How To Boost On-Time Delivery Rates And Enhance Customer Satisfaction With Data Versatility

Brandon Marcus
January 16, 2024

On-time/In-Full (OTIF) is a crucial metric for growing your revenue and expanding your market share, reflecting how reliably you serve customers. In a volatile supply chain ecosystem, the ability to harmonize new data and uncover insights is essential to improving delivery performance and meeting customer needs. 

However, traditional ERP systems and other data platforms leave supply chain operators scrambling to reconcile data from multiple sources, preventing them from making fast decisions based on comprehensive, up-to-date information. 

In this article, we’ll discuss how enhanced order visibility and data versatility help you improve on-time delivery rates, reduce stockouts and increase customer satisfaction.  

The challenges of traditional systems

Supply chain efficiency is rooted in data integration and analysis, but traditional ERP systems often need this data-centric approach. In today’s systems, data remains fragmented mainly, and supply chain operators lack the right tools to make sense of the flood of information from various teams and links in the chain. 

Without unified data, businesses face several challenges:

  • Inaccurate Transportation ETAs: Traditional systems typically offer only average transit times, which often need to be updated and reflective of current conditions. With unreliable estimates of how long it will take to ship your products, supply planning, production planning and order fulfillment all suffer. 
  • Limited Contextual View: The inability to connect transportation details with order and SKU information limits your view of order statuses, which hampers your team’s decision-making and overall ability to monitor inventory flows. 
  • Difficulty Identifying Issues: Without an integrated view of supply chain data, teams can’t compare transport ETAs with requested delivery dates at the order level. Managing exceptions and tracking variances from plans by location, product or team for supply chain operators leads to challenges.
  • Collaboration Challenges: Traditional systems could be more effective at centralizing data and creating a shared understanding of supply operations, which inhibits collaboration between internal teams and external parties like suppliers, carriers and manufacturers.

Without an adequate data infrastructure, operational inefficiencies increase unplanned costs, undermine supply chain performance and ultimately jeopardize customer loyalty. 

How data versatility helps improve on-time delivery rates

To build a responsive operation and reach your on-time and in-full delivery targets, you need data versatility: the ability to integrate and combine multiple data sources to uncover contextual insights and separate signal from noise. 

With an adaptable data platform like Unity SCM, supply chain operators gain visibility from an order, transportation and product perspective. 

Integrating fragmented data creates a reliable view of your supply chain: up-to-date information can flow bi-directionally between stakeholders and suppliers and cross-functional teams can effectively coordinate and respond quickly to issues.  

With a complete and flexible picture of your supply chain, your teams can:

  • Optimize Commit Dates & Boost Service Levels: Track order statuses from creation to delivery, enabling you to identify shortages early and make necessary adjustments. With enhanced order and transit time visibility, you can set accurate commit dates and fill more orders without stockouts, which improves service levels and boosts revenue. 
  • Increase Fill Rates With Accurate Transit Times: With detailed transit times at the lane, route and carrier levels, you can plan around a precise understanding of how long it will take to ship your products, allowing you to manage inventory levels strategically and increase fill rates. 
  • Eliminate Manual Work and Increase Productivity: Reduce time manually tracking shipments using multiple platforms, out-of-date spreadsheets, email and phone calls, and identify, assess and mitigate risk more efficiently. 
  • Proactively Manage Exceptions: With data accessible to all supply chain stakeholders, teams can detect exceptions early and preempt issues weeks in advance: adjust plans, unstick orders, reroute shipments and minimize costly last-minute shipment expedites.

Adapting to supply chain volatility with Unity SCM

Today’s supply chain volatility demands agility, and to maintain agility and reliably deliver on time, you need a flexible data infrastructure. Why? Supply chain visibility is about more than just having more data. It’s about having accurate data at the right time.

A flexible data infrastructure allows you to: 

  • Collect and integrate varied data from multiple systems and partners (procurement, transportation, warehousing, finance, manufacturing, etc.). 
  • Normalize that data into a common language and contextualize it to create a shared understanding across global teams and organizational boundaries. 
  • Share the data and insights cross-functionally to immediately improve decision-making.

Unity SCM’s expandable, flexible platform helps businesses integrate and act on new supply chain information to deliver products to customers when needed. Learn more: