The agri-chemical industry is an important component of the agricultural market in Africa, supplying farmers with animal health and agricultural chemicals such as fertilisers, pesticides, herbicides, insecticides and more.

The supply chain in the Agri-chemical industry experiences challenges regularly, most of which relate to a lack of visibility of their goods from manufacturer to distributor or wholesalers and finally to retailer. Wholesalers in particular need to ensure that they are delivering the right products to their customers with the correct volume of stock ordered, in good condition.

Technology can assist greatly to reduce complexity, streamline and deliver greater insight into the status of these processes, enhance productivity and track if competitors are gaining share.

A leading supplier of high-quality animal health and crop production within Eastern Africa faced the challenge of improving their services by streamlining their route-to-market, therefore gaining valuable line of sight. It was previously difficult for the company to achieve ‘line of sight’ of their customer’s stock and to accurately estimate delivery times through visibility of the logistics process.

Fortunately, adopting a new sales force automation platform resolved these issues. Andrew Dawson, MD at MACmobile says, “Improving supply chain management is a key issue for the Agri-chemical industry. One of the challenges within this industry is stock visibility throughout the supply chain. The other challenge is being able to tell if Agri-chemical companies can fulfil orders to their customers, if they can do it on time and if not, establish what is hindering the delivery.”

Tracing stock through the supply chain

Technology developed specifically for the Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) supply chain can help companies trace the route their stock takes from the factory to the distributor. Further to this, they can monitor stock levels and balance supply and demand more accurately. The system helps to proactively assist with stock levels though real-time information and analytics, determining when a client needs to order more stock.

It is important for companies to track their goods with access to real-time information. If deliveries are delayed, the distributor can provide reasons why they were late or resolve the issues to ensure the goods are delivered on time. These are some of the benefits that technology can and is providing to the supply chain.

Real-time intelligence technology tools can give managers the ability to oversee productivity. Through technology, management can ensure deliveries to clients are made on time, ensuring competition are not able to ‘muscle in’ on their market. Not having the right products on shelf leads to competitor advantage. Technology that can track, trace and report enforce efficiency and resolves these issues.

Distributors were constantly at risk of losing their jobs for not meeting their delivery targets, with minimal consideration to the reasons thereof. However, using this type of tool, they are now able to manage stock levels and also optimise truck routes. It is now much simpler to determine any problem, the cause thereof and the solution thanks to technology.

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