Transforming Supply Chains is Key to Enhancing Manufacturing Operations

30 November 2022

Sunthar Supparmaniam, Credence’s Vice President of Supplier & Application Modernisation, shares how manufacturers can gain greater visibility across their supply chains for better efficiency.

At TM One’s LEAP Forward Manufacturing 2022, enterprises that are keen to fast-track their transformation learned more about virtualised cloud-based services, how to leverage digital networks to modernise legacy processes, accelerate workflow efficiency, and improve their cybersecurity.

Sunthar Supparmaniam from Credence, TM’s cloud and digital services entity, shed some light on Credence’s supplier and distributor management solution to help manufacturers gain wider visibility across their supply chains. This article summarises the highlights from his talk.

Introducing Credence to the World

Launched in July 2022, Credence is a new cloud and digital services provider powered by TM Group. Leveraging strategic partnerships with the world’s leading service providers such as AWS, SAP, and Oracle, Credence opens up a global talent pool of domain and tech experts, delivering a new breed of digital transformation solutions for Malaysia.

Credence provides specialised market offerings within cloud, SaaS, analytics, digital upskilling, and managed services with a focus on crafting curated solutions for industries such as manufacturing, energy, healthcare, BFSI and the public sector.

Through its diversified portfolio, Credence aims to accelerate Malaysia’s digital transformation process by helping businesses understand their unique technology landscape and provide solutions to suit each business priority.

With the added value of highlighting risks and rewards through advisory and delivery services, Credence offers the right guidance coupled with targeted solutions tailored to each business challenge.

Partnering with Arteria to transform Malaysia’s manufacturing industry

In building the right solution for Malaysian manufacturers, Credence has struck a country exclusive partnership with leading supply chain management and fintech player, Arteria, enabling access to its’ extended financial supply chain platform – FinessArt. 

“FinessArt enables real-time collaboration which extends the power of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) to suppliers, transporters, sub-contractors, warehouses, sales teams, and multi-tier distribution networks,” Sunthar shared during his presentation.

“By digitalising business requirements from procurement to distribution, FinessArt allows full and complete visibility of supply chains and drives data-driven decision making to the next level.”

FinessArt to Enable Greater Supply Chain Visibility

Through FinessArt’s digitalisation solutions and full visibility to supply chain management, Credence is enabling the next step of modernisation in the manufacturing industry’s end-to-end processes. Built on existing SAP platforms, the expansion of an ERP solution designed to target and integrate every aspect of the supply chain journey will create more opportunities for a variety of functions available for manufacturing principals.

As noted by Sunthar, the Core ERP functions that SAP platforms currently provide covers a range of services such as Core Finance, Material Management, Financial Supply Chain, along with Sales and Distribution – tools that are essential for a principal manufacturer’s visualisation of their current supply chain. The addition of FinessArt to the SAP platform allows the integration of further management tools beyond core ERP functions, allowing them to tap into Upstream, Downstream, Banking, and Logistics management functionalities and data. The introduction of these functions of FinessArt are roughly grouped into three distinct target areas, run by the SupplierPortal, DealerConnect, and DigitalBanking branches, aimed at providing visual coverage over the entire supply chain journey concerning manufacturing principals.

Figure 1. Finessart’s ability to provide a comprehensive visual coverage of the supply chain

By identifying these target areas for principals and increasing supply chain visibility, the integration of FinessArt allows engagement with suppliers and provides data-driven analytics and data-backed evidence to continually improve supply chain efficiency.

Key Features of FinessArt’s DealerConnect and SupplierPortal Platform

What is in DealerConnect?

FinessArt’s DealerConnect allows principals to connect seamlessly with its distribution network, from primary sales with distributors to tertiary sales with retailers. After a successful onboarding with distributors, manufacturing principals will access a host of automated functions and data available at their disposal to manage and track the progress of anything related to their products.

FinessArt’s order management system has the following capabilities: 

  • Create and track electronic orders, claims and returns.
  • Management of order documents for PO, invoices and goods’ receipts.
  • Generates integrated dashboards and reports to help track overdue and incoming shipments, stock movements and order status.

These processes allow for dealers to focus on product selling through targetted planning and dealer FOS management. These functions, accompanied by streamlining financing with dealers, also allow better visibility backed by data-driven reports to better capture the efficiency and effectiveness of each process. By reducing turnaround time with faster collection and automated processing, principals can identify key target areas to boost demand. This is done through the provision of information and insights generated by the integrated reporting and order management system.

FinessArt also extends its visibility range to secondary and tertiary sales with retailers through its network management capabilities. After onboarding retailers on to the platform, the data available to principals will allow them to take control of the FOS, by enabling:

  • Geo-tagging outlets’ performance.
  • Tracking regulatory forms, permits, and inventory.
  • Expediting of route planning, invoicing and fulfilment, and secondary schemes and returns.

The ability to extend the expedition of resource flow throughout the distribution network via the use of insights and information generated from distributors’ systems can help manufacturing principals focus on building demand for customers. Information and insights generated from the full visibility gained can help them understand what is missing, how to improve their business processes, and the peak periods or trends when they should boost sales.

What is in SupplierPortal?

FinessArt’s SupplierPortal features integrate the upstream network of supplier management. These features allow manufacturing principals to:

  • Directly meet and track their sources of production.
  • Track specific data and performance of suppliers, enabling them to compare sourcing, shipment, quality, stocks, and finance, creating a reverse auction effect.
  • Increase spending management efficiency through analytics, along with a PO history and schedule to gauge reliability.
  • Create advance shipment notifications and invoice uploads paired with supplier performance and rating to expedite a faster turnaround.
  • Efficiently scale up or scale down business processes to meet demands.
  • Allow efficient tracking and options for manufacturing principals through an integrated report and dashboard viewing page, similar to DealerConnect

By synthesising the features and benefits generated from DealerConnect and SupplierPortal, FinessArt provides a one-stop platform that offers full visibility and functionality to manufacturing principals in their entire distribution network and their supplier relations.

Why This Matters to Manufacturing Principals

Integrating FinessArt on existing SAP Business Technology Platforms (BTP) allows for complete integration with SAP suppliers and dealers. This cloud-based platform is able to store and transmit data across different manufacturers, providing information and insights on the onboarded and integrated suppliers and dealers within the distribution network.

By being fully integrated on a cloud-based platform, FinessArt is able to merge the SAP UI5 as the front end with the SAP Cloud Connector to backend SAP ERP while also providing the opportunity to secure real-time calls with embedded firewalls in place. Through its operation on a role-based access system with authentication using the SAP Cloud Identity Provider, FinessArt can provide ease of access by operating remotely and on-demand. 

With Arteria’s vast network of over 400 satisfied customers across verticals spanning varying industries, Credence and FinessArt’s platform will be able to connect over a million supply chains and channel entities. This could potentially generate upwards of USD 43 billion in commerce. This offering to modernise a manufacturing principal’s supply chain from end to end by owning, manipulating, and monetising current data presents a dynamic opportunity for them to continually expand their business process efficiency and target growth through data-driven analytics. A full view of the distribution network with complete integration with SAP suppliers and dealers could continually open opportunities for manufacturers to diversify revenue streams such as financing credit loans, among others.

Credence is positioned to offer customers localised advisory capabilities and the best returns on their technology investment. It provides organisations the ability to embark on their digital journey with greater predictability, lesser concerns and disruption while choosing the best tech solutions that suit their needs and priorities, allowing them to focus on their core business.

Find out how your organisation will benefit from Credence’s localised advisory capabilities, especially in digitising your supply chain. visit www.credence.tech

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