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You must have the information required for decision-making and you must examine it before you begin to use it.

Popular saying goes that information is power.  The implication of the sentence is very significant in every field, in general life itself. Power is authority to decide; and to decide, one needs information to decide. It is very true of any business organization, of any business activity. Supply chain is a coordinated series of business activities with the singular focus on successful sustained enterprise. At every link of the chain, some decisions need to be taken to further the process of business.  And to decide you need details, the information without which it will not be a decision but random conjecture.

Exchange of vital information among the units of supply chain coordinates all the essential activities of the company.  Without the correct and required information, effective decisions cannot be made. In a way, business is critical decision-making at every level of administration.

The manager must know what the customer wants; the inventory manager must know the details of inventory now available and needed in time; the marketing personnel must know whether the products have been shipped right in time and in quantity.  When all important people know all important information, the supply chain functions smoothly as well as efficiently.

The information, it must be borne in mind, must be accurate and relevant; it must be accessible whenever required which means the information must be shareable. If all these features are fulfilled, no doubt, the information becomes an effective and necessary tool for business promotion.

If such information flow is not there, it will end in serious negative consequences to the interests of the business. The company will produce things not required or produce things in excess of demand; the inventory will be defective in the sense it will not have enough materials for production when required. Ultimately, the business will be trouble in all possible ways; it tends to lose its customers and what greater harm can be there for the business than the loss of a customer who is a definite source of revenue.

In our next session, we shall consider Distribution and Supply Chain.

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