digital supply networks and network-driven multienterprise work management applications are emerging as the top tools for achieving these benefits and creating agile and responsive supplier networks.
Supplier relationship management teams that develop lasting collaborative relationships with strategic suppliers can improve operational efficiency, accelerate time to market, and better navigate today's rapidly changing sea of supply and demand.
Regardless of industry, organizations that focus on streamlining and digitalizing supplier collaboration have realized significant benefits like more effective supply chain planning and forecasting, better inventory management, and enhanced supply chain agility and resilience.
Learn more about building a more agile, resilient supply chain. Download the eBook: What You Must Know to Survive a Supply Chain Crisis: 5 Priorities from 4 Industry Experts.
The benefits of supplier collaboration for the pharma value chain
Pharmaceutical companies and their supply chain partners can benefit significantly by focusing on supplier collaboration. By leaving unstructured supplier collaboration tools processes behind—things like phone calls, emails, and spreadsheets—and instead leveraging structured collaboration across a digital supply network companies can identify and overcome obstacles quicker and avoid or mitigate the impact of supply chain disruptions. The result? Fewer drug shortages and improved patient outcomes.
As the pharma industry continues to embrace collaborative work management tools that run on digital supply networks, the end-to-end healthcare supply chain will grow more agile and responsive in the face of disruptions like those caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Fostering supplier collaboration with a digital supply chain network
There are two emerging technologies that are helping organizations facilitate higher levels of supplier collaboration across organizations and industries. One is the digital supply network, a cloud-based digital supply chain network that enables supply network partners to share data in real time without integration costly point-to-point systems integrations. The digital supply network is an essential technology for dismantling data silos, improving supply chain visibility, and enabling organizations to collaborate and innovate more effectively.
The second technology is multienterprise work management. This digital supply network-based software supports online supplier collaboration workflows, eliminating time-consuming, manual processes and providing supply chain partners with a simpler, more efficient way to share information, resolve issues, and proactively managing supply chains. Structured collaboration with suppliers using a multienterprise work management solution encourages supply chain agility and makes it easier for firms to build lasting, mutually beneficial relationships that can be a competitive advantage.
A digital platform for supplier collaboration in the pharma industry
With the use of outsourced services skyrocketing in the pharma industry, supply networks are growing larger and more complex. As a result, effective supplier collaboration is more critical now than ever before.
TraceLink's digital supply network and multienterprise work management solutions provide pharma and healthcare firms with a secure and easy way to improve supply chain visibility, eliminate inefficient manual processes, and enable stakeholders to coordinate on supply chain planning, management, and optimization within the same virtual workspace.
TraceLink's digital network platform helps teams collaborate more effectively, resolve issues rapidly, and identify and execute process improvements faster. And because TraceLink's digital supply network was designed specifically for the end-to-end pharma supply chain collaboration, onboarding suppliers, customers, and service partners is simple and painless.
Learn how pharma companies are building resilience to COVID-19-related supply chain disruptions. Download the IDC Whitepaper: Solving the Pharma Supply Chain Struggle.
Supplier Collaboration FAQs
What is supplier collaboration?
Supplier collaboration refers to the activity of buyers and suppliers working together to reduce costs, improve operational efficiency, develop and deliver better products and services, and generate additional value. It results in improved service levels and less exposure to risk and helps businesses adapt faster to changing supply and demand conditions.
How can our company better collaborate with our suppliers?
One of the best ways to foster supplier collaboration is through the use of a digital supply chain network and multienterprise work management software. These tools make it easier for members of a supply chain to share information in real time, generate shared intelligence, and work together to proactively plan and manage their supply chains.
What are the benefits of supplier collaboration in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors?
Increased supplier collaboration can help pharma and healthcare firms reduce costs, boost innovation and productivity, and get high-quality medicines and treatments to market faster. For patients, benefits include improved access to medicines and better patient outcomes.